The wheatear arrives in March back from its African winter home. The male in particular is a striking bird, with a pale orange chest and black and white eye stripes, a bit like a feathery bandit. It is therefore a little unfortunate that they are named after another feature, with ‘wheat’ meaning ‘white’ and ‘ear’ meaning ‘arse’ in Old English.
Although they breed in our uplands, and occasionally exposed rocky coasts, in early March you can spot them almost anywhere as they travel through, with their white behind becoming more prominent in flight. Best places to spot them include open areas such as fields and perching on a vantage point looking out for insects.