Sunday, 22 December 2013


2013 has seen my birding appetite continue with a new high year list of 285 beating 2012 by 6 birds.
I managed to see 23 lifers including the Brunnich's Guillemot at Portland, Dusky Thrush in Margate, The Caspian Tern in Staffs, Cirl Bunting, Lesser Yellowlegs and Pied-billed Grebe in Devon, my first Dotterel was seen in Berkshire, whilst Scotland delivered Ptarmigan and Capercaillie. The year delivered Scottish, Parrot and Two-barred Crossbills, Black Kite was another first whilst I enjoyed my first Savi's, Melodious and Dusky Warblers. Roller made an appearance on my list for the first time along side Lesser Grey Shrike. The Pacific Swift at Trimley presented me with another rarity and a trip to the Isle of Wight delivered good views of my first ever Wilson's Phalarope. I was lucky enough to get down to Kent just in time to see the Black-winged Pratincole back in June and one of only a handful to connect with this rare visitor moving my life list to 335. If I had to chose a best bird from the above I think I'd pick the Capercaillie as the encounter was just magical.

I've visited many counties again and some wonderful reserves. My Holidays have taken me to Wales and Scotland again and the bird encounters will live long with me and the Jims.

The local patch work didn't really get going as I just can't help getting to the coast at every opportunity and find birding in Kent and Norfolk far more rewarding than on the local fields etc. I can't see this changing much in 2014 if I'm honest. I invested in new camera kit this year and have enjoyed some nice encounters with all manner of wildlife and been lucky to capture some of those moments in mega-pixels.

I include here a few of my favorite bird photographs of 2013.

Red-backed Shrike
Long-tailed Tit
Long-eared Owl
Stone Curlew
Black Redstart
Rose-coloured Starling
2013 Lifers
Wishing everybody a happy Christmas and healthy 2014 with some excellent birding thrown in for good measure.
(Updated on 28th December)


  1. some magical shots with your new camera....... the detail and clarity is fantastic ( but what do I know lol) looking forward to sitting in the warm and seeing what's new for you in 2014.

  2. Thanks Tilly, have a good one.