I got a text from Dominic Mitchell this morning saying he'd just found (or refound) a Glaucous Gull at Rainham, a bird I still needed for my London list. After mulling it over and checking I had a clear afternoon I decided to leave work at 12.00 and head over there. Fortunately getting there from work on public transport is pretty easy, got the tube from Westminster to Tower Hill, walked up the road to Fenchurch Street and even had time to buy a coffee before getting on the 12.35 train. Arriving at Purfleet just before 1.00 it was then a 15 minute walk to the reserve, although I had to go a slightly longer way round as the bridge over the river was closed as they were resurfacing it. I did see they were building a new bridge at the mouth of the river direct to the river wall so that'll save a lot of time when that's open.
Even when I got to the reserve it was still a fair walk around to where the Glaucous had been seen, I'd got another message to say the last sighting had been on Target Pools so I headed there, just pausing to check out concentrations of gulls on the way round. There wasn't much else to be seen as it was still pretty frozen. I got to the pool and could see several hundred large gulls roosting on the ice. Fortunately someone had the bird in their scope so I got straight on the bird, a nice, 'biscuity' juvenile. I was well pleased as it's not an easy bird to connect with in London and I'd just walked straight up to it. After getting my fill I carried on the circuit and jammed into the Serin sitting on a small bush on the river wall before flying along and out of sight. I'd contemplated walking back to Rainham station along the river wall but that's a long way and decided I'd seen enough and went back to Purfleet instead. Another great after-work twitch at Rainham!