Upon the news of its appearance there, I and a party of excited fellow-twitchers raced to the Seahaven nature reserve in the hope of glimpsing the extremely rare Fregata Aquila- the Ascension Frigatebird. There we stood, bedecked with the best binoculars buckets of money could buy, pelted by the rain in the Channel gales until we were frozen to our cores. Then suddenly from behind a storm-lashed clump of reed it appeared- a majestic, haughty creature, robed in many-hued splendour. A cry went up, and the battery of binoculars was swiftly trained in the direction of the beautiful bird. Alas our efforts were in vain, however, as we were all twitching so severely we could not hold our binoculars steady enough for a decent view. All that could be seen was a vague bird-like blur, dancing against the background of the reed beds. There remained nothing but to retire to a local hostelry to revive our sluggish circulations with a drop of stimulant.
Subsequently some good did spring from the disappointment, as on the trip home I made preliminary sketches of a new device that might help twitchers everywhere, sketches that have at last led to the launch of the revolutionary 'Gynocular', pictured below:
This remarkable new invention will free twitchers from the effects of their tremors, allowing them to see stable images of their beloved birds. Two stylish and unobtrusive gyroscopes are attached near the objective lenses of the binoculars, carefully configured to rotate around mutually orthogonal axes, providing near-perfect stabilisation. The Gynoculars are available in two variants: the Standard, in which the gyroscopes are manually brought up to speed by pulling a string, and the Deluxe, in which the gyroscopes are accelerated by battery power. The Deluxe is particularly recommended for twitchers, since the gyros in the Standard version are a bugger to thread with shaky hands.
Twitchers will know a good thing when they see it (those years of bird-watching, after all), and will surely wish to click at once to my E-bay shop to take advantage of early-bird discounts now on offer.