It seems to be a great year for Stonechats on the coast this year – there are two a pairs at least close to the office at Ainsdale, and I’ve encountered several pairs elsewhere. but this critter stopped me in my tracks when I was in Slack 170 this morning – strikingly black and white above, with startling huge white wing patches and a big collar.
In some positions it appeared to have a white rump (see last two really bad pics), although in others a buffy one.
In flight it was so black and white it reminded me of the bastard love child of a Pied Fly and a Masked Shrike!
One of the browner resident male Stonechats chased it off over the dunes in the direction of Pontins, but I managed these dodgy “point and press” pics (if only for a scope) as it perched up once or twice.
Not pale enough for one of those supersexy Caspian jobs (at least I don’t think it is), but a stunning bird nonetheless.
Anyone got the big boy “Stonechats” book to hand so we can play with groovy latin names and use italics?