The Safari heard from Monika this morning asking what our final tally of birds was for last year. She'd not done quite as well as hoped but then again spent lots of time out on the water in her new boat getting absolutely awesome sightings and photos of her beloved Orcas - we'd trade several bird species from our list for a glimpse of an Orca off Patch 2 any day of the week!
So the competition sets off again with us slightly in the lead but that can all change at the drop of a hat with a trip here or a trip there depending on which one of us is tripping.
If anyone else would like to join in and has an expectation of getting about 200 species for the year mostly found in your local county but with a few trips further afield and a twitch or two. Get in touch with either or both of us if you fancy a bash at in. If in the British Isles make sure your regular Patch is registered on Patchwork Challenge and you upload your records to Birdtrack.
In other news our Extreme Photographer has had interweb problems and was hoping to have been able to send these pics of his New Year's Day newts in his garden - no, you're right newts should really be hibernating by the end of the year.
We had our first school group pond dipping today. Crikey it was cold and the little ones really felt it but they got the job done. Indeed they recorded the temperature of the water at 3.3C and the air 5.2C we wrongly assumed the water would have been warmer than the air - Rule 1 Never assume anything unless told to in a maths or physics exam!
Their nets brought up some surprises too, they couldn't avoid the 3-spined Sticklebacks but they also pulled out Front and Back Swimming Water Boatmen and a Pea Shell, not seen one of those come out for a long time! Our fingers, being wet, were too cold to get the phonecam out...brrrrrrr.
Where to next? Hopefully we'll be able to brave the weather on Patch 2 tomorrow.
In the meantime who's stayed up past their bedtime in your outback.