SCORES UP TO THE END OF MAY 2000
1) Pete Marsh 754 176
2) Pete Fletcher 749 176
3) Mark Prestwood 709 174
4) Howard Elliot 704 170
5) Ray Hobbs 670 166
6} Tom Wilmer 668 162
7) Jean Roberts 655 163
8) Tom Walkington 634 160
9) Pete Crooks 617 152
10) Mike Robinson 568 147
11) Bill Cross 551 145
12) John Mason 551 143
13) Jon Carter 489 131
14) Andrew McCafferty 441 124
It is very close at the top of the table, with both Pete Marsh and Pete Fletcher being on 176 species.
Mark Prestwood, although only two species behind, has some catching up to do due to their greater number of finds.
Also Pete Marsh at the end of the month hadn't yet seen Gannet, Pied Flycatcher, Ruff or any of the Skuas. Ray Hobbs scores arrived on a postcard from Norfolk, where he had just had a totally washed out day. Along with most of the reality birders, including Jean Roberts and myself, his best bird of the month was the calling Wryneck at Natland, along with American Wigeon at Leighton Moss.
Pete Crooks efforts were rewarded with eight Dotterel on Wards Stone, also picking up one of the more elusive local species in Black Redstart at Heysham. His one regret was not having his binoculars with him when a Buzzard Sp. flew above him as he walked along Coulston Road.Tom Wilmer had good finds in Ring Ouzel and Corn Bunting, both at Cockersands and five Dotterel on Wards Stone. The summer plumaged Red Throated Diver showing well on the Lune, was a bonus for many including Andrew McCafferty, myself, and Jon Carter. Jon also had good results from his favourite patch, finding two Yellow Wagtails at the Aldcliffe flooded field, and Little-ringed Plover at the same site. Again on the flood, he saw excellent numbers of White Wagtails, with a maximum count of 11, this spring. His finds have also included Water Pipit, Barnacle Goose, and Green Sandpiper.
Tom Walkington, still managed to pick up good birds including Manx Shearwaters, Common Cranes, and Sandwich Terns etc. At the same time managing to concentrate on his other main hobby, rock climbing.
Howard Elliot, as well as having a good score in the league also saw, as others in the league, quality birds outside the area, Fan-tailed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Tawny Pipit, Black-faced Bunting and Blackpoll Warbler etc.
Could those in the league who see birds that are not common, such as Wood Sandpiper, please ensure that the information gets out as quickly and as widely as possible. The Leighton Moss bird could be the only record this year and was missed by many.
I've finally got a basic web site up and running and will keep the scores up to date on a regular monthly basis. The address is www.realityleague.freeserve.co.uk and just click on the scores link. Also if people have information they would like to pass on to others, such as good sites for specific species or current local birds (not everyone has a pager!), I am looking to add pages for this as well with regular updates. (John Mason)