Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Empid-free zone

Full-time employment has its advantages, of course, but I was reminded this week that accommodating an acute twitching habit isn't among them. An Empidonax Flycatcher, almost certainly an Acadian, was discovered at Dungeness sufficiently early on Tuesday morning to make twitching it from as far afield as Cornwall theoretically possible.
The geekier corners of the internet are currently full of pictures of a rubbish satellite dish with an Acadian Flycatcher on top. Here is a picture of an excellent satellite dish without an Acadian Flycatcher on top.

Time and distance were, however, academic in my case: there were urgent reports to write, important meetings to attend and mission critical pens to be pushed. A shame as it was quite the show off, judging by the photos taken by work-shy friends who were able to cancel their mid-morning appointments with Jeremy Kyle, hurriedly change out of their coffee stained pyjamas and head off to Kent.
On reflection, I have not had a lot of luck with this family, three individuals from which have appeared on these shores in the last seven years. I couldn't go for the first one in Cornwall due to work commitments. Any chance of seeing the second one in Norfolk was scuppered by a family visit. And now this one, another victory for professional duty over personal obsession. Ah well, at least I didn't head off in the wee small hours, burning more fuel than I had previously realised in my nearly new VW, only to find the bird gone this morning, apparently for good.

So, if, like me, you find yourself gainfully employed for the full working week, and have yet to experience the joy of retirement, voluntary redundancy, gardening leave or other forms of indolence, this post is for you. Stop torturing yourself by looking at stonking photos of the Flycatcher on Birdguides, eschew all those celebratory blog posts and finder's accounts, and dwell a while here in my Empid-free zone.


  1. You're hilarious although I have no idea what your looking for!

    1. Thanks Bill - you probably had Acadian Flycatchers migrating through your garden when you lived in the Caribbean but this was the first one found alive on this side of the pond!