I would like to explain why I was late to work this morning (and this afternoon). I suffer from an unfortunate condition known as ornithitis, which is exacerbated by a combination of clear skies and northerly winds.
Dawn found me on the rifle range, watching the more flighty (male?) Black Redstart, waiting for the sun to rise so I could take photos. When it did rise, so did the bird, up the cliffs away from the camera.
I returned to the entrance, where the duller, more confiding (female/young) was bouncing around the rocks.
By the time I left, the traffic had built up, so I was late.
At lunchtime, the sun was still shining, so I had to visit Foreness again. I didn't mean to stay long, just checking the usual places at high tide. Turnstones, Sanderlings and a few Purple Sandpipers were foraging on the seaweed thrown onto the undercliff path by the high waves.
The high tide roost held a tight group of about 150 Sanderlings, with20 or so Grey Plovers and 5 Knot. There were a couple of Purple Sandpipers, but where were the rest of them?
Finally I found the Purps, 34 in all, on the ledges of the water works pretending to be guillemots. This took more time, and so I was late back from lunch. I apologise for this, and promise that it is likely to happen again.
PS as I got cold this morning (1 degree, with northerly windchill) and wet this afternoon (wet feet trying to jump across the high tide) I shall be off ill tomorrow. (More sunshine and northerly winds are forecast).