Avon BTO

Monday, November 17, 2008

Grey November

17 days and 18 tetrads done on line, and of course more, probably, on paper. 105 to go.
And my advice is, get the first survey done before the Christmas rush sets in. A lot of observers last year left everything to the post Christmas holiday, then had trouble in February, leaving a month between counts, finding the time. Incidentally remember that the figure used for each species is the maximum of the two counts; so dont be too concerned if you feel November counts are rather low- the January one can always boost them.
Initial impressions are a lot of LT, and rather few BT and GT; a lot of FF and rather few RE.
Fewer WP than last year, and perhaps fewer CD; a lot of SG- but its all very early days. Also there will be no easy way to compare the two winters, as the results will simply be summed by 10km square. This is rather different from the last winter Atlas, which had three very different winters, and for some species produced strongly different results.
Feral species. Please count anything that is free-winged- I have had three lots of Helmeted Guinea Fowl, I am pleased to say. It is worth trying to distinguish between wild Mallard and various odd mallards that have crossed with farm ducks, or whatever. And put in Roving records for any Parakeets, Egyptian Geese etc. Because we cannot know what species may take off in the next twenty years it is important not to ignore anything- not even Feral pigeon- and they have not been proved to breed in every 10k square yet.
I keep saying it, but verification is due to start any day, and you may get a note asking whether you are sure it was a lesser crested whatsit, and you are certain it bred in the tetrad. And please note I cant change any of your records. I have your username but not your password- only you can do that via "Edit my records"
Richard Bland


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