I love autumn days like the last few where I can calmly sit and work and just get on with my job without a worry in the world. Imagine if I kept lists of birds I'd seen and wanted those lists to get bigger and be filled with rare birds that might never turn up again on these shores in my lifetime. Thankfully that's not the case as right now I might be in a right state. As it is the joy of Regulatory Control is keeping me happy and focussed and for that I am truly thankful.
Sweet Jesus, what is going on out there? I've seen a few American passerines in this country over the years of course, but it seems that the entire Sibley field guide has turned up in the last 48 hours. A lot of these birds are rather inaccessible (for me, 100% inaccessible) as they are on remote islands, but no doubt the UK twitching merry-go-round has swung into action and there is a procession of the usual suspects happily tripping from bird to bird, work and family a distant memory. People will be booking charters, working out whether they have enough time to get on for the Bobolink and off again for the Magnolia Warbler, and then how to get to the next one. In a few days it will all be over again, lists will be inked in, the rabid need for more ticks temporarily sated. However it won't be long before they are itching to leave home again for the next one, the highs are always brief and swiftly forgotten as the next prize hoves into view.
Despite the obvious sarcasm in my first paragraph I am actually pretty relaxed. I've seen plenty of Bobolink this year, and roughly this time ten days ago I was watching Magnolia and Bay-breasted Warblers flit though the foliage on the shores of Lake Erie, completely alone but for the birds. Huge crowds or an empty boardwalk? As birding experiences go I know which I prefer, although I'd dearly love to see any of these in the UK as there is an undeniable thrill seeing a genuine rarity. They just need to be a bit closer really. That said it is entirely possible some urge takes over and I just get in the car, so I might see you in Pembrokeshire....
|Here is a Chestnut-sided Warbler from many moons ago in NY where it belonged!|