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Comparing the British list to other countries (1 Viewer)

kb57

Well-known member
Europe
Does the distance from the equator have an effect? For instance a far higher proportion of Mexico's birds recorded this year have already been recorded than Britain's?

All the best

Yes...the latitudinal diversity gradient, which operates with most taxonomic groups, not just birds.

Its a bit less clear what drives it, but one theory is it is essentially to do with greater ability to specialise in a less seasonally varied environment. There's also less reason to migrate, and any sort of isolation of habitat can lead to speciation over relatively small geographic areas (e.g. antpittas in eastern / central / western Andes ranges). As far as birds are concerned, those species which do migrate into the tropics then add further to the country's list.
Mexico will have a lot of wintering species from North America, but rather fewer summer visitors from further south, so it'll be easier to build up a big list early in the year.
 

peter.jones

Well-known member
Supporter
I don't really understand the self-finding thing - you can argue that as soon as you check in a book on Golden Eagle distribution in Britain you aren't self-finding, but with the best up-to-date gen available about a specific site it can still be a bitch to actually see one. So if I were you I'd bin it. You'll see more birds and that must be more fun. :t:

Good birding!

John

We all end up doing both finding and twitching if the truth's known. Often simultaneously.

And many of the "finds" are down to a large helping of luck, let's not kid ourselves here either!
 

KenM

Well-known member
We all end up doing both finding and twitching if the truth's known. Often simultaneously.

And many of the "finds" are down to a large helping of luck, let's not kid ourselves here either!

Agreed but “the luck” will be increased by the effort employed...ie single birder...”birds” four hours a week, a colleague is doing twenty hours a week odds should be more favourable with the latter?

Cheers
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
Agreed but “the luck” will be increased by the effort employed...ie single birder...”birds” four hours a week, a colleague is doing twenty hours a week odds should be more favourable with the latter?

Cheers

You'd think, but....

Many years ago I was on my usual October fortnight on Scilly and the place felt like it ought to have some new birds in (you all know the feeling).

So Guy Langan and I set off from Porthloo up the hill and over to the corner of Telegraph, where we spent about half an hour grilling a hedge that had a load of Chiffchaffs in it. By the end of that time we knew each bird in the hedge, of whatever species, as an individual.

So we went for a wander. Fifteen minutes later Barry Wright found a Radde's Warbler in our hedge - Grrrrrr!

John
 

KenM

Well-known member
You'd think, but....

Many years ago I was on my usual October fortnight on Scilly and the place felt like it ought to have some new birds in (you all know the feeling).

So Guy Langan and I set off from Porthloo up the hill and over to the corner of Telegraph, where we spent about half an hour grilling a hedge that had a load of Chiffchaffs in it. By the end of that time we knew each bird in the hedge, of whatever species, as an individual.

So we went for a wander. Fifteen minutes later Barry Wright found a Radde's Warbler in our hedge - Grrrrrr!

John

Chiffchaffs in my experience especially during October can be great carriers. I've had them carrying Firecrest and Yellow-browed Warbler several times over the years and that's been locally (in London). But yes you're quite right the ''Devil is in the luck''...although it does help if you're obsessional...it can give you the ''hedge'' ;)
 

peter.jones

Well-known member
Supporter
Chiffchaffs in my experience especially during October can be great carriers. I've had them carrying Firecrest and Yellow-browed Warbler several times over the years and that's been locally (in London). But yes you're quite right the ''Devil is in the luck''...although it does help if you're obsessional...it can give you the ''hedge'' ;)

There is the saying "the more I practice, the luckier I get"!
But that's only half the story, you still need the bird to decide to give itself up when you walk past, or in John's case grill a hedge for 30 mins, and not have it pop out after 31 minutes.
 
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