Since moving to Budleigh in 2009, I have always had a number of achievable wish list birds that I would like to find on the patch, one day. Spotted Crake has always been one of those species, particularly since there had been one visible from White Bridge in August 2005 (found by local birder Clive) just a few years before I moved to Budleigh! As a result, from mid to late August I always scan the vegetated muddy edges of the Otter in the hope of finding one, but until yesterday I only ever saw Water Rails.
Yesterday evening I had a quick look on the Otter and scanned from the viewing platform just south of the hide and picked up a Crake/Rail, but I only had my bins and the light was fading. Despite the large distance and lack of real detail, there was just something about its behaviour and flight that niggled me. I actually drove home, picked up my scope and returned to see if I could re-find it, but there was no further sign of the bird.
So early this morning I returned (with my scope) and within 10 minutes was pleased to relocate the bird and was even more pleased to see it was indeed a Spotted Crake!
Great to share it with many of the local birders and hopefully it will stay for a while.
Some brief video below: