In the days when I was caught up in the obsessive world of twitching I would have seen one of the available White-tailed Plovers previously. For a while now I haven't bothered too much, especially if it is a bird I've seen abroad. That is if it is outside Kent. Once it enters our fair county then the obligation to go and see it is too big to resist.
The current White-tailed Plover has been doing the rounds, Seaforth, Slimbridge, Rainham in Essex and a visit to Holland. It obviously got the wrong Rainham but in the end it had the good manners to visit Dungeness before it goes home to the troubled area of Iraq, Iran, Pakistan of one of the neighbouring countries. I have seen them in their wintering range in India.
It seems the it has been renamed, in most modern books, as a White-tailed Lapwing, and I suppose that this does more readily describe it's taxonomic relationships, but I must admit it is not the name that first comes to mind.
The views through a telescope of it were great, but it was a little bit distant for my camera. I notice that James Hunter and Andrew Lawson have put up cracking shots on Surfbirds, and I know Dave Walker has a great flight shot, as I saw it on his camera, that will be well worth publishing.
Like several of the genus it is a longer legged bird that the "Northern" Lapwing and it is often found feeding in deeper water than it's shorter legged relatives. As usual it was a good social occasion as well. I went with Jack Chantler, who knows most birders in Kent. I hope it stays a while so that most people catch up with it.