Well, my last post was a bit 'down' wasn't it. Feeling sorry for myself, wasn't I...

After a couple of days to cheer myself up - and even with a bit of naff birding included as well - I have come to a happy place once more. I've realised for some time that, if one wants to be all 'worthy' and plough the lonely patch-birding-furrow, then you'd better accept and put up with fallow periods. It's no different for those watching the coastal hot-spots, it's all relative.

I could get in the car and drive for 90 miles, go to Pagham or Dungeness, but to be honest why join the hordes already there? It isn’t a case of 'been there, done that' because if I lived close to those places I would, without doubt, bird them - but would maybe choose some of the lesser watched areas that can still be found there. Believe it or not they do exist even in the most ‘birdied-out’ sites. I've often mentioned this little gem of a quote from Bernard Venables, author of the Mr. Crabtree fishing books:

"there are three stages to the angler's evolution. To begin with, as a child, you just want to catch fish - any fish. Then you move to the stage where you want to catch big fish. And finally, with nothing left to prove, you reach a place where it's the manner of the catch that counts, the rigour and challenge of it, at which point the whole thing takes on an intellectual and perhaps even a philosophical cast."

If you replace the word 'fish' with 'birds' then you might get what I'm striving for. Now, if you'll excuse me I need to go and lay my worthy head on a pillow. Righteousness is very tiring...


Dylan Wrathall said…
I feel your pain. As both an angler and birder, I empathise with this scenario, the ageing process does produce many parallel experiences? Surely it is so much more rewarding to discover the first Garden Warbler, on your patch, than to chase second hand news/sightings of a Sub-alpine Warbler?

Steve Gale said…
Truth is Dyl, I quite enjoy this 'third stage' in the Mr Crabtree Scale of Fishing/Birding!
Ric said…
A wish to do things with a different emphasis would be nice but for the landscape changing and taking away the very things that drew one to it in the first place.
At times it seems the decline is taking us with it.
Steve Gale said…
That last sentence is a bit too close for comfort!!

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