I am still waiting for the Waxwings to arrive in Sussex but with time moving on it is starting to look as though we could miss out on seeing them. That will not come as a surprise to most of the local birders. In an exceptional year across the country, for rare and scare birds, Sussex has been noticeably missing from the list. Sussex, Surrey and Hampshire seem to be a birding Bermuda Triangle.
Today I needed to travel down to Canterbury. It is a regular trip and I usually take the opportunity to visit a few birding sites on the way. With Waxwings having been reported in the north Kent town of Strood and with it only being a short distance from my intended route it seemed to be worth a visit. At least I would have the opportunity of a 2016 year tick.
When I arrived it didn't look too bad. There were only two other birders present and the Waxwings were flying between a high tree perch and an orange fruiting Rowan in a garden opposite the Bounty Pub. The only problem was that the Rowan was mostly in shadow.
After about half an hour the lighting improved but unfortunately the number of birders also increased. We were getting up close to twenty people with most standing directly under the feeding tree, setting up tripods and talking loudly. The Waxwings were coming down but were just grabbing a few berries and heading back to the safety of their high level perch.
How inconsiderate birders can be. Don't they realise that I need to have these bird all to myself, for about an hour, in what was turning out to be perfect light. We all have our problems. In the end I gave in, joined the fray, grabbed a couple of quick pictures, and then left to find a more peaceful place.