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Corona virus threat to birding

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Old Thursday 26th March 2020, 22:59   #776
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Originally Posted by Deb Burhinus View Post
Ok - it didn’t help that the RSPB link dates back to a blog entry about SEO sightings in February 2014

I suppose the issue is any group of 15 or so birders/photographers driving anywhere regardless of the location or the species of bird they go to look at, will be ‘sent home’ - it does all feel a little oppressive to be sure.
Apologies. I probably just confused it even more. Oppressive for a reason as I am sure we both agree. Stay safe and I hope you and your loved ones emerge safely from the other side.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 04:10   #777
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For anyone wishing to try and steer a way through the media spin, conflicting government statements, etc, the Statutory Instrument is now published - number 350 of 2020.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/350/made

Of course, none of that alters the need to stay at home and save lives.

All the best
I was waiting for some legislation which explicitly makes clear what restrictions are placed on exercise.

There are none but exercise is considered a reasonable excuse to leave the home to the same degree that shopping is, therefore, as I'm sure you can drive to the shop, you must be able to drive to your place of exercise.

There is also a failure to state how far you can travel to do these things and we are still left trying to determine what the limits are on the word 'essential'

As I work in food, I am commuting to work still. On that commute, a couple of miles detour will put me on a decent nature reserve to exercise.

This is my current plan and I can not see that this creates any additional risk to exercising near home (probably reduces it), nor does it seem to contravene this legislation.

Would love to hear others thoughts on this.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 05:33   #778
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I was waiting for some legislation which explicitly makes clear what restrictions are placed on exercise.

There are none but exercise is considered a reasonable excuse to leave the home to the same degree that shopping is, therefore, as I'm sure you can drive to the shop, you must be able to drive to your place of exercise.

There is also a failure to state how far you can travel to do these things and we are still left trying to determine what the limits are on the word 'essential'

As I work in food, I am commuting to work still. On that commute, a couple of miles detour will put me on a decent nature reserve to exercise.

This is my current plan and I can not see that this creates any additional risk to exercising near home (probably reduces it), nor does it seem to contravene this legislation.

Would love to hear others thoughts on this.
People are still interpreting the guidelines to suit themselves.

When asked to clarify the rules, an expert on the 'Beeb' said that driving anywhere for non essential reasons is out. The police are now using drones at some places so if you want to bend and test the rules, don't expect a whip round to help pay your fine. The time is close to seeing examples being made of rule breakers to deter others.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 06:42   #779
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Andy is right. You can try and apply logic to it but that doesn’t work but I understand the need for clarity, as was needed in France.

Here you are allowed to food shop, medical stuff, walking the dog, work (if you are going to work it has to be an ‘approved’ job that cannot be done at home - with proof that it cannot be executed at home), exercise is limited to one hour per day and within a 1km radius of your home, child care arrangements to support any of the above...

So if you are driving and divert you break the rules, if you are not in your car outside of these guidelines you are breaking the rules etc etc in France, Italy you have to sign a bit of paper with date and time that states what you are doing - on my honor. In England a police will ask you those questions - if he believes you you’re fine if he doesn’t you’re fined...
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 08:00   #780
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People are still interpreting the guidelines to suit themselves.

When asked to clarify the rules, an expert on the 'Beeb' said that driving anywhere for non essential reasons is out. The police are now using drones at some places so if you want to bend and test the rules, don't expect a whip round to help pay your fine. The time is close to seeing examples being made of rule breakers to deter others.
Hopefully common sense will deter the rule breakers!
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 08:03   #781
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Hopefully common sense will deter the rule breakers!
But unfortunately it doesn't in some cases.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 08:11   #782
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People here are making the reasonable point that driving down the road to bird on an empty common poses less of a threat to walking along a busy street to a busy park, which is self-evidently true. Unfortunately, nobody has time to establish and police rules that are individually tailored to suit everybody's own particular circumstances.

These rules apply to everybody, from the most reasonable and responsible birder to the sort of person who licks cans of food in supermarkets, deliberately coughs in the face of a police officer, or decides to have a BBQ party in a public place.

In this light, it's clearly not OK to detour on the way home from work to do some birding. An obvious element of an essential journey is that it doesn't have a discretionary non-essential element to it. If not, it leaves the door open for people to take the piss.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 09:22   #783
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RBA statement

This is interesting, conversation has been had about how the bird news services could withold information without breaking a contract, they may have found a way but not sure it will ever be tested?

I've put the interesting bit in bold but the bit in red seems to completely undo their original statement?

Covid-19: an update on our birdnews service.

I am pleased to report that all the RBA staff and their immediate families are, at this time, all well. They are all working in isolation from their homes, apart from Pete who is the only person looking after the office, a short cycle ride from his home. Many thanks Pete. If you need to contact RBA at the current time, please do so by email whenever possible. If you need to call the office and you get the answering machine, please leave a message and we will get back to you, it just may not be as quick as in normal times.

I hope that all of you, our customers, and all your loved ones, are well, and taking every possible precaution to stay that way.

Whilst it is not possible to travel for birding at this time, we are adapting the RBA news service to be more relevant to the current situation. We will report on the birds that it may be possible to see from your garden, your window, or as you walk around your neighbourhood.

So we are now featuring, and invite, more reports of the ‘commoner’ regular migrants than normal including any notable ‘visible migration’ (vismig) and also ‘nocturnal migration’ (nocmig) records. For example your garden records of species such as Firecrest, Redstart and Spotted Flycatcher are welcome, records of overflying Hobby and inland waders, and interesting nocmig records such as Common Scoters and Water Rails.

With this level of news you will have a much better idea of what may be possible to see each day at home, on a daily basis as spring progresses, if you are interested. The Bird Observatories and other premium sites around the country, where people are fortunate enough to live next door to great habitat, will continue to give another view of what is being seen and we will report this news to you.

But, and on this I wish to be quite clear, we do not want, nor will we wittingly disseminate news sourced from anyone not following Government advice concerning travel or social distancing. Please remember, the current advice on distancing is to only mix with members of your own household.

Be safe, keep up-to-date with the government advice, get off the couch if you have to, and enjoy some birding, and do it responsibly.

Last, but not least, if you, or anyone you know, is working on the frontline to beat this pandemic, be sure to thank them profusely from us all at RBA.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 10:19   #784
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This is interesting, conversation has been had about how the bird news services could withold information without breaking a contract, they may have found a way but not sure it will ever be tested?
It’s been many years since I studied law but the Public Interest element has high regard in jurisprudence- in other words, if anyone tried to sue a company for suspension of contract/withdrawal of services where it would not be in the public interest to continue the contract either in full or in part, I think it likely to override the existing terms. Likewise, where a contract is suspended and then deemed not to be in the public interest, the Courts will lift the suspension.

https://www.lexology.com/library/det...9-5d96a8af68e3

As an aside, I would think the Public Interest element will ride very high in the current crisis - there will be many situations (work, travel etc) where contracts have not been fulfilled or suspended - to ‘allow’ legal address for breaches of contracts as a result of the coronavirus would clearly open the floodgates to litigation, which has a tried and tested strong precedent in the Courts as not being in the public interest.


Quote:
I've put the interesting bit in bold but the bit in red seems to completely undo their original statement?
I don’t think anyone is suggesting stopping birding altogether and you are likely to see more in the garden or on a quick trot round the local park than from a sofa - I think that’s all they meant
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Whilst it is not possible to travel for birding at this time, we are adapting the RBA news service to be more relevant to the current situation. We will report on the birds that it may be possible to see from your garden, your window, or as you walk around your neighbourhood.
...
But, and on this I wish to be quite clear, we do not want, nor will we wittingly disseminate news sourced from anyone not following Government advice concerning travel or social distancing. Please remember, the current advice on distancing is to only mix with members of your own household.
It’s a good effort and RBA should be commended.

I agree the second paragraph is open to interpretation- ie if I, while responsibly socially isolating myself in my back garden, and I find an American Robin amongst the usual suspects, will RBA put the news out? If eg the news of the AR is disseminated only to subscribers living in walking distance, news of an AR in Norfolk would soon flood social media so one would have to assume not. I guess RBA will make case by case decisions using their experience as to value of bird v distance birder will travel for said bird - ie no one is going to be travelling to twitch common birds/migrants so it would be safe to disseminate news (and safe to disseminate very rare bird news from Obs/Islands which are all but inaccessible to non-staffers/locals anyway.)
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 10:36   #785
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ie if I, while responsibly socially isolating myself in my back garden, and I find an American Robin amongst the usual suspects, will RBA put the news out? If eg the news of the AR is disseminated only to subscribers living in walking distance, news of an AR in Norfolk would soon flood social media so one would have to assume not. I guess RBA will make case by case decisions using their experience as to value of bird v distance birder will travel for said bird - ie no one is going to be travelling to twitch common birds/migrants so it would be safe to disseminate news (and safe to disseminate very rare bird news from Obs/Islands which are all but inaccessible to non-staffers/locals anyway.)

Releasing exact whereabouts of any major (or even all) rarities is going to possibly lead to a temptation to some to 'misbehave', or may just 'look bad' overall. Don't see why there shouldn't be a policy between the rarity news disseminators and county bird clubs to withhold location of all rarities excepting for certain flyovers or already inaccessible birds (islands as mentioned).

Even if people can't get out, there s a massive interest in knowing what is out there and vicarious pleasure in seeing how spring progresses.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 10:42   #786
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Releasing exact whereabouts of any major (or even all) rarities is going to possibly lead to a temptation to some to 'misbehave', or may just 'look bad' overall...

Even if people can't get out, there s a massive interest in knowing what is out there and vicarious pleasure in seeing how spring progresses.
Maybe you misunderstood me but that’s what I was saying! I conclude that they wouldn’t put the news out if it’s of a bird people are likely to travel ie a rarity (unless its news from Obs/islands.) I was just clarifying the possible confusion raised by Andy

(and obviously my point also applies if released news would result in 15 local birders bunched together on ladders peering over the garden wall - even if they walked there to do it )
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 10:58   #787
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People are still interpreting the guidelines to suit themselves.

When asked to clarify the rules, an expert on the 'Beeb' said that driving anywhere for non essential reasons is out. The police are now using drones at some places so if you want to bend and test the rules, don't expect a whip round to help pay your fine. The time is close to seeing examples being made of rule breakers to deter others.
Andy

Is that guidelines or is that rules or is that the Statutory Instrument? I have rarely seen something so important drafted so badly.

In reality, none of that matters. Where possible, stay home and save lives. Further stay home and save yourself. The longer term health effects for survivors are unknown but the potential consequences are obvious.

Deepest best wishes to all
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 11:04   #788
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For Public Health England stats, this site:-

https://www.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashb...0b19484dd4bb14

Supplements the world picture:-

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

All the best
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 11:07   #789
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Maybe you misunderstood me but that’s what I was saying! I conclude that they wouldn’t put the news out if it’s of a bird people are likely to travel ie a rarity (unless its news from Obs/islands.) I was just clarifying the possible confusion raised by Andy

(and obviously my point also applies if released news would result in 15 local birders bunched together on ladders peering over the garden wall - even if they walked there to do it )
I was agreeing with you, and maybe expanding a tad
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 11:26   #790
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I was agreeing with you, and maybe expanding a tad
oh
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 11:27   #791
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Releasing exact whereabouts of any major (or even all) rarities is going to possibly lead to a temptation to some to 'misbehave', or may just 'look bad' overall.
This is why no rare bird news is being released in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Germany strangely (and imho somewhat irresponsibly) still happy to provide rare bird news - although crowds tend to be smaller anyway.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 11:48   #792
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It’s a good effort and RBA should be commended.
yes, it's 100 times better than the perception of them yesterday!
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 12:15   #793
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yes, it's 100 times better than the perception of them yesterday!
Looks like they were sharing the same advisor as Mike Ashley.
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Old Friday 27th March 2020, 18:28   #794
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Thanks Rich, that's reassuring! I don't even have broadband at home, our village went from totally useless speeds too to having fibre a couple of years ago, but I like to separate work from home, don't watch much telly, and could look stuff up on the phone on 4G if I really needed to.
Sorry KB. We’ve just had our slot cancelled. Back to painfully slow Broadband. Not the end of the world but very difficult for us both to work from home.

Rich
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Old Saturday 28th March 2020, 11:23   #795
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Sorry KB. We’ve just had our slot cancelled. Back to painfully slow Broadband. Not the end of the world but very difficult for us both to work from home.

Rich
That's bad luck, sorry to hear that - but I actually got mine fitted yesterday. Engineer phoned to say he might not be able to do it as not allowed inside properties, but he'd call and see if there was a workaround. Fortunately there was.

Nearest terminal is on a telegraph pole about 30m away, which connects to my phone line on the external living room wall. He replaced that with a fibre cable, while I took the old phone terminal off the wall and pulled what was left of the old wire through. I drilled out the old hole and he passed the new cable through. Wearing a new pair of disposable work gloves I fortunately had, and a Buff pulled up over my nose and mouth, I passed the end of the cable out to him to fit the terminal in the garden (whilst wearing disposable gloves), which he then left outside my patio door for me to collect.

At no time were we closer than 3m, he didn't enter the house, and we didn't touch the same surfaces with ungloved hands. It's not the neatest installation - I have about 2m of cable pulled through the wall, with the boxes resting on the floor - but I'm on a list for an engineer to call and tidy it up when this is over. Absolutely top class service from Openreach - an hour later I was having a videoconference meeting that I was originally meant to drive to Kent for!
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Old Saturday 28th March 2020, 11:38   #796
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That's bad luck, sorry to hear that - but I actually got mine fitted yesterday. Engineer phoned to say he might not be able to do it as not allowed inside properties, but he'd call and see if there was a workaround. Fortunately there was.

Nearest terminal is on a telegraph pole about 30m away, which connects to my phone line on the external living room wall. He replaced that with a fibre cable, while I took the old phone terminal off the wall and pulled what was left of the old wire through. I drilled out the old hole and he passed the new cable through. Wearing a new pair of disposable work gloves I fortunately had, and a Buff pulled up over my nose and mouth, I passed the end of the cable out to him to fit the terminal in the garden (whilst wearing disposable gloves), which he then left outside my patio door for me to collect.

At no time were we closer than 3m, he didn't enter the house, and we didn't touch the same surfaces with ungloved hands. It's not the neatest installation - I have about 2m of cable pulled through the wall, with the boxes resting on the floor - but I'm on a list for an engineer to call and tidy it up when this is over. Absolutely top class service from Openreach - an hour later I was having a videoconference meeting that I was originally meant to drive to Kent for!
Good stuff KB. I thinks it commendable they’re putting their staffs safety first.

Rich
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Old Saturday 28th March 2020, 12:15   #797
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The tv schedulers are having a laugh, I recorded a movie called 'Contagion' the other night.......

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1598778/

'Soon after her return from a business trip to Hong Kong, Beth Emhoff dies from what is a flu or some other type of infection. Her young son dies later the same day. Her husband Mitch however seems immune. Thus begins the spread of a deadly infection. For doctors and administrators at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, several days pass before anyone realizes the extent or gravity of this new infection. They must first identify the type of virus in question and then find a means of combating it, a process that will likely take several months. As the contagion spreads to millions of people worldwide, societal order begins to break down as people panic.'.............presumably, buying all the toilet rolls they could find.
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Old Saturday 28th March 2020, 13:01   #798
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The tv schedulers are having a laugh, I recorded a movie called 'Contagion' the other night.......

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1598778/

'Soon after her return from a business trip to Hong Kong, Beth Emhoff dies from what is a flu or some other type of infection. Her young son dies later the same day. Her husband Mitch however seems immune. Thus begins the spread of a deadly infection. For doctors and administrators at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, several days pass before anyone realizes the extent or gravity of this new infection. They must first identify the type of virus in question and then find a means of combating it, a process that will likely take several months. As the contagion spreads to millions of people worldwide, societal order begins to break down as people panic.'.............presumably, buying all the toilet rolls they could find.
Quite a highly rated film apparently. I haven't watched it yet. Its Wikipedia entry says: "The film received renewed popularity during the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic."
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Old Saturday 28th March 2020, 13:08   #799
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Quite a highly rated film apparently. I haven't watched it yet. Its Wikipedia entry says: "The film received renewed popularity during the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic."
One of the reasons c19 has had an impact on my birding - I’ve been watching repeating runs of Contagion on Netflix-

(Saw it at the cinema in 2011 with my Mum - I sat there using hand gel all through it and we both ran to the loos after to scrub our hands!)
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Old Saturday 28th March 2020, 17:59   #800
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Hopefully common sense will deter the rule breakers!
Unfortunately there are many people who think the rules don't aply to them, only a few hours ago I watched a couple who live next door head off with bags & a skateboard.

These selfish people are not just putting people at risk of death but also NHS workers who are doing an amazing job.

On the flip side there are many people who've set up Covid-19 support groups helping those who are at risk with shopping, prescriptions & other necessities.

We really do see the best & worst of behaviour during a crisis.

Btw, not having a go at you Pam.
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