Tuesday 16 May 2017

Nearly over

You feel that it is just about over. Spring I mean. The last few sorties on the patch have produced essentially the same birds, there is nothing moving. I am holding out hope of spring Spotted Flycatcher, though they are ridiculously difficult versus autumn birds. Per the uber-spreadsheet of happiness my tally is 1:91. There is likely a little bit of long-staying birds in the 91 records, but even so. Other than that I am pinning my chances on a wandering Red Kite. Historically I always saw these between mid-March and mid-April, but my sense is that there are more about now and that they could 'happen' any time.

And let's hope they do because I am stuck on 99 for the year. Agonisingly close. There are many misses still of course, but most of those cannot be rectified until at least July and more like September. The last remaining gimme fell on Sunday, when Richard and I enjoyed brilliant views of a Peregrine Falcon. Two Peregrine Falcons in fact. There was some kind of altercation, the first we knew of it was when we heard one of the birds, which I think is a first for me. Looking up one bird bombed off east whereas the other, possibly the victor in whatever had just happened, then cruised lazily round us in a big circle before powering off back west with a bit of mid-air shake. 

I had been wondering why I had been birding the patch for nearly five months without seeing a Peregrine, so this was much appreciated and was long overdue, as well as being easily the best views I've ever had of this bird anywhere. So that was 99, but all subsequent outings I've been seeing the same four Swifts and a motley collection of non-breeding Herring Gulls doing nothing on the football pitches. There are only so many mornings like this one can take, so it could be that my bins get hung up quite soon so that I can catch up on some much needed sleep.

June will be about sleeping. The question is basically if it is June already. I think it might be.

It may also result in more blogging. Leaving the house at 6am to go birding and then working leaves little time for anything else. Eating is prioritised, as is going to bed in order to be up early to repeat the whole routine. Happily this can all end soon as proper no-birds summer kicks in and we all lose interest. Can't wait!


  1. Still reserving weekends for the rest of the world though?

  2. I'm stuck on 99 too! Doubledecker (or nicer alternative) for the first to break the ton??