Monday, 16 September 2013

Meopta & Forest Optic Best Find Competition - August

The doldrums of summer have been and thankfully gone and now we can all recline in a bevy of patchticks. Or so it seems reviewing the records that have come in with scarcities spread throughout the land. There are three 'BB' rarities found this month although I'm not sure any of these will trouble the judges (you!) for the Meopta & Forest Optic Best Find Competition. We have already heard about Moss Taylor's Citrine Wagtail at Weybourne Camp with Rob Fray finding another at Virkie, Shetland. This month's other rarity was Ian Mill's returning Bonaparte's Gull at Whitburn. It could all have been so different if Pete Antrobus had got to Neumann's Flash just that little bit earlier.

Here at PWC towers we like to pay homage to the underdogs of the patching world and no we aren't talking about those patches on the south coast, it is the inland patchers. This dedicated band of diehards deserve all that they find and none more so than Mark Reeder who had a cracking month finding both Great White Egret and Long-tailed Skua. I thoroughly recommend reading his account of the latter (and a great pun in the title). His local rival at Pugney's, Jonny Holliday also fared well in August with a cracker of an inland Purple Sandpiper. Not particularly unusual for me at Barmston but certainly well worth the effort inland. Lastly of the inland patchers Ben Lewis's part of the Yare Valley has had some pretty decent birds but his Montagu's Harrier in August will live long in the memory I'm sure.

On to the scarcities and I am not going to namecheck everyone who found a little bit of patch gold but needless to say a classic mid-August fall gave a good spread of 3 pointers. Top of the tree were Wrynecks with six patches registering seven birds. Level in number of birds with another seven were Greenish Warblers with patch neighbours in the badlands of Aberdeen Phil and Mark both scoring doubles. Multiple patches got Red-backed Shrike, Barred Warbler and Icterine Warbler. The scarcer scarcities with single patch records were Red-necked Phalarope, Pectoral Sandpiper, Ring-billed Gull, Woodchat Shrike, Buff-breasted Sandpiper and Cory's Shearwater. Very well done to all and sundry. I very much regret sunning myself on a birdless island for the duration now...

1 comment:

  1. Andy Jonson has won the best find - we can all give up now!