Bob Harris e-mailed today with the latest wee issue thrown up by the tetrads for Lancs and North Merseyside, I'll leave it to Bob to explain, while I squint at Steve White's red 'n' greeny dot pdf map (Did I ever tell anyone I have red and green colour blindness when the hues are bunched together as dots? Makes reading atlas maps a right pain in the ass I can tell you, but 86% of the male population have the same condition apparently).
Sounds like a job for the Nocturnal Bird Club if you ask me, even with BST just a few owl hoots away...
Steve White has produced the attached pdf (Tawny.pdf) of the distribution of Tawny Owl during the current Atlas periods.
The red dots show distribution (winter and breeding combined) so far in the current surveys (TTVs plus RRs) and the khaki ones show 1997-2000 atlas breeding tetrads for which we haven't yet got any current records.
As you can see there is a major discrepancy.
Although it's possible that Tawny Owls have decreased in the past 10 years it seems extremely unlikely that it's been so dramatic.
It is much more likely that our nocturnal coverage this time around is far less comprehensive.
It's therefore also likely that coverage for other nocturnal species is equally weak.
We would love to improve our coverage of these species.
I freely accept that I am the world's worst tetrader, being blessed with the attention span of a forgetful goldfish, but if anyone can help, you know what to do, and if you don't, go to the Lancs and Cheshire Fauna Society website here.
Not much along the coast today - a steady passage of Meadow Pipits and Pied Wags and a fine male Peregrine on the dunes at the south end of Ainsdale beach, before it launched off low and out over the waves towards the oil rig, scaring the bejaysus out of everything in sight.
Eyes to the skies everyone, eyes to the skies...