|Walton Downs - I've seen Peregrine, Golden Plover and Whinchat from this spot - what chance a shrike in 2015?|
I started my birding journey in 1974 by walking out of my front door and birding the local green spaces, and it looks as though things are going to come full circle. My plans for 2015 revolve around a concerted effort on my closest sites: Canons Farm; Banstead Woods, Downs and Heath; Park Down and Chipstead Bottom; Walton Downs and Heath; Epsom Downs; and the Ewell complex of Howell Hill, Priest Hill and the river and ponds at Bourne Hall. Although birding will take up a greater part of my time I will not ignore the plants and butterflies - this is a superb area for both. Then, of course, the garden MV will see its 29th consecutive season of operation - there are still moth surprises to be had. I know that the birding will be slow, with the odd burst of excitement, but that will do nicely. My aims and appreciation of such things are different now.
Over the next few weeks I'll introduce you to some of these sites, if only to give you a break from the incessant Dungeness nostalgia. By the way, I'll still find the time to nip down to the hallowed shingle...