In Praise of Common Birds

I do not remember the first bird I saw. I can’t really remember what got me into birds, though it probably had something to do with an I-Spy Book of Birds my uncle gave me.  Looking back at that book now 40 years on the things I saw in my village.  Tree sparrow 1st January in the garden.

However, I do remember the first bird I saw with my own scope- Bushnell Spacemaster costing about £145.  The first bird was a Skylark on the Eye Field at Cley.  It was at that point I realised you needed good optics not to see further but to appreciate the detail and subtlety of feather tracts and how many different browns there are.

i still love Skylarks for that one encounter as the bird you are seeing now is not just that bird it is a composite of all the times you have seen that bird; in real life and in books.  So when I added this weeks only new bird, Skylarks singing over town moor in amongst my many thoughts I went back to that bird at Cley.

Later I managed to add Skylark to tetrad z as a couple flew over.

There are not going to be hundreds of species in NZ26 and there aren’t thousands of individuals of any given species.  It was quite early on I had a message from someone saying that I should have picked a more interesting 10km square!  But birding includes the common species while they are still available.


2 thoughts on “In Praise of Common Birds

  1. Hiya, Well said! Our trip to Spain and the flocks of birds we saw there (sparrows, larks etc) just brings home how much we’ve lost in this country. Nothing should be taken for granted. Liking your blog more and more – keep up the good work.  I’ve posted a few pics from Extremadura here…. Had some good birds over the past few days with Garganey at Cley, RL Buzzard and Water Pipit yesterday at Halvergate/Buckenham. I will blog it sometime soon. CheersBaz


    1. Great to see you photos and trip report cant wait til we go.
      Like you I expect to see a lot of new birds but seeing the rock bunting reminds me I do need that badly.


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