Wednesday, 22 April 2020

More on noc-migging

#BWKM0 ND&B garden challenge
DAY 34

There has been a lot of chat going on about noc-migging recently, mostly emanating from new adoptees of this dark art. As much as it is bringing a new dimension to their birding, it is also causing them to ask some fundamental questions. One of our competitors, Jono L, wrote a compelling post about it which you can read by clicking here. As a naked noc-migger I hear all of my overhead calls as they happen, but must confess to wishing that I had recordings of some of the calls that I do hear, so that I have the ability to subsequently check them. Last night was a case in point. I was out in the garden as darkness fell when a single call - fairly distant - came out of the gloom.


I froze, hoping that it would call again. Nothing. My mind was then in turmoil. It sounded like a Spotted Redshank. But then again, had I heard a distant female Tawny Owl? I normally wouldn't consider that you could confuse the two, but context goes out of the window as you stand in the dark with your imagination running riot. It didn't sound quite right for the owl - but then again, being honest, not quite right for the wader either. There was nothing I could do but forget about it. Consign it to the 'I wonder what that was' folder. If only I had obtained a recording...

I'm still mulling it over today. The angel on my right shoulder is saying "No Steve, you're getting carried away with yourself, it was a Tawny Owl." However, the devil on my other shoulder is whispering "Tawny Owls go 'ku-vit' not 'chew-it!!'"


OUR COMBINED TOTAL (BRITISH ISLES GARDENS) IS 172 SPECIES   Still to be recorded are: Pochard, Common Sandpiper, any skua, Arctic Tern, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Kingfisher, Whinchat, Lesser Whitethroat.

Our oversea's gardens (New Zealand and Albania) add an additional 22 SPECIES 

Todays additions are: Bar-tailed Godwit (Steve G)

You can find the combined #BWKM0 list by clicking on the right-hand tab above.


Our 'garden collective' stands at 59


Garden firsts
Richard P (Charmouth, Dorset) - Whitethroat

There have been 171 garden firsts across the competition.


Visual interlude - #13 Beesands, Devon
When I first came across this view, while walking the South Devon coastal path, I had to rub my eyes in disbelief. It was as if somebody had constructed my dream birding patch. I didn't know that this village existed, never mind the small water body that is separated from the beach by rough grassland. Look at all those fields, all the hedgerows and those copses! What goodies have graced this site and which birder had the good fortune to call it home? And it gets even better - there is a pub in the village! That is Start Point you can see further along, the Prawle just around the corner. Nirvana!

How are we getting on?
Alphabetical order by first name. The first figure is the garden score as on March 20th. The second is since then (as up to date as I am aware).

Arjun D (Wallington, Surrey) - 74/66; Bene A (Tirana, Albania) xx/30;
Benno W (Goodnestone, Kent) xx/37; Bernard B (Ruckinge, Kent) 107/61; 
Bob S (Worcester Park, Surrey) 86/35; Callum M (Hemel Hempstead, Herts) 64/61;
Cheech A (Langley Vale, Surrey) xx/38; Chris P (Claygate, Surrey) - 43/40; 
Dave B (Chatham Islands, Pacific Ocean) 30/29; Dave P (Shoreham, West Sussex) - 55/43; 
David S (West Raynham, Norfolk) - 87/59; Debbie S (Portland, Dorset) 155/50; 
Dylan W (Thanet, Kent) 111/53; Ed S (Farncombe, Surrey) - 79/77;  
Gavin H (Bridport, Dorset) xx/46;  Geoff B (Chessington, Surrey) 69/28; 
Gill H (Tenterden, Kent) 60/31; Gordon H (Redhill, Surrey) 80/43; 
Ian K (Leigh, Surrey) 62/37; Ian S (Sidcup, Kent) - 113/48; 
Ian W (Merton Park, London) 86/47; Isaiah R (New Malden, London) 76/52; 
John P (Banstead, Surrey) xx/xx; Jono L (Wanstead, London) 83/67; 
Josephine S (Leatherhead, Surrey) 40/40; Justin T (Charmouth, Dorset) 59/32;
Mark D (Dorking, Surrey) 59/54; Mark H (Littlestone, Kent) 135/61:
Mark N (Stutton, Suffolk) - 77/60; Martin C (Lydd, Kent) 140/85;
Mathew B (Wrotham, Kent) - 33/50; Matt P (Pulborough, West Sussex) 126/104;   
Michael D (Craster, Northumberland) 106/60; Mike P (Malling, Kent) 70/62; 
Mike R (Battle, East Sussex) 97/51;  Oscar D (Chiswick, London) - 67/64;
Paul D (London) 84/44; Pete B (Shadoxhurst, Kent) 101/47;
Phil B (Ramsgate, Kent) 54/30; Rebecca G (Balham, London) xx/15;
Reuben B (Tufnell Park, London) - 45/44; Richard F (Pinner, London) 63/35;
Richard P (Charmouth, Dorset) - 101/75;  Robin S (Cranleigh, Surrey) - 101/53; 
Sam B (Enniskeane, Cork) - 67/64; Seamus E (Thornton Cleveleys, Lancs) - 67/40; 
Sean M (Pinner, London) - 50/39; Seth G (Uig, Skye) 64/50;  
Stephen R (Harrogate, Yorks) 66/43; Steve C (Guildford, Surrey) 66/37; 
Steve G (Banstead, Surrey) - 92/69; Steve T (Ewell, Surrey) 59/36;
Steve W (Hawes, N Yorks) - 91/58; Stewart S (Howick, Northumberland) 131/74;
Stuart C (Walkern, Herts) - xx/63;  Sye W (Aston Clinton, Bucks) - xx/40;
Tony B (Woodford, London) 69/52; Wes A (Capel, Surrey) - 96/86



Wild Stutton said...

Hi Steve, my Med Gull yesterday has taken me to 61 and it was new for the garden.

Steve Gale said...

Thanks Mark, will add tomorrow

Gavin Haig said...

Steve, your aural predicament is one of the reasons I bought a recorder. If last night's Stone-curlew had flown over while I was sitting out, I'd have been stuffed without a recording. Mind you, I would never have guessed I'd missed out on such a gripper!

Steven W said...

Swift for me today Steve. Puts me on 59

Michael Drage said...

Hi Steve
Odd combination of our third-ever black redstart and a greylag takes me to 62.

Unknown said...

Hi Steve
Don't know if you are aware but the BTO Garden Bird Survey is being offered free during the lockdown(£17 annual fee). just have to enrol on line.
Nothing new today. Cormorant circling very high was the best

bob smith said...

sorry that was me

Steve Gale said...

Thank you once again for all of your efforts and comments.