Monday 25 March 2013

Proper Patch Gold

Oh yes, oh my oh my. Local Monster, London gem. Missing half a wing, but who cares? Do I get extra points?

Tuesday 19 March 2013


There's been a few bits on patch - Marsh Harrier and Eider yesterday were useful (missed the latter last year!), but missed out on a fly-by Tufted Duck today - a tricky one to get back. At least I'm ahead of Seppy but still no Wheatear, Firecrest or Sand Martin


Not got much to report as I haven't been out at all.  Best bird recently being a mistle thrush which is a good bird for the patch and usually only get one or two per year but it would be annual except that I didn't get one last year.

Other than that all the usual stuff and still plenty of usual stuff to be got.

I must get out more and would do if wasn't for the local farmer who has drained all the best pools, cut down a load of sycamores and bushes and ploughed up a footpath which is use to run across the middle of the patch and took me to the excellent bushes along the whinnyfold road.  So i've been somewhat uninspired in getting out much.

Still the mistle thrush helps and so maybe I'll pick up the pace a bit.

74 species

(Almost) Happy days


Monday 18 March 2013

merlin the magical puppy

still nae migs here yet (FFS - they is now officially late!) but did glean blip views of a merlin twice on the weekend - its all happnin!

Triple crown

We took advantage of a brief dry spell yesterday afternoon to do Boghall, and were rewarded with a fine peregrine and then a flock of snow buntings in the snow at the back of Caerketton.  Second record of Snobs from the patch, and a fine find for us inland boys. Pleased with that haul we went home to work on some new songs, but better was to come when we looked out of the recording studio window and saw a cracking male goosander haul itself out of the burn that goes through the garden, waddle across the bridge and sit down on the path. It decided that the garden was not suitable for nesting pretty quick though, before we could get any photos. Shame, but a cracking patch and garden tick. 3 new for the year means 75.67%. Bring it!

Saturday 16 March 2013

Coming at ya!

I learned that from the kids on the street. 2 Shelduck on the way to the studio in the week are storming birds for round here, plus I mopped up Kingfisher last weekend. Grey Wag and Bullfinch still missing, and I cannot be arsed to go listening for Owls when I could be indoors drinking. Oh, and did I mention the first Curlews for 42 years? Soon the lead will be mine. Mwah-haha-ha-ha-ha!

Friday 15 March 2013

Notebooks out, plagiarists

200 pink feet flew over earlier in the week. Divided by two, that gives 100 birds, or thereabouts. It's that level of analysis that makes a top patch lister.

Thanks to The Eternal Flame from whom I nicked that gag.

Add 1 LBBG, and we are on 71.6%. Top spot is ours again.

Wednesday 13 March 2013

Patch Gold

It's staying steady enough on patch... to my surprise and delight... with some tricky enough species falling into my lap of late. While the owl tree hasn't yielded any barn owls yet this year (and no sign of pellets either) I did flush a brace of woodcock from underneath it last week. Result!

Then yesterday I read online that an early sand martin had been spotted not far from me... so I dashed out for a quick scan of the skies from the front door. No sand martins, but there were 43 (count 'em) golden plover circling overhead before landing in the field across the road.

Golden Plover flock
 A subset of the 43 golden plover in the field across the road.

Golden plover crop
And a severe crop of a small grouping... clearly golden plover -- just in case Seppy casts doubt on my plover ID prowess (wouldn't put it past him)
To call them patch gold is an understatement -- it's only the second time I've ever seen goldies in the vicinity, and the first time on the patch proper.

Both of those little beauties take me to 59 for the year, or 71.52%... that'll do nicely!

Saturday 9 March 2013

nae ears

no wheatears yet, tho its still officially a week early. 6 blackwits was de best i could manage today, and its goin shitty again tomorrow! Arse! Still, puts me level with Costner, so i put my score above his, for the laugh!

Friday 8 March 2013


I've been really really awful as far as the patch goes this year - it must be depression as a result of not winning last year. Anyhow, since I last posted I've twitched four Goldeneye and finally caught up the pair of Gypos. Goldeneye now less Mega than it once was, but still a great one for the list. Missing loads, but have precisely zero momentum at present. And it's raining again.


Slow progress

Year list creeping up. 4 in 4 days so spring must be approaching. Pity about the forecast then! Bewick's Swan was a site tick, Crossbill a useful one whilst Goldfinch and Greenfinch both gank.

Monday 4 March 2013

No wizardry... just merlin for the lead!

Just logged on to find that I'd dropped off the top spot. Yikes!

Luckily I'd just been out and bagged me a merlin in the north east corner... which, when you add it to the washing-line lapwing fly-by of last week elevates me to 69.09% and takes me back to the top of the leaderboard.