Pied-billed Grebe, complete with stunning pied bill as it progresses into its summer plumage
Rather pleased that it had shown so easily I packed my stuff out, set up the scope and in the few minutes I was preparing myself it had decided to go swim behind some reeds before going to rest (only its nape and back visible). It took some time for it to show its stunning pied bill again but the views improved progressively throughout the day and finally to top it all off, it came right up close performing excellently for the massive crowds of assembled twitchers (a slightly overexertion as at times it was only me stood there!). There was still time to just about squeeze in a visit to the Steart stint but I felt the grebe deserved a little more attention so I ended up spending the better part of the day on the platform. A little bit of variety when a nice male Bearded Tit came pinging through the reeds, providing rather good views followed by a second appearance of the Great White Egret as it made a wide circuit of the lake before coming into land.
Great White Egret
Rather unexpectedly, a hirundine species also flew through but instead of getting my bins on it for any ID I was too engrossed in watching the grebe, instead hoping it'd return later but sadly that wasn't the case. I also trudged up and down the path a couple of times and had a nice brief view of a Barn Owl gliding across the reeds, followed with good views of a Kingfisher and 3 Lesser Redpolls feeding on the muddy margins of the channel alongside the footpath.
Other birds of note included 2 Marsh Harriers quartering the reedbed, a wisp of Snipe several Buzzards and on my return , small swathes of Starlings heading in the direction for the roost at the reserve.