Mike Cram made the most of the fine weather during October with three weekend visits to Broughton and Llangennith which produced no less than sixteen (16!) year ticks during a fantastic purple patch which saw him add some goodies such as Hobby, two Black Redstarts and Water Rail. The result of this is a very impressive 142.7% which puts Mike firmly in the lead on the Wales Comparative Minileague table. With a margin of over 20% between first and second place, it seems Mike may have it all sewn up here unless the Conwy boys can manage something spectacular between now and the 31st Dec!
A Hoopoe at RSPB Conwy was the first for the reserve and a fine treat for patch duo Julian Hughes and Henry Cook, as well as the local Peregrine! Julian's second place position at 118% is safe for another month while Henry remains in third on 115%.
Trevor Fletcher connects with a patch tick Yellow-browed Warbler (all the rage these days!) at Rudry Common and also a #patchgold Rook taking him over the ton and into third place with 109%, moving ahead of Alison C and Peter Howlett.
Hoopoe at RSPB Conwy (c) Henry Cook (flickr page)
The top of the points minileague table looks rather similar again this month but we see David Carrington jump from ninth to sixth place at Sker & Kenfig where a Baird's Sandpiper and a Yellow-browed Warbler helped him reach 165 points from 130 species by the months end.
Yellow-browed Warblers feature heavily in the Wales Minileague during October with a total of seven patch birders reporting them as part of their highlights for the month. In addition to Sker & Kenfig and Rudry Common, these delightful Siberian gems were also seen at WWT Llanelli, Little Orme, Cosmeston and Lavernock, Rhyl and Ogmore Estuary.
Other notable mentions for the month included a Wryneck at Paul Robert's Ogmore Estuary patch, Crossbill and Brambling for Peter Howlett at Cardiff Bay, a Merlin at Lavernock for Ceri Jones, Eider, Curlew Sandpiper, Mediterranean Gull and Peregrine for Chris Jones at River Clywd estuary and a Kestrel at Brynna Woods for Tony Swann.
Ceri Jones breaks the 20,000 records mark submitted to BirdTrack during October with over 1,300 complete lists while the overall tally for the minileague comes to 68,241 records from 3,171 complete lists.