Thursday, 19 November 2015

Estuarine Minileague - October 2015

Another month draws to a close in the estuarine minileague and the comparative table looks largely the same, the top five comprising the same familiar names all be it in a slightly different order. Ed Keeble remains in poll position at Brantham followed by Shaun Robson at Lytchett Bay. Ed is still the only competitor to have reached the coveted 100% marker though November should see a few others passing this milestone. Gordon Hodgson jumps from fifth to third this month with an impressive gain of 19 points. Toby Collett drops to fourth position followed by Russell Neave at Maldon. Sixth place Emma Webb also patches Maldon it seems and it will be interesting to see if she can overtake Russell before the years end. With only 2% separating the two one good bird in November could see this happen.

Paul Sullivan heads up the points league this month with an impressive 188 species and 295 points respectively. Both Paul and second place John Bradley notched Pallid Harrier during October, bringing in welcome bonus points for both competitors. Paul also picked up an additional 9 points for the impressive combination of Black Brant, Yellow-Browed Warbler and Sabine's Gull. A good month in Lincs it seems! Further down the table, Howard Vaughan upset Dave Craven for third place following an impressive gain of 30 points at RSPB Rainham Marshes.

In terms of the birds seen this month the aforementioned Pallid Harrier in Lincs was surely bird of the month with a self-found Glossy Ibis for Howard Vaughan coming in a close second. The latter adding 9 points to Howards already impressive October score. With Black Brant, Sabine's and YBW already mentioned, other notable finds this month include a record count of Great White Egrets for Dave Craven and Dartford Warbler for Howard Vaughan. The latter his first in five years. #PatchGold was well represented this month with Dave Craven wracking up Spoonbill, Great Skua, Woodlark and Black Redstart among other new additions and Black Redstart also featuring for Ian Ballam. Red-Necked Grebe for Ed Keeble also warrants a mention while Shaun Robson's first Yellowhammer in five years was surely put a smile on his face.

- James C (Patchwork Challenge)

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