Rare Birds Day by Day

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A&C Black, Oct 30, 2010 - Nature - 392 pages
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Rare Birds Day by Day follows three earlier Poyser titles looking at scarce and rare birds recorded in Britain and Ireland, Scarce Migrant Birds in Britain and Ireland (Sharrock, 1974), Rare Birds in Britain and Ireland (Sharrock & Sharrock, 1976) and Rare Birds in Britain and Ireland (Dymond, Fraser & Gantlett, 1989). Like these previous books, this latest rare bird title has been brought to you by well-known and experienced British birders and rare bird finders.
This book, however, differs markedly from the earlier volumes, in that it moves away from the traditional presentation of species in systematic order. Covering 282 rare species and sub-species (plus records for a further 18 Category D species) found in Britain and Ireland, around 20,000 individual records of rare birds are listed in diary style, with each individual bird appearing on the date on which it was originally found, along with all the other rare birds found on that date between 1958 and 1994. Each record is listed in county order and is accompanied by the finding site, number of birds (for multiple records) and length of stay (for those birds remaining for more than one day).
This new and novel way of presenting rare bird data will prove fascinating to anyone with an interest in finding and watching rare migrant and vagrant species. It will also prove a valuable and fun tool for the keenest rarity hunters, enabling them to use the book as a rare bird predictor, by following closely the birds found on each date over the 36 years covered by the book.
The book is enlivened with illustrations by Dave Nurney, most of them specifically prepared for this volume.
  

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Contents

Introduction
7
County index
14
County map
15
Acknowledgements
17
JANUARY
19
FEBRUARY
35
MARCH
47
APRIL
61
JULY
163
AUGUST
189
SEPTEMBER
225
OCTOBER
279
NOVEMBER
335
DECEMBER
361
Monthly species totals
377
Species list
386

MAY
83
JUNE
131
References and bibliography
392
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Steve DudIey, a displaced Lancastrian now living in Breckland Norfolk, works for a leading German binocular and telescope manufacturer. He turned his birding hobby into a career, first as an RSPB warden and then as bird clubs and regional network co-ordinator for the British Trust for Ornithology. His interest in all aspects of birds and birdwatching, particularly equipment, rare birds and twitching, has enabled him to contribute to the development of new bird- watching products, books and magazines.
Tim Benton is a mechanical designer who has lived all his life within sight of Ely Cathedral in the Fens. He started birdwatching in the 1960s, assisting the RSPB Gold Medallist, E. J. Cottier, with his protection of Black-tailed Godwits on the Ouse Washes. He has developed an interest in all aspects of birdwatching including a particular obsession with optical equipment and outdoor clothing. He began active twitching in the mid-1980s during frequent visits to the north Norfolk coast and with encouragement from enthusiastic Norfolk birdwatchers. This is his first book.
Pete Fraser is a freelance ornithologist. He runs birdwatching tours of Britain for foreign visitors, conducts surveys and is the producer of the bird-recording software package COBRA. Since postgraduate study in environmental toxicology at London University in 1984, he has established the database of scarce migrant and rare birds in Britain and Ireland used in the production of this book. He is the statistician for the British Birds Rarities Committee and co-author of Rare Birds in Britain and Ireland (T. & A. D. Poyser, 1989).
John Ryan is a General Practitioner living in west Cornwall. He is a member of the Sea- birds Advisory Panel, assistant statistician for the British Birds Rarities Committee, commit- tee member of the Cornwall Birdwatching and Preservation Society and co-editor of Newsacre, the newsletter of Association of County Record- ers and Editors.
Dave Nurney has drawn birds from an early age. After art college, he pursued bird illustration part-time whilst working as a graphic designer, with his work first appearing in Bird Watching magazine, then in Birds of the Western Palearctic (OUP) and most recently, Woodpeckers, Piculets and Wrynecks of the World (Pica Press, 1995). He has also contributed plates to the Birds of Armenia project and current projects include a pocket guide to British birds, guides to nightjars of the world and to birds of China and the Eastern Palearctic.

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