While sitting in my home office this afternoon finishing off my submission for the Orkney 2014 bird report, I glanced up to see a very pale, very speckled looking female Blackbird having a go at a piece of apple out in the rear part of the garden. Close by was another female Blackbird, for comparison, who was a lot more like you would expect to see.
Grabbing the binoculars for a closer look I had just got focused in on her when another bird walked across behind her. Adjusting the binoculars to see what it was I did a double take as it was none other than our visiting Water Rail. For once the camera was at hand to get some record shots, the quality isn't too good as I was shooting through a dirty window in my haste to catch it on camera before it disappeared.