Even the most dedicated of birders, who will travel thousands of miles in pursuit of our feathered friends, have what we call a local patch, which is exactly as it is described.
Mine is Turls Hill, Sedgley. An enclave of green, surrounded by urban Black Country, as far as birds are concerned it isn’t going to set the ornithological world alight and that’s why I’ve never seen another birder there. It’s my local patch though, and for that reason alone, I love it.
Over the years I’ve seen merlin, raven, snipe and spotted flycatchers which, along with a goshawk passing over are the highlights. That’s why you need to be realistic with your local patch.
Set your sights too high and you’ll be disappointed. Be realistic and you’ll get something from it. My latest walk around Turls Hill produced the following, in order of appearance:
wood pigeon, magpie, robin, carrion crow, blackbird, common buzzard, great tit, chaffinch, dunnock, blue tit, great spotted woodpecker, house sparrow, collared dove, song thrush, blackcap, chiffchaff, wren, nuthatch (18)
There were also numerous butterfly species with lots of orange tips showing. It was a very warm, dry day and the butterfly population responded well.
Nothing special but I really enjoyed the walk and that’s what local patch birding is all about.
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