Saturday, 29 August 2015

Coastal South - July 2015

Paul Freestone adds three points and jumps to 108% thanks to some glorious #patchgold in the form of a Kingfisher - a new bird for his Gwithian patch. Andy Rhodes failed to add but stayed in second place while Peter Hazelwood makes slow progress to 96%. Will he break through 100% in August?

Joe Stockwell, who runs the rule over the Weymouth reserves, stays top of the pops after another decent month with five points added this time. Such exotica as Wood Sandpiper and Crossbill managed to grace his list which keeps him clear of Sean Foote who couldnt make inroads at the top. Paul Bowerman just manages to hold on to third spot thanks to a Ruff. Ilya Maclean makes his play for the podium with a Cory's Shearwater on his Lizard patch plus a handful of Pomarine Skuas. Roger Musgrove in North Somerset managed to add both Red-necked Phalarope and Quail this month which were perhaps the highlights. Roger incidentally along with Dick Best are the beneficiaries of some incredible habitat creation on their patches with the new Steart WWT reserves which could turn up something outstanding before too long.

Estuarine - July 2015

Ed Keeble adds a single double pointer which extends his lead in the comparative table to 11%. Shaun Robson manages to overtake Gordon Hodgson to move into second spot despite no highlights... 

Paul Sullivan reinforces his grip on the Estuarine minileague adding 6 points including White-winged Black Tern whilst his fellow patchers failed to make headway. John Badley and Dave Craven stay static but maintain position in second and third respectively. Howard Vaughan in fifth is the only member of the upper echelons to make ground after recording a London Pomarine Skua. There weren't a huge number of additional finds with a couple of Yellow-legged Gulls proving the best of it.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Coastal East Anglia - July 2015

Only a handful of scores were recieved for July in Coastal East Anglia but nearly all of them had something good to contribute. Craig Fulcher adds a further 3% to his score thanks to Little Gull and Velvet Scoter and he is now only 12 points from matching his comparative mark. Tommy Corcoran closes the gap from Ryan Irvine to 0.2% thanks to an Osprey on his Great Yarmouth patch. Ryan 

Nige Lound at Gib Point had a trio of highlights which boosted his score and keep him in first place. A Roseate Tern took pride of place but his first patch Black Tern since 2011 and first patch Quail since 2007 also get mentioned in dispatches. James Brown at North Lowestoft reclaims second spot thanks to a self found Marsh Warbler while zero points for Robert Smith at Holme means he drops into third. Finally, Rob Hall at Halesworth to Dunwich managed to get himself finders points for a Bee-eater.

Inland East Anglia - July 2015

Ben Moyes continues his fine run of form to add 6% to his already mighty score for his Gipping Valley patch. This month he added Osprey, Black-tailed Godwit and Crossbill whilst his close rival, Nick Robinson, managed a solitary point for Sand Martin. Ben Rackshaw in third did not manage to add to his score and so he finds his place in third under threat by Jim Bradley who is only 4% behind and sits on the brink of 100%. 

Black-tailed Godwit - Ben Moyes

Jamie Wells manages to extend his lead to 11 points but it could have been so much sweeter! A July lesser golden plover usually turns out to be a Pacific GP but sadly for Jamie it remains a non-specific GP as a brief visitor to Paxton Pits evaded identification. Luckily for him Ben Lewis failed to capitalize on this and remains on the same score as in June.  Ashley McElwee manages to leapfrog Ben Rackshaw and move into third thanks to a flocks of Whimbrel and a flyover Greenshank. Nick Moran in fifth managed to break the 10 thousand record mark for Birdtrack. Good work Nick!

Coastal Scotland - July 2015

Stephen Welch is top of the Coastal Scotland comparative minileague once again and adds a single point in July. Jim Dickson moves into scond, 6% adrift but having added 5% in July including a self found Ring-billed Gull and 4 Ruff which are less than annual on his Crinan Canal patch. Chris Hill drops to third thanks to a blank month.

The Ring-billed Gull also helps Jim to consolidate his lead at the top of the points table with a ten point cushion. Not too much to overcome but it will take a good month to overhaul him immediately. Mike Hodgkin in second has a blank month while Chris Rodger takes a break from the Ashes to secure a Little Stint and third place. The only other bonus points this month would perhaps get sniffed at further south but a Great White Egret for Jonathan Clarke is a very decent record for Scotland and a welcome Dorothy for him (enough cricket puns already! - ed.).

Jonathan Clarke also managed Curlew Sandpiper in July.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Inland North - July 2015

Keith Dickinson closes in on Nick Tonge as the Leeds suburban patches fight for the overall comparative lead. Nick failed to add anything but keeps a 2% buffer. Too much time in the hills causes James Common's challenge to faulter as he drops to fourth with Steven Ward at Hawes replacing him on the rostrum after a bumper month including two patch seconds in the form of Marsh Harrier and Stonechat.

Patchgold for Steven Ward - a Marsh Harrier at Hawes

No points for the top three mean that Darren Starkey's lead in the Points minileague remains the same. Unlike some of the other players in this division Darren isn't particularly vocal in backing his challenge but a little birdie tells me that his latest recruit has been tasked with ensuring that Fairburn stays top of Inland North. Tom Lowe is in joint third now after adding seven points in July including a Wood Sandpiper and a Caspian Gull. Other highlights from within the fiercely contested minileague include two Bee-eaters over a retail park for Phil Woolen which sneak into his Backford Cross patch and are a superb record inland. Adam Moan managed to notch a Scaup at RSPB Geltsdale which must have been a shock whilst Chris Bradshaw had two Cranes at Potter Brompton Carr in the Vale of Pickering. Mark Reeder lists Bill Aspin sliding out of the top 10 as his highlight - ouch! But we all know where karma gets you as Bill will show with his next update.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Inland South - July 2015

The top three patches failed to make any additions in the Comparative minileague in the Inland South and Neil Burt at Conningbrook managed to close right in thanks to a breeding plumaged Black-necked Grebe. Ten competitors are over 88% and there is only a 17% spread across these so it really is open for anybody to take the win here.

Lee Evans' Pectoral Sandpiper from Wilstone Reservoir

Tom remains top in the points league despite no additions as mentioned above. Lee Evans moves into second place amongst a pack of four patchers over 140 points thanks to a Pectoral Sandpiper which banks him 6 points (and also netted Ian Bennell three points). Nigel Milbourne managed the find of the month with the moulting drake Lesser Scaup gaining him a tasty dozen at Blagdon. Having seen this bird last year I can attest to the difficult in picking it out as it goes through eclipse so hearty congratulations to Nigel.