Saturday, 4 September 2010


Inspired by the writings of other blogs that I have had the pleasure to read, I decided to work out what my own 'Total UK list' is - that is, how many living species have I recorded within these isles? My total - 2599 - elicited neither disappointment not pleasure in me, as I had no idea what the total may be. My breakdown, for those of you that have read this far, or have the slightest interest is:

Flora: 1359
Moths: 675
Birds: 370
Butterflies: 50
Dragonflies: 33
'Other' insects: 35
Mammals: 31
Fish: 17
Fungi: 15
Amphibians: 5
Reptiles: 4
Marine life: 5

I have not claimed any mosses, liverworts or lichens. My general insect score is low, but has plenty of scope to increase. Some of you may wonder at the depresed bird total for someone who often waffles on about great twitches from the 1970s. My listing has slowed dramatically (300 up in 1981, 350 up in 1990, but only 20 ticks in the past twenty years), which shows how little chasing I now get involved with. My only new bird this year was the White-tailed Plover which I just happened to be present when it was found at Dungeness.

So, this now opens up whole new worlds of natural history study. Another reason to try and identify every fly, beetle, lichen, moss and creepy crawly that I come across. For somebody that doesn't chase lists, I certainly do like to create and keep them. What does that make me? Sad? In need of a life?

Oh, I've just realised that my mammal list does not include Homo sapiens. That surely takes me to a nice round 2600?


Anonymous said...

Hats off to you Steve. I have trouble identifying some of the larger inverts, can you imagine having the knowledge to id all the Gnats etc.

PS : there`s plenty of scope to add to your fungi list. Now that`s another taxa i struggle with.

Josh Jenkins Shaw said...

I'm on 810 - poor isn't it? Must get out there and ID some plants and other inverts...

Josh Jenkins Shaw said...

...and a quick tot up for my plant list brings me to 956.

DorsetDipper said...

just noticed you're posting again. I always enjoy your original view of wildlife - great to have you back!

Steve Gale said...

Dean: I have opened a can of worms and even they need identifying...

Josh: 956 sounds good for one so young!

Dipper: Thanks for the thumbs up.