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What was your Spark Bird???

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Old Wednesday 11th December 2019, 13:18   #1
Puffins4Life
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What was your Spark Bird???

"Spark Bird" being - The bird that helped spark your interest in birding. It helped open your eyes to the incredible beauty, mystery and excitement of birds and nature. It's a pivotal moment where your world is changed, and there's no way you are going back!

Mine was 100% the Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis).

How about everyone else??!!
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Old Wednesday 11th December 2019, 21:27   #2
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These, nesting in the local park in Denmark when I was staying with grandparents as a kid
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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 12:32   #3
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I had been birding for 3 or 4 years and spent a coupla weeks in Dorset legit and wild camping the latter usually in a pub beer garden (my Uncle would vouch for me). I was sat at the end of Portland Bill on a very foggy mid-April morning with just the honking lighthouse for company.....

Out of the mist came something totally unexpected - my first Hoopoe
It landed a few yards away and I was gobsmacked and got to musing howand where it originated. From then my passion for migration ignited This aspect has not diminished and i have managed to visit key hotspots in the Western Palearctic and will hopefully continue to do so - my ‘bucket list’ trip to Eilat this coming March has been finalised and the addition of WizzAir flying to Ramon is a bonus

Later that same day i flushed my first Wryneck from Chesil Beach along with a Spoonbill nearby (Lifer) and saw a small party of Black Terns at Radipole completing four ticks in, for me, a truly eye-popping day but it is the Hoopoe that sticks in my mind’s eye.

Laurie -
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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 12:47   #4
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I never had a "Spark Bird". As a child I spent most of my time in the woods or on the beach by myself. My interest in the natural world just developed from that, helped somewhat by my dad who was an expert all round naturalist. My interest in birds is just part of a wider interest in the world. There was no one pivotal moment when my world changed.
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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 13:58   #5
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I've been into wildlife since I was about 5 years old despite living in urban London + no family with such interests but I'm sure mine was sparked by feeding the ducks in a local park, so it was probably Mallard. I've always been passionate about wildfowl + have been a WeBS counter for probably over 30 years now.
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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 15:25   #6
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For me it has to be the Robin. My heart has a little flutter when I see a Robin. I went fishing one day and this Robin sat next to me for ages, looking at my tub of maggots, I put a few down and he came back and forth for a few minutes and ended with a song. Perfect day.
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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 16:19   #7
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There isn't a bird that got me into birding - it was general inquisitiveness about the things I saw around me coupled with a particular interest in nature - but the bird that got me into twitching was probably a Red-breasted Goose in the Hampshire Avon Valley and it's still a favourite species for me, a stunning looking goose.

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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 17:38   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farnboro John View Post
There isn't a bird that got me into birding - it was general inquisitiveness about the things I saw around me coupled with a particular interest in nature - but the bird that got me into twitching was probably a Red-breasted Goose in the Hampshire Avon Valley and it's still a favourite species for me, a stunning looking goose.

John
Ditto, I was amazed as a small boy, to find that I could go outside and see some of the things that I'd seen in my books.
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Old Thursday 12th December 2019, 19:55   #9
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I did not start with one specific bird, but became hooked (and the closest I got to twitching) when I did a 1 mile walk through Shirley Park in Birmingham to see a birch tree full waxwings - amazing!
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Old Friday 13th December 2019, 12:08   #10
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The Blackbird was the bird that got me interested, I loved its call and still do, it wasn't until much later I realised the yellow ring around the eye was feathers I thought their eyes were actually yellow. When I decided to make my website I choose The Blackbird as my logo for The Edinburgh Birdwatcher.
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Old Friday 13th December 2019, 13:09   #11
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I did not gave any bird to get me into birding, but I had a certainly defining moment when I went to twitch the Galcuous-winged Gull in Ireland - that's when I became interested in WP birding and WP rarities and that has really changed my birding. Some would say for the worse :) But it's quite motivating!
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Old Friday 13th December 2019, 13:30   #12
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Eurasian Golden Oriole.

I didn't even see it (back in 1995), only heard it and that song was enough to got me hooked.

I still have to see my first in Belgium sitting in a tree (only saw them on migration, or in other European countries).
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Old Friday 13th December 2019, 15:01   #13
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I'd stopped birding at about age 12 only got back into in my mid-twenties grandparents had moved to Filey and my granddad mentioned G N Diver he'd seen recently off the Brigg that sparked my re-interest.
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Old Friday 13th December 2019, 16:47   #14
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During a period of unemployment I began to take walks around the local fields to relieve the boredom of not working, one morning a Curlew flew over calling, I can still hear it now, that Curlew calling re-ignited my love of birding.
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Old Friday 13th December 2019, 17:08   #15
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Hello,

Long eared owls in Central Park.

Happy bird watching,
Arthur Pinewood
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Old Sunday 15th December 2019, 11:32   #16
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For me it would have to be the Eurasian jay

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Old Sunday 15th December 2019, 11:48   #17
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The Corn Bunting. I wonder if it would have happened with a more distinctive bird.

I asked someone "what is that bird?" about twenty times and every answer was "Corn Bunting", and to me they looked like different birds. A few months later, I was in Japan (with no birding in between) and had listed what I saw in an email, then realised how much I had learned just from that trip.

To me, trying to work out the bird and failing is still as rewarding as correctly identifying. Taking a bad photo of a bird still brings me the memory of the moment as much as a good photo. Watching a common bird going about a task can be just as nice as coming across a bird I had not seen before.
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