Saturday, 15 August 2015

Stock Taking and Crystal Ball Gazing


We are 32 weeks into the year and what have we got to show for it? Cumulatively 124 species recorded from the patch, as can be seen from the list to your right.

The last 5 years have seen us averaging 147 (147.2 to be precise) at years end, so what is left for 2015? By rights another 23 species should put in an appearance.

What are they to be I hear you say? Well the most likely must be those that have turned up in all of the last five years, to wit:

Black Redstart*
Black-necked Grebe
Brambling
Curlew
Lesser Redpoll
Little Gull
Rock Pipit
Sandwich Tern
Short-eared Owl
Turnstone

 I would think that most of those will grace us with their presence in the next 20 weeks, though we could struggle with the Turnstone (one at Amwell this week, so never say never).

Those that have turned up in four of the last five years must also be in with a shout, namely:

Barnacle Goose
Bittern
Firecrest
Golden Plover
Little Owl*
Osprey
Redstart
Ruddy Duck
Smew
Turtle Dove*
Waxwing

 Of course we have lost our regular Barnacle Goose and almost certainly our last regular wintering Ruddy Duck. Little Owl (a former breeder*, along with Black Redstart and Turtle Dove) is extirpated from the patch but all of these could theoretically still put in an appearance so let’s assume that half of them will.

What does that leave us with? The mystery box! The seven or eight species that are going to motivate us to keep going for the rest of the year. Any suggestions?

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@birdingprof

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