Sunday, 18 October 2009

You couldn't make it up

I was told this Scilly story today by Andy Brett. I can't remember which island he said it was on, but I think it was St Agnes.

There was a crowd of about 50 or 60 people (I won't dignify them by calling them birders or even birdwatchers) watching a bird which none of them could identify. On asking a few people what was going on, Andy was told that some of them thought it was an Arctic Warbler, some thought it was a Bobolink and some thought it was a Philadelphia Vireo! Remember, all these opinions referred to the same bird. Apart from those who were there or who have already heard the story, I bet no-one can guess what the bird actually was.

I will reveal all in a day or two...

24 comments:

Anna said...

Carrier bag? ;)

James said...

dunnock?

Alan Tilmouth said...

Common Chiffchaff,although Bobolink is a bit left field.

Alan Tilmouth said...

If it wasn't Chiffchaff was it Black-throated Thrush?

beast said...

I'll go for a gannet....with an outside chance of redwing...[all supposing that they were actually looking at a bird]....

thedrunkbirder said...

Ooh, ooh, me, me. I know the answer, me, me me! I too spoke to Andy and Roger and was relayed the same story.

Best report of the week though from St Agnes was a 'grounded' adult Gannet on Wingletang... Leigh and speculated as to whether it's chakra's had been realigned.

Earl Gray or Dave for short! said...

Bet it was a house sparrow!

Mark said...

Mippit

Skev said...

'Dog shit in a bag' tree decoration?

Or a Wren in the same bush as a Reed Bunting.

The Leicester Llama said...

No-one's even close yet (apart from John who knows the answer and is therefore barred from the competition). It was a real bird, and it was only one bird.

The Leicester Llama said...

I suppose I should clarify that last comment in case other people have a different definition of 'close' - one person has guessed the family, although not the right genus.

Mark said...

I think that Tilmouth bloke is having a dig at us Andy! He'll have more than dust on his bins if he's not careful ;-)

Phil Woollen. said...

How about an out of habitat Reed Warbler! They seem to cause all kinds of mayhem - especially in city centres!

beast said...

This is tuff Andy as folks stupidity seems to have no bounds these days...

Are you sure that everyone assembled was looking at the same bird?...[i'm guessing 'no']!

Wheatear...?...chicken...?

The Leicester Llama said...

YES - everyone was looking at the same bird!! It's a common bird that any half decent birder should have no trouble identifying, even on brief views. One last clue - the nearest of the 'idiot' suggestions that looks anything at all like it plumage-wise is Bobolink, although it certainly wouldn't have been behaving like one. The Arctic Warbler and vireo suggestions, although 100% genuine, seem like someone just coming up with random bird names when you know what it actually was!

Skev said...

Tell me it's not Sedge Warbler!

The Leicester Llama said...

Skev wins the prize! Except that there isn't actually a prize. Sorry.

bluebirder... said...

Philadelphia Vireo! Is this what the Scillies have come to? Would PMSL if it wasn't so sad!

Phil Woollen. said...

I almost wish I'd been there with a video camera. Suprised Aquatic wasn't mentioned.

thedrunkbirder said...

Don't be daft Phil, Aquatic is far too obvious. Think outside the box, think outside the box.

By the way the word verification was very birdy today. Squab. A lifetimes membership to the 4/500ths Club if you know what a Squab is without googling it.

beast said...

Similar debate..[mass]...goin on at moment on turdus forum...with all the usual 'inputs' from the various factions...
Some folk reckon that there's too many older codgers fuckin up things..which i don't really agree with....you can be a friggin birding 'cock' at any age.
Yunno..i still don't get it...why do folk 'really' bother to see rare stuff when they seem to have no appreciation of the 'rarity' itself?...let alone how to ID the fuckers correctly. I know everyone's gotta start somewhere...but why not fuckin start with trying to be reasonably competent at common bird ID...? Still..as long as they is happy..[nice place to pretend you are a birder and have a jolly holiday i suppose]...

ps...soz i didn't get a chance for a 'natter' at the 'bittern dip' John...

pps...'bittern dip' leaves a bad taste in the mouth...

The Leicester Llama said...

The only way to put a stop to it (the outrageous stringing that is - I couldn't care less if retired blokes want to suddenly take up birdspotting and go to Scilly in October) is to embarrass them. That's the only reason more experienced birders are (usually) more careful - because they know they'll have the piss taken out of them if they cock up too often.

And a squab is of course a baby pigeon. And no, I didn't Google it. Do you know what a Guga is though?

beast said...

I did not know that a squab was a baby pigeon...and i do not know what a guga is...
There are many things that i don't know..[obviously]...but i do know, however, that there are many things i don't wish to know....if you know what i mean...
Having said all that shit...i am now interested in what a guga is Andy..

ps...is it a baby paradoxus black redstart that seems to defy logic..?

pps...i take no responsibility whatsoever for this 'post' as i've just been necking real ale with the lads...[and it were a nice session where Zod went 'off on one' and told the very nice barmaid that Cheryl Cole was a talentless twat...or words to that effect]...fuckin chuckle...!

The Leicester Llama said...

A Guga is a Gannet chick. Boiled and salted, this was the staple diet of the St Kildans and other Scottish islanders. Sounds utterly revolting.