Saturday, 10 November 2012


I've been sorting out my Prestwick Carr list with a view to expanding it to flora and fauna not that this is something exceptional as I'm following in the footsteps of a Dinnington school teacher called David Maddison who published such lists in a history of Prestwick Carr he wrote in 1830. I had a moment in town the other day so popped into the library and had a look at the original.
The birds section covers some 79 species of which there are some surprising inclusions and omissions plus a couple of puzzlers caused by the classification he is using which I suspect is Wilsons and known to be a bit dodgy. For example he lists Tringa pusilla, Little Sandpiper but I suspect he is meaning Little Stint although Common Sandpiper would seem to be an omission. Then there is the inclusion of Puffin, a bird known to stay local to it's breeding grounds and unlikely inland (although Little Auk after a wreck may be possible). I'll let him off with Gannet as I myself saw one over the Carr just last year but no gulls?
I do not intend this as a criticism of this splendid work. He adds 5 species to my list which currently stands at 192 compiled from 155 self sightings and records from Northumbrian Birds which summarises both the studies of Bolam and Hancock along with the records of the Northumbrian and Tyneside Bird Club. Next time I'm in town I'll check the lists of Bolam and Hancock for a comparison.

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