Friday, 14 August 2015

Pants birding

On Monday I spent a few hours grilling the fields and hedgerows at Canons Farm. It was eerily quiet, not even a 'hweet' or 'hoo-eet' from a Chiffchaff or Willow Warbler to be heard. I almost cheered when a Whitethroat broke cover. My skywatching revealed nothing, apart from the fact that a few corvids and gulls were bothering to move, and even they were doing so half-heartedly. I returned home with the thought that at least I had made the effort.

This afternoon I returned, hopeful that the odd migrant would be lurking - after all, Tree Pipit, Reed Bunting and Curlew had all been recorded there mid-week, and are all good local birds. But a steady drizzle greeted me and the fields and hedgerows did a repeat performance from Monday (although to be honest a single Chiffchaff did call). I wandered lonely as a very damp cloud, my enthusiasm waning with every passing minute. I don't mind birding without highlights, I just like to have something to look at! I was desperate, so started to scan the Carrion Crows and Jackdaws, I grilled the Woodpigeons sitting on wires, I ogled a Dunnock that was stupid enough to show itself. This is not birding made of legend. It was pants.

I'm a great believer in taking the rough with the smooth; that you remember your good days because of your bad days; that you are a minute closer to seeing that good bird or avian spectacle; and the more you bird the luckier you get. But sometimes - just sometimes - it can be hard to accept. Of course, I'll be over there again in the next few days, because you just never know...

4 comments:

  1. Much the same here today Steve, but right at the death a Whinchat turned up...............fantastic!

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  2. At least you're out enduring the grotty days Steve. Many birders these days only venture out when their pager bleets, rare bird.

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  3. Steve, I can feel your pain, inland birding certainly drives a hard bargain; as someone who lived in land-locked Bedfordshire for 30 years I can vouch for that. It`s shocking what`s happened to bird diversity and numbers in the wider countryside, and the sad thing is I cannot see it improving much in the near future. Sorry to be so negative, but hope to see you down on the shingle soonest.

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  4. Today, to blast away the birding blues, I went up to 'that there London' with my eldest daughter to look at the Royal Geographical Society annual photographic exhibition. It's done the trick...

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