Right, let me make this clear - I am not proud of chasing around the minor roads of Bedfordshire looking for geese. But I had to, you understand don't you? If you are reading this, Father McKinney, I seek your forgiveness. I promise never to be an eco-terrorist again... until the next time a county tick turns up or I win a 4x4 in a prize draw.
Greater White-fronted Geese have been seen in my home county for the last week or so, two flocks no less; one at Roxton and one at some bourgeois old git's place at Southill Park.
I don't live in my home county now, and have been unable to get there until today. Katie had seen both flocks and after hearing of her adventures during her lunch hours I had to go. Today was the day.
So this morning, after dropping her off at work with some Cheestrings, a can of Tizer and an apple, I nicked her car from The Lodge carpark and headed north up the A1 to Roxton where there was f'all but a pair of Shelduck and a couple of those really annoying flyover zhu-zhu-ing redpolls that just won't sit down nearby for you to examine closely.
Bugger it, off to Southill. F'all again during three visits apart from a grumpy old sod of a gamekeeper who looked at me, standing on the roadside with bins and scope as if I was a terrorist planning to assasinate the occupants of the aforementioned stately spread.
Bollocks to this.
After a haircut (superfluous information), I called back into Roxton on my way to Paxton Pits. Amongst the hundred or so Greylags were 27 W-F's. Dainty little things compared to the humungous, noisy, aggressive, hissing shit-beasts they have as cousins. One had the good grace to preen and flap for me, showing its attractive belly markings.
I've changed my mind about wildfowl - the real ones are really quite cool. A day well-spent, and an hour well-spent reacquainting myself with a species I haven't seen for nearly three years. I even checked them for erythropus.