Lack of zoom lens = lack of blog posts around here, so to answer all the one emails I've received urging me to keep posting, it's now time to confirm that this particular birding blog is now sadly extinct.
After a full €800 refund for my faulty Sigma 150-500 zoom lens, I started looking for alternative lens options, which for the same price with the same reach, were non existent.
Money still safely put away, my car failed its NCT, new rear axles (or something) had to be fitted, €600 was thrown at that problem, then the car tax came in at €517, so quick and easy as you like the €800 refund from my beloved lens was gone.
Additionally I've signed up for the Bike to Work scheme and what with my new road bike and a rekindled romance of cycling, you can guess where this is heading....
No more bird blog from me.
Time to move on.
Hundreds of you have suggested I still keep writing the blog without the photos - but the photography was where my interest was.
Writing, not so much.
So farewell, the cycling is a new challenge, which in my 40th year is quite a welcome discovery, unless I crash, then maybe not so welcome a discovery.
Thanks everyone for reading.
I'd be lying if I didn't admit that the old ego is touched by people saying they'll genuinely miss this blog, nice to know it became a favourite for people.
It has been lovely spending time with so many of you from Birdwatch Ireland, whether it was the 5am starts to click wintering birds over at Bull island, helping you monitor the Little tern chicks on Kilcoole beach, canon netting and tagging Brent geese near Portmarnock or 'helping' spread the BWI message at Electric Picnic - you're such a solid bunch, doing so much good work for our environment - thank you.
Dublin/Wicklow birders - those into the photography side and those who aren't, thanks for all the interesting outings and field trips.
And to Eric and all of you who were part of the 'Birds of Ireland' course - such good times.
I'm afraid I've had to delete all the comments you've all left and disable the comments section so I can leave this blog up for reference purposes, trips down memory lane, stealing of photos etc
Take Care all