Today it was a choice between the Red-throated Diver at Arlington Reservoir and a return trip to Arundel Wetland Trust for another go at the Firecrest. Both were tempting but having failed to secure a decent picture of the Firecrest yesterday, and in fact having failed to get a decent picture of one ever since I started birding, it had to take top priority.
After two hours with hardly a sighting of any birds it was beginning to look like a bad decision. I was bored and hungry and really needed a bacon sandwich. I would have gone but Dave kept winding me up about the bird turning up as soon as I left. It was just as well that he did because that is exactly what would have happened.
Fortunately I hung on and with a Goldcrest and then a Firecrest arriving in quick succession all thought of eating disappeared.
Photographing the Firecrest was hard work. They are very fast moving and you rarely get clear views of them. By the time the camera has focused on them they have usually moved on and you are left with a shot of an empty perch or the back end of the bird as it disappears out of the picture.
This time we were lucky, the bird stayed in the area for a decent length of time. I had an awful lot of failures but in the end weight of numbers told and I ended up with a few good shots.
Am I satisfied, no not really. The background of most of the pictures is very messy. I didn't get a shot of the bird with its crest up, and all my flight shots were blurred. However, as Dave always says, they are a lot better than the pictures I had this morning.