This blog is about my birding exploits, which mainly take place in the Weymouth/Portland area, in Dorset. Will also include stuff from elsewhere, plus some other critters too. Hope you enjoy. All photographs are © Brett Spencer, unless indicated otherwise. The above image is of a Siberian Rubythroat, taken in Holland in 2016.

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Now, That's What I Call Bad Luck

 Let's start with that poll.

So, the Dorset bird of the month, as voted by you, was the Hoopoe at Hamworthy. Well done to the finder of this bird.

Here are the final results.

The Glossy Ibis at Christchurch Harbour got 4% of the vote.
The Pink-footed Goose at Holmebridge got 4% of the vote.
The Hoopoe at Hamworthy got 34% of the vote.
The Tundra Bean Geese at Longham Lakes got 17% of the vote.
The Siberian Lesser Whitethroat at Weymouth got 26% of the vote.
The Common Rosefinch at Broadstone got 13% of the vote. 

As with all things voted for by the public, the right choice is not necessarily the right answer. Sure, the Hoopoe was probably the most widely appreciated rare bird of the month, but a winter Hoopoe in Dorset is not an unprecedented occurrence. I suspect people voted with their hearts and not with their heads. For me, the bird of the month was the Common, oh, how I hate that word, let's say Scarlet, yes, Scarlet Rosefinch. Ok, it hasn't been widely viewed, but that's not the point here. It's an exceptional record and unprecedented in Dorset to have one wintering. Strangely, even the Tundra Bean Geese got more votes, as did the Siberian Lesser Whitethroat. What does this teach us? Well, it's not necessarily the bird we saw that deserves the vote, but the best record that deserves recognition. Well done to all the finders of these birds and thanks to the people who took time to vote.


On the 31st January I was made redundant and I'm, at present, out of work. Maybe, somebody reading this blog could provide me with work, I'd certainly be very grateful. 

So, luck is not on my side at the moment, but when we talk about bad luck, I must mention my good friend Fred. Last Sunday, whilst dog walking and birding at Portland Bill, he jumped over a puddle and slipped. Not so bad you may think, but on landing, he landed awkwardly and broke his leg in 3 places. Now, that's what I call bad luck. But worse than that, because of his leg, he had to cancel his birding holiday to Israel in March. How cruel is that, a double whammy of bad luck.

Drama at Portland. © Martin Cade

There's Fred just peeking over the cockpit. © Martin Cade

And off he goes to hospital in style. © Martin Cade

Holy crap, that's not good.

All fixed up with a plate and pins.

Wishing you a speedy and successful recovery buddy.

Yesterday, my wife and I popped over to Ian's, who'd trapped and ringed a female Great Spotted Woodpecker.

And here she is, before being released successfully. © Karen Spencer

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