A RARE bird which popped up in Hartlepool appears to have moved on – but not before it attracted the attention of more than 2,000 twitchers.
Crowds of people flocked to the Headland Bowling Green on Tuesday after twitcher Chris Brown, 59, discovered the rare orphean warbler nearby.
The last time the rare African bird was spotted in Britain was more than 20 years ago in Cornwall in 1991.
But as people from all over the country continued to make their way to Hartlepool on Tuesday night and early into Wednesday morning, the bird appeared to move on.
“You can never quite be 100 per cent sure but I think it has gone,” said Chris, a landscape gardener, who lives on the Headland.
“There is a chance that it might be somewhere nearby but it’s more likely that it’s gone elsewhere.”
Chris, who is a member of the Tees Ringing Group (TRG), said he was awoken at around 4.30am yesterday by even more people arriving at the green.
But for some, long journeys from around the UK, may have been in vain as the bird was no longer in sight.
The scenes at the bowling club are reminiscent of June last year when thousands of people flocked to see a white-throated robin which landed on the mainland for the very first time.
“It’s bizarre, we thought that was just a one-off,” added Chris.
“This isn’t the same as last year, every twitcher in the country had to see that last year.
“But this was certainly a welcome surprise.”