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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 14:52   #76
marek_walford
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew
The world's rarest bird comes to the UK and only twenty turns up!
Can't help thinking this story is going exactly the same way as last time. I'm amazed more people haven't gone for insurance purposes. I don't think many people have said it is definitely a runt Curlew/Oriental/Slender-billed/whatever. Does anybody know of anybody who has seen the bird and can categorically rule either species out on specific features?
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 14:57   #77
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The current view at Minsmere today is that this bird is a Slender-billed Curlew. That has come from the world's leading expert on them who has travelled from Belgium to see it. Of course there are plenty of white hot birders that are just as convinced that it isn't one - some that have seen it and others that have only seen piccies.

To put it quite simply

GO THERE NOW...

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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 15:24   #78
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Have just heard the same thing - have a feeling that Minsere could be kinda busy this weekend - especially if one of the info/pager services puts it out as a confirmed ID....
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 15:56   #79
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The term "He who hesitates...." comes to mind! Twitcher or not, go and see one of the rarest birds in the world, especially as it's on your own doorstep.
After you're all happy with it, get a bick stick and hunt it in the direction of Ireland...please!!!

Best of luck to anyone who goes and nice to see that SBC's have (apparently) successfully bred somewhere this year!
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 16:00   #80
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Good luck to all who go.
I look forward to reading why you all ticked it.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 16:11   #81
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If I go at all it will be to help the good people at Minsmere marshal the visitors but please say "hello" if you see me anyway. If I get to see the bird it will be a bonus but good luck to anyone planning a trip over the w/e. I am praying for a strike of Manx Airlines (BA partners) cabin staff over the w/e.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 16:20   #82
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 17:07   #83
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Talking

So what is the general consensus, go on someone stick their neck out. Except Chris obviously Yay or nay? Cos thats a long journey for a runt curlew
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 17:27   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
So what is the general consensus, go on someone stick their neck out. Except Chris obviously Yay or nay? Cos thats a long journey for a runt curlew
Personally, having seen it, I came away thinking I'd just seen sbc... others who I have spoken to (inc. some of the staff) also seem to think this. Apparently the guy who said it today is a world expert on sbc...

I'd say it's to big a risk not to make the journey.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 18:08   #85
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Watched the footage on 'Look East'....
The birders they interviewed seemed to think it was SBC,
including the guy from Belgium.
There was some film of the bird with a Curlew behind it
and it certainly looked different...
I just hope it hasn't flown off...cos I really wanna see it now!

Sleeping with me pager Dave.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 18:12   #86
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I've not looked that hard at the pics... but even so I don't think it is one.. if it were local I'd go and see it for education processes.

What would interest me is are any of the people who "consider this to be a juv going to 1st winter SBC" are people who saw the Northumberland bird
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 18:18   #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jane Turner
I've not looked that hard at the pics... but even so I don't think it is one.. if it were local I'd go and see it for education processes.

What would interest me is are any of the people who "consider this to be a juv going to 1st winter SBC" are people who saw the Northumberland bird
I know the amount of work that went into assessing the SBC in Northumberland. It was gone into in quite phenomenal detail because of the conservation implications and I am absolutely sure that the original observer and the person involved in the compilation of the report considered every single possibility. I'm sure the Druridge bird was a SBC - and no, I didn't see it, I don't British list. I am just convinced of the sincerity and accuracy of the assessment.

FWIW, the compiler of the Druridge report thinks that the evidence points towards the Minsmere bird being SBC (last I heard he hadn't seen it, but he was being consulted as the Brit who probably knows as much as anyone about ID). Taken with the opinion of the Belgian expert, if I was a British lister I'd be there tomorrow.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 18:29   #88
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Are there any better pics of it available yet?
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 18:31   #89
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I don't know for sure and won't 'tick' it on someone else's say so. .....shame it's being talked about in 'insurance' terms etc....could be one of the world's rarest birds we're on about here.

If Jimmy Steele reckons it could be then like Mike says he's read a lot of stuff on it. Good first bird for my mate Adam who's just taken over wardening at Minsmere....he should be able to get some good notes too and seeing as he's BBRC it might make assessment of this one a little bit speedier.

I am tempted though.....
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 19:42   #90
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I watched this bird y'day 30/9 for an hour.

It was seen today by many people, including the Belgian birder
Didier Vangeluwe (who co-wrote the BB paper on the Duridge Bird, BB
95: 279-299, and co-wrote the Identification paper in Dutch Birding
10: 45-53). His opionion (i have been informed, and per comments on
Look East News this evening) is that it is most likely a 1st-winter
female SLENDER-BILLED CURLEW.

In the field, this bird is more striking than the photos suggest -
and is worth seeing, however, it flew out to sea at 18.03hrs with 2
Eurasain Curlew (maybe off to roost somewhere?).

The bird does show good features for SBC, and would fit a 1st-w
female (although, obviously, i have no field experience of this
species, and my knowledge is gleamed from literature). I don't know
if i would go as far as putting my neck on the line, but one
question worth considering: why is it not a SBC? The worst thing
going for it is that it's in Suffolk!

Maybe the rarity status of this species is partly due to the fact
that people don't know what to look for with this species. If this
bird is a SBC (a theory i am beginning to lean towards), then other
immatures may have been missed before, simply because the perception
of what a SBC looks like is clouded by the more obvious adult male
photos from Morroco.

The problem with these two species (Eurasian and Slender-billed) is
that they are both highly variable, with some over lap in features &
measurements, and that there really is no diagnostic features on non-
breeding or immature birds. I feel it will come down to a whole
suite of features being taken in an objective manner.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 19:44   #91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Yay or nay? Cos thats a long journey for a runt curlew
A bit of an odd comment that Hotspur. Who is to say where the bird came from if it is a runt Curlew.
All I can say is that it doesn't look like the SBCs I've seen in the, admitteldy poor, photographs.
And (here's a turn up) I agree with Tim, it's a real shame that people are talking about insurance ticks. These people don't seemed to have grasped the concept of what it means in terms of the species. If it is proved to be a Slender-bill, then it's also a disaster for the species.
I hope it isn't one.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 19:44   #92
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A lot of people are saying this is a genuine SBC, I think this can be confirmed as the
little --------- has flown out to sea at 18:03. (Birdguides)

Should have skipped work this afternoon.

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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 19:57   #93
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[quote=ground-roller]So no evidence that its Orientalis?
Just got back from the bird - distinctly under-whelmed - although fairly distant views there appeared to be few supporting features for slender-billed curlew as oppossed to runty curlew QUOTE]

Sure you were looking at the right bird?!? I could name many features pro-SBC - namingly; Size, bill length and shape, tail pattern, underpart colouration and pattern (or shape) of spots/ovals on left flank, dark crown appearance, dark loral area, slightly more obvious supercilium, overall pale ness, very white underwing!! Question: Why isn't it a SBC?

Also, the term 'runt' or runty'! where did this come from? Somebody point me in the direction of a reference to 'runt' curlews! I think people need to just have a perception of how variable numenius sp. can be. Do 'runt' birds really exist? How many 'runt' birds have people come across in their normal day to day birding? In 16 years of birding. I've seen no 'runt' birds.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:01   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CJW
A bit of an odd comment that Hotspur. Who is to say where the bird came from if it is a runt Curlew.
All I can say is that it doesn't look like the SBCs I've seen in the, admitteldy poor, photographs.
And (here's a turn up) I agree with Tim, it's a real shame that people are talking about insurance ticks. These people don't seemed to have grasped the concept of what it means in terms of the species. If it is proved to be a Slender-bill, then it's also a disaster for the species.
I hope it isn't one.
How is it a disaster? It would mean the species bred somewhere this year. An event not proven ANYWHERE since 1997 (an event as rare as its occurence rate in Britain!)

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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:16   #95
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It's a disaster because a significant %age of the offspring have got lost and will not, presumably, be able to breed in future.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:19   #96
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Unless of course east Uk is miraculously on the route between an hitherto unknown breeding ground and wintering ground! Assuming of course that it is one.. Is it my memory.... or was there a second small Curlew in Northumberland at the time of the SBC?
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:19   #97
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If it is proved to be a Slender-bill, then it's also a disaster for the species.
Surely it must mean there are more about than we previously imagined - there no way one would turn up in England if there really are only a few dozen left in the world...
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:19   #98
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I'd call that a shame, not a disaster. A disaster would be if another is not reported anywhere in the Western P in the future. A disaster would be if the species becomes extinct.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:21   #99
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Pedantry.
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Old Friday 1st October 2004, 20:22   #100
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jane Turner
Unless of course east Uk is miraculously on the route between an hitherto unknown breeding ground and wintering ground! Assuming of course that it is one.. Is it my memory.... or was there a second small Curlew in Northumberland at the time of the SBC?
Yes a second bird was seen, see BB 95: 279-299 for details, but it was identified as a Eurasian Curlew
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