Friday, December 30, 2011

Great Expectations

One of the best things about patch birding is the unpredictability, you just never know what maybe around. Of course patch birding can also be very predictable, most birders who have watched and recorded at a patch for a few years will be able to say with some degree of certainty what species will be present before a visit is made. But there is always some hope that in the words of Mr McCawber "that something will turn up". When I visit EIDB I always have some expectation that an unusual bird will be around, but usually it is not forthcoming. Many days at EIDB are utterly predictable and are somewhat mundane and 2011 has been one of those years without many surprises.
Today was mundane and predictable, the usual species in the usual places, I suppose in some respects that is reassuring, because if the usual species were not in their usual places alarm bells would ring. Though variety is the spice of life. Teal numbers were about 180, a decrease, with perhaps some moving north up the Lea to Bromley-By-Bow which has seen an increase in Teal numbers recently. A healthy count of four Common Sandpipers were on Bow Creek with seven Redshanks. No sign of the Pintail or Little Grebes and the only passerines of note were five Linnets. The Thames was still very quiet and produced just a few Gulls. It Looks like 2011 is going to go out with a whimper.

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