On the first day of a new football season it seems appropriate to quote the great French philosopher Eric Cantona who famously said

when the seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.

As a means of diverting press attention from the community service order he’d been given for assaulting a fan it was brilliant.

Just a few hundred yards along the road from me there are two groups of very different individuals, and I’ll write about the first today and their contrasting neighbours tomorrow.

Choosing Cantona’s quote isn’t entirely random for cars are pulling up at the roadside to witness this:

Now these gulls aren’t attracted by sardines; like any other freshly ploughed field there are worms and bugs aplenty for them to feast upon, so the gathering of the birds is not really remarkable.  It is a bird that is the centre of attention however, for those at the roadside are “twitchers”, bird watchers who will travel with their magnifying lenses in search of a sighting of a rare species.

Among them was Peter, who had cleverly set up his tripod so that he could observe from the comfort of his car.  He was from Wallsend some 15 miles away and had heard that there was an unexpected visitor in this field last night.  The bird hadn’t been spotted again as yet this afternoon, but Peter and his colleagues lived in hope.  The same bird had been a visitor to our coastline last summer.

Peter agreed to being photographed, but couldn’t keep his eyes off the field before us, a true enthusiast.BTW – the cause of all the excitement was a Bonaparte’s Gull.  Just so you know.





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