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On day two of #30DaysWild I decided to try to solve a mystery. Last Monday, 28 May, I was having a wander around Lavernock Nature Reserve when I heard a bird making an unusual ‘tech tech’ sound in a group of nearby shrubs and trees (you can hear it at the beginning of this short video clip I recorded). I edged closer and got glimpses of a dark head and back with a much lighter front and belly, but I couldn’t get a clear view or any photos.

180602 Lesser whitethroat (4)

Silly me thought it might have been a Pied flycatcher but I knew that was probably wrong, and I was soon put straight about how extremely unlikely that possibility was for the Lavernock site by a much more experienced birding friend. But what was it?

180602 Lesser whitethroat (2)

I wasn’t sure if the bird would still be around but today was a lovely day for a walk and Lavernock is a wonderful nature reserve – I knew I would find things of interest even if I couldn’t find the bird again.

180602 Lesser whitethroat (1)

Well, as you’ve guessed from the title of this post and from the photos here, I found my bird and solved the mystery. It’s a Lesser whitethroat – in fact, I’m 99% sure there were two of them and that they’re nesting, as I watched the bird repeatedly foraging for food in the greenery, then flying back and forth to the same location in a clump of bushes.

180602 Lesser whitethroat (3)

These are usually very skulky birds, more often staying within trees and bushes and not easily seen, so I was very lucky to get some decent views of one bird sitting high in the tree tops. A perfect result for the second day of my 30 Days Wild!