"Road Runner"

That is the colloquial name used on Madeira for this little rock pipit (Anthus petrosus), seen here on a headland east of Funchal, the Sao Lourenco peninsula.

Today was the day of my bird-watching tour that I booked just over a week ago. (Where's the time gone?!) Our excellent guide, Catarina, had taped calls of many of the birds, which encouaged them to approach us. Even so, as you see, this one is well camouflaged.

We moved around a few different locations in their minibus. In a formal garden, I did get to see (fleetingly) - and hear the bis bis call of - a firecrest, but too high in the trees and too fast for me to photograph. Likewise, some waxbills (though I got good photos of some a year ago when we were here). We visited Canacal Port to view gulls, and finally Machico, where we saw lots of water birds and ducks. Also a goat and her kid - in my Extra.

It was a half-day tour so I ended the day having my second dip of the holiday in the open-air unheated roof-pool. Very pleasant once I was in the water swimming! Seeing the weather reports from the UK, I feel very lucky to be here. Keep warm and safe, blipmates!

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