Last weeked we saw nearly 70 species at Rainham Marshes RSPB reserve on the Thames, including Bearded Tit, Avocet, Caspian Gull, Water Pipit, Little Egret, Ruff, Black-tailed Godwit and Peregrine. That was the good part. The bad part? It was nearly a day-and-a-half camel ride from north London via London Underground tubes and overground rail to get there. Well, it actually took three hours (quicker on return) even though its only 22 miles as the Common Yellowthroat flies. Why? Tube lines out of action, late trains, the usual story. We heard that a coach group from Wolverhampton had traveled to the reserve in the same time! Next time I'll go by bike - should be there in half the time.