Monday, 15 March 2010

Jamaican vagrant

Tree Swallows (K. Hirabayashi)
Life's been pretty busy recently, as per usual. Since coming back from Extremadura it has been deadline after deadline plus I have the launch of the Tower 42 Bird Study Group happening a week on Friday.

Tonight, I made a rare appearance on BBC1's The One Show with a piece on the Red Kites in Gateshead in the northeast. It went down well with many people texting and emailing to say how much they enjoyed it.

Oh, and the reason for the Tree Swallow picture is quite simple. I'm reviewing a photographic guide to the birds of Jamaica which made me consult the trip list from my visit there in 2005. I soon discovered that I had seen no less than 4 national rarities including a female Green-winged Teal and a sole Caspian Tern whilst seawatching off Negril. Best of all were a couple of Cliff Swallows amongst the more abundant Tree and Cave Swallows. Apparently, Cliff Swallows have barely ever been seen on the island. It just goes to show that anything can turn up anywhere and wherever you are, always expected the unexpected.

I sent my records in at the time but they were never acknowledged. I resent them to the author of the book and had a reply the following day to thank me. It's good to submit your records no matter how irrelevant you may think that they are.

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