Monday, 22 September 2014

Bresser and Forest Optics Best Find Competition

The Bresser & Forest Optics Best Find Competition is the piece de resistance for Patchwork Challenge. This is the best find of the whole patchbirding year as voted for by you, the competitors. 

For the winner of the competition, those fine folk at Bresser & Forest Optics are very generously furnishing the winner of this esteemed competition with a pair of Bresser Montana 8.5 x 45 Binoculars worth £665.00. Follow the link to check out this superb reward that awaits one lucky patcher!

Whilst Hurricane Bertha did not really deliver up any tasty megas for patchworkers there were some really nice rares amongst the best finds reported during August.

The Stilt Sandpaper found by Ian Robson on his Druridge Pools patch in the North of England was a great bird but as a refind after the bird was initially discovered at Cresswell the chances of this winning the overall prize would seem slim.

Stilt Sandpiper (Ian Fisher)
 On the other hand the Booted Warbler found by Barrie Hamill on his Burra, Orkney patch will be on the shortlist. Both are birds I wouldn't mind turning up on my patch. A brace of Citrine Wagtails were found, one by our own Mark Lewis at Girdle Ness and the other by Paul Massey at Grindon Lough which was a site first and the eleventh county record.

Booted Warbler (Paul Higson)

 Looks like the North of the British Isles was the place to be last month.

Some of the scarcer birds during the month included a whole slew of Long-tailed Skuas from across the entire patchworking map, Joe Stockwell (Portland), James Brown ( Lowestoft),  James Spencer (Barmston) and Eammon O Donnell( Ninch/Laytown, Ireland) all found them, whilst Chris Bradshaw at Long Nab in Yorkshire managed to find 5 birds over 2 days, a good number indeed for that part of the country. Chris also scored with both Cory's and Great Shearwater during a single seawatch. Others finding the scarcer shears included Cory's for Joe at Portland and Julian Wylie (Baltimore), with Great Shearwaters being found by Tom Cadwallender (Alnmouth), Jack Bucknall (St Mary's Island) and Peter Donnelly (North Ronaldsay).

Moving on to the scarcer passerines found during the month, a couple of Common Rosefinches were found in Scotland, Ian T finding one on his Askernish patch, whilst the other was at Gary Bell's Sumburgh site. Chris Bradshaw scores again with an Ortolan Bunting at Long Nab and an Icterine Warbler for James Brown in Lowestoft earns him a second mention.

Some of the almost there birds include, a Franklin's gull seen by Tommy Corcoran at Gt Yarmouth and the Western Bonelli's warbler Joe Stockwell saw at Portland Bill, hard luck guys as it is best found, not seen.

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