There were pocket cameras, small lenses, long lenses and then a machine gun!
If that machine gun had been defending a gun turret you really would have wanted it on your side. It was firing shots in bursts of about 6, rat-a-tatting them in staccato like fashion till they almost whirred. Woolly hats all lined up, very squashed, crammed against the hide windows, kept turning and under the breath comments were going round - 'That sounds expensive,'..... 'Oh he's a wildlife photographer,'....'Have you seen his camera?' The bittern obviously knew this as he was strutting his stuff today and the excitement was palpable! He was not going in any magazine without giving his best side and lucky for him I think the machine-gunner may have got the odd good shot.
The bittern was out to get a bite of lunch and the object of the excercise was a find a hole, put your head in, stay incredibly still and wait for the fish to swim to you. At one point he had his entire neck in. Meanwhile up in the 'turret' I was incredibly grateful to Hubs who had packed me off this morning with 2 hand-warmers without which I would have frozen to death and packed it in long before the bittern came within camera distance and then really close. Brilliant experience with such a rare bird.