Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Getting twitchy

Our thoughts, and those of Bird Watching columnist David Lindo, AKA The Urban Birder, have been turning to twitching these last couple of days.

The reason? A Dusky Warbler - London's first - discovered at Lockwood Reservoir, Walthamstow. It's around the allotments on Black Horse Road, E17, if any of you are interested in going after it. So far, the weather has stymied David, but we don't reckon he'll resist temptation for too much longer.

It's another sign that spring's on the way. In early January, it's easy to vow only to bird your local patch this year, but the closer the spring migration period gets, the more you start to think: "Well, maybe I'll twitch the odd county rarity".

We'll be looking at the psychology of twitching, and of birdwatching more generally, in the magazine in the near future, but what are your thoughts on it? Where do you draw the line? And what birds might lure you into a madcap overnight motorway dash to the other end of the UK?


Anonymous said...

I recently met a birder who had just found a rarity. He and his friend were off to look for it again, and apart from looking forward to seeing it, they were excited that if it was rare, it would "put them on the map". This competitive nature of twitching is why I do not attend large twitches.

The Dusky is less than 15 minutes drive from me, but I will not be going to see it. The Slavonian Grebe also at Lockwood Reservoir today would be of far more interest, as it is an attractive and normal part of the British fauna - and doesn't draw the hunting packs!

Bewdley Birds said...

People should do as they please as long as nobody else is put out in the process. I believe people shouldn't succumb to stereotypes. Go out and enjoy what birds you see everyone!