Saturday, 23 October 2010

Pallid Harrier Tick?

Got back from a holiday to the Scilly Isles and south-west late last night, i will do a full report soon. Highlights including Tawny Pipit, Melodious Warbler, American Golden Plover, Red-eyed Verio, Subalpine Warbler, Red-flanked Bluetail, Green Heron, Squacco Heron and Cattle Egret, plus many commoner birds giving great views.

Catching up on the blogs and websites i was surprised to see a retrospective ringtail Pallid Harrier reported at Holme. This has created a dilemma for me, i was at Holme and saw the bird, noting it down as a probable Montagu's Harrier, but not giving it much attention, before concentrated on looking for 'rarer' migrants. The bird has now been re-identified from photos, so do i have a new tick, or is this just a lesson in being more attentive?


  1. No mention of it only being a 'probable' Montagu's Harrier in your report at the time!

  2. Well like i said i didn't pay the Harrier that much attention, at the time i just assumed it was a Montagu's. I was more interested in trying to find the Great Grey Shrike that was about.

  3. Your getting desperate for ticks your last few reports seem to be getting more dodgy, I was at Wells the same day when you had the Red Breasted Fly??? Try reporting your rarities, Your Flycatcher Twitch you saw Leach's??? but not just leach's it was without any equipment how could you tell it wasnt a House Martin, Storm Petrel or are you unlucky a zinos wasnt reported in yorkshire otherwise another tick could enter your list, maybe I am Crazy but there is no way on Earth that you could Identify a petrel in those conditions without bins, No Dicks pips reported at holme the day you saw yours? a place full of birders? and you didnt put the news out, your lucky I saw the Happisburgh bird with alot of other birders that had mentioned your holme bird, as for the Harrier go on count it, it will be on the same par as the other ticks - just desperate ticks, you manage to see everything you go for why not things you didnt even look at. Have you ever heard of the boy that cried wolf? Just remember this is a public blog and people read it and probably laugh at what they had missed.

  4. I feel that's a bit harsh! While at Wells i got another birder onto the RB Fly as i've previously said, i don't walk around ignoring everyone i see. Ok so i don't ring everything in but i don't see most birders calling RBA. If what you say is all true, i am only cheating myself!

  5. If i would have given the Harrier a bit more attention maybe i could have ticked it, but with a nonchalant, dismissive look at the bird i can't really claim much. Good luck to the photographer and people that reidentified it though.

  6. The bird hasn't been officially accepted as anything yet.

    Just because birds aren't reported doesn't mean they aren't gen, though in this case I do wonder! It's better to get someone to confirm finds until you have built up a degree of credibility. If people have to twitch a Richard's though they need to get out a bit more and find one. There's been several not on the pagers already.

    Yes, there are loads of dodgy reports out there (see the amazing number of fuckups that were photographed this year with people too keen to go public) and especially on blogs - with odd claims and some downright hilarious stuff. Makes for great reading though. On the downside RBA trawl the blogs and put any old shit out and these records are passed on to the Bird Report and included without any vetting - not a good thing, so more care should be taken all round.

    Anyway, tick it if you want but the fact you're asking tells its own story.