A Wintery Wharf

Portbury was dripping with birds this morning, largely flocks of redwings and fieldfares. The ponds were iced up so the only ducks I saw were flying but I still netted teal, wigeon and gadwall. A lone stonechat patrolled the scrub nearest to the houses.

Lapwings ventured on to the fields and snipe flew regularly. It’s a red-letter month when I see one of those; today the total was three. Skylarks and reed buntings were equally obvious; it was like the whole bird world was on show.

I even had a mystery individual. It flew over my head on the salt marsh. I had it down for a plover with its small pigeon build and shape but it didn’t fit grey plover: brown upperparts, no black axillaries and no wing bar. Golden? Unlikely all on its own and it dropped onto the tidal mud so even less likely. It’s not often a bird flummoxes me and this will have to go down as unidentified.

I picked the best of the day. As I returned, the sun, which had kept it tolerably warm, retired behind thin clouds. Now it’s raining and I’ve just exited a $20 freezeout. The damn flop pairing up again and hitting my opponent’s hand. How many times can that happen? Not too many more: I’m losing enthusiasm.

I’ll go back to playing with the iPod. Actually I’ve found World Series of Poker Hold’em Legend but that’s only for practice and it’s not real. No, I need an app to edit Excel files. That’s how I keep records in the field: download site lists from Wildlife Recorder and add a column to turn them into checklists. I’m favouring Documents To Go Premium at the moment. It interfaces with Dropbox and comes from the nice people at DataViz, who had a similar app on the old Palm T¦X.

Sorry if that’s all a bit nerdy for you.

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