29 March, 2010

I hate Mondays.... AKA The Dip List

Firstly, I'd like to bid a fond farewell to one of the Shining Examples who prompted me to start blogging - Gav Haig has declared he is stopping his [justly] famous Not Quite Scilly blog. Personally I think its a tragedy, and we're the poorer for our loss, but you never know, he might just be back. [Here's hoping!]

Having been good and spent most of today looking for gainful employment [no such luck - unless you're a chef, a cleaner, a store manager, or are willing to commute 30 miles for minimum wage] my thoughts have turned to dipping.

Ok, so the Alpine Swift debacle and the fact its Monday haven't helped.

Anyway, I've been thinking about something young master Ray came up with a while back - the Dip List. Never mind what you've seen, what have you missed? More flexible than a List list, as you can only Tick a bird once, but you can dip it forever [especially if its a *%£@*§%%* Alpine Swift]. Not just Life Dips, but Brit Dips, Devon Dips [though that last one specially sounds like it should involve raspberry jam... Mmmmh, raspberry jam................] Ahem. I'm back.

I have a not-very-long but I think noble history of dipping - indeed my very first proper twitch ended in a particularly nasty dip.

As a comparative newcomer to the twitching scene, my first twitch and first dip was the Broad-billed Sand at Dawlish Warren. I've just looked it up and it was summer 2004 - not quite 6 years. Seems longer somehow. People there before me saw it, people there after me saw it. I didn't. What can I say? I was trying to pick it out and there wasn't anybody there already on it to help. I like to think I'd get it if the situation recurred. Certainly an early lesson in 'No such thing as too much help' - I was probably looking in the wrong place.. ;) Back then I was a very infrequent, local twitcher. Things have changed a bit since then - swanning off to london after Shrikes and things... Tut tut. [Ok, that was a special occasion, and its not like I'm always off to east anglia..::coff::]

Ladies, Gentlemen, and Joe. For your entertainment and mockery, may I present a list of what I've dipped and how many times I've dipped them.

Bewick's Swan x1
Whooper Swan x1
Greenland White-fronted Goose x1
Eurasian White-fronted Goose x1
Mandarin x3
American Wigeon x4
Garganey x5
Green-winged Teal x1
Falcated Duck x1
Ring-necked Duck x3
Smew x2
Hooded Merganser x1
Cattle Egret x3 [2013 and it carries on!]
Purple Heron x2
White Stork x2
Glossy Ibis x3
Osprey x5 [I'd forgotten about Ospreys - worse than even Ring-necks and Waxwings in their day for the 5 minute rule]
Red-footed Falcon x1 [Yes, its June and I'm still updating this!]
Gyr x1 [Not technically a dip, but I count my parents refusing to take me to see the Berry Head bird on account of how much it still hurts.]
Great Bustard x1
Little Crake x1
Black-winged Stilt x2
Stone-curlew x2 [Ok, not technically dips, but here on hurt value, like the Gyr]
Little Ringed Plover x1
Kentish Plover x9 [They don't exist, I'm sure of it!]
Broad-billed Sandpiper x1
Temminck's Stint x1
Buff-breasted Sandpiper x2
Pectoral Sandpiper x2
American Herring Gull x1
Audouin's Gull x1
Kumlien's Gull x2 [Updates continue into 2012...]
Glaucous Gull x1
Little Tern x3
Gull-billed Tern x3
Long-eared Owl x1
Short-eared Owl x3
Bee-eater x1 [Technically a drop not a dip, as heard but not seen, but for hurt value this is number one..]
Alpine Swift x4
Hoopoe x1
Richard's Pipit x1
Pechora Pipit x1
Citrine Wagtail x2
Waxwing x4
Siberian Stonechat x1
Black-throated Thrush x1
Barred Warbler x1
Lesser Whitethroat x2
Sardinian Warbler x1
Subalpine Warbler x1
Savi's Warbler x1 [Though heard and thus yeartickable {if I was yearlisting} - how wrong is that?!?]
Melodious Warbler x1
Hume's Warbler x2 [Mutter mutter.. Also heard, but not yearticked as I'm too annoyed with it]
Radde's Warbler x1
Dusky Warbler x1
Yellow-browed Warbler x3
Pallas' Warbler x3
Bearded Tit x2
Red-backed Shrike x1
Great Grey Shrike x2
Chough x1
Hawfinch x2
White-throated Sparrow x1

This includes only when I was specifically twitching a bird, not searching a known area [thus the lack of Lesser Pecker]. Some I got on later attempts, some were sub-lists, a fair few I still haven't seen. I'm sure I've forgotten a few [or blanked the memories as too painful..].
Finally, the tally of those Dipped Birds I've still never seen is currently;  11

Right then, now that I've amused you, two more things;

Firstly, Mr. Blackcap is still about [I'm now waiting for him to start singing!]

Secondly, I hereby dare you, dear reader, if you have a blog, to do as I've done and publish your Dip List! I know two of you at least have no excuses... ;D Go on, you know you wanna!

P.S. I am continuing to come back to this post to update my Dip List as appropriate - far too often for my liking! :(

PPS. Its November 2011 and still the updates come.. Drat. I hate Pallas' Warblers....
PPPS   2013 and on we go....
PPPPS  I've just looked at this in 2024 and I have to admit I still need 6 of these. I haven't added every new dip to the list as there aren't enough pixels on your screen...

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