On the journey home from Frampton yesterday, news came through of an adult Woodchat Shrike present at Rochford in Essex. Having only seen one before in this country that being a juvenile at Chipping Sodbury in 2017, I was very keen to see an adult bird, and the fact it was in my home County strengthen the feelings. Unfortunately, the diversion from where we were would have added at least two more hours on to our journey, so we decided to wait and hope it stayed overnight.
Fortunately, it was soon found this morning and we were soon heading along the M25 and A127 towards Rochford. We Parked in Mill Lane and from here it was a short walk along the public footpath and we soon saw a small gathering of birders standing along the far edge of the field.
The shrike was spotted before we had even joined them, but as the wind became stronger it would shelter lower down among the branches, occasionally reappearing in the more open areas only to disappear again.
Time was limited, but Wallasea was only 5 miles away and we had time for a very brief visit. We were hoping to get views of Corn Bunting and we found one sitting up singing in a bush very close to the entrance track.
A brief trip this morning to add a much-welcomed addition to my Essex list and two to my year list.