Monday 18 January 2021

Onward and Upward

Today's weather forecast predicted a wet afternoon, so I bashed out some work this morning and then sat next to the estuary in my usual lunchtime spot. The Axe is currently hosting an Avocet, and I spotted it asleep among the far bank Black-tailed Godwits...

Avocet on the Axe

While mucking about with this photo I thought to myself, 'Hmm, it's almost monochrome. I wonder if it would look better in black and white?' So I duly processed it as such...

Avocet and Blackwits in B&W

...and realised it looks very similar! So, there's today's arty effort.

A good number of gulls, but apart from a single Med Gull I couldn't winkle out anything unusual. Eventually the rain started and I headed home. Which is possibly where I'll be for the next couple of days if the appalling forecast holds true.

So here we are in Lockdown 3, more than half-way through January, with a wet and windy spell imminent. So, probably more thinking time than birding time. Some of my fellow bloggers have been sharing plans and intentions, which is always food for thought. Some of those plans involve measuring, counting and recording, most of which I've been largely avoiding for a while now. Though I did keep a BWKM0 list in 2020. I plan to do so again this year, though I'm just going to call it a Garden List. Late this afternoon, during a break in the rain, I could hear a distant Song Thrush singing, which puts said list on a measly 22. The target to beat is 63. That total includes some real corkers, like Fulmar, Cuckoo, Greylag, and Nightjar for example, so naturally I thought it is going to be really hard to top...

On Saturday 9th January I spent some time freezing my bits off in the garden, skywatching. Among the handful of bits and bobs which flew over was an adult Common Gull. Considering how many there are on the coast right now, I wasn't in the slightest bit surprised. Still, I papped it for posterity...

Common Gull. The first of many garden dots in 2021, I hope.

...and thought no more of it.

Until now. Sitting here a few minutes ago I suddenly had a nagging thought.

Sure enough, a quick check of my 2020 list reveals a big gap where Common Gull ought to be. Hard to believe maybe, but I didn't knowingly see one from the garden last year. I didn't start the list until March 22nd, but even so...

Anyway, that's one way to extract a bright note from a dull, wet afternoon. Common Gull. Yay! Onward and upward!


  1. Replies
    1. I keep him on a tight leash though! 😄

    2. Mine is on a very long extendable lead. The Prof rampages unrestricted!

    3. Yep, the Prof is three fields away and still going...