Making lists is a fundamental part of being a hobbyist, and the systematic recording of sightings is something that almost all birders do. Whether they pencil it into pocket journals or upload their data digitally, listing is a crucial part of the experience.
Most people will list their sightings by each session or trip. Those accumulate and can be compiled into larger lists. The three most common of the larger lists are: Life List A list of every species of bird seen since beginning the hobby.
Year List A list of every species of bird seen between January 1st and December 31st of each year.
Garden List A list of every species of bird seen within the confines of a garden.
But there’s a few alternative, creative options for those who can’t get their listing fix from the above. Here’s some unconventional ways to catalogue!
County List A list of every species of bird within the confines of your county.
Wish List A list of every species of bird that you’d like to see.
Low Carbon List A list of every species of bird seen with travelling restricted to walking or cycling only.
TV List A list of every species of bird seen on television.
Online List A list of every species of bird seen on nature live streams, or when navigating Google Maps.
Am I missing any? List me out your alternative lists in the comments below!
Our herring gulls are red listed birds. Think about that the next time you hear some flaming idiot calling for a cull of them.
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I too am not a list lover.
As a former hill and mountain walker (now disabled thanks to a careless motorist), I've seen folk become to fixated on lists and bagging to the point it takes the pleasure away from a hobby.
While some days I will go out with a species in mind, I'm never disappointed in what I see, even if I never see the species in mind, for nature has its own agenda and what you actually see will tell its own story about the conditions at the time, weather, predators and many other contributory factors, which for me, provides a great learning curve.
Flickr Peak Rambler
In reply to Mike B:
Michael B said:disabled thanks to a careless motorist
I'm so sorry to hear that.
Michael B said:I'm never disappointed in what I see, even if I never see the species in mind
That's a brilliant attitude. Someone like you will never come back from a birding trip moaning that they've 'seen nothing'. People who only want rarities are missing out on a lot.
In reply to Clare:
Thank you Clare.
One thing I've found, and learned with the help of therapists, family and friends who have stood by me, if you let an incident take you down, it will, and yes, I have been close to the ultimate act, but the right support came along, and work happily took me back, which on its own, was a fabulous boost, they made feel I was able to contribute and self esteem was returned.
I still mist the hills and moors, but I've always had a passion for nature ands was able to make the sideways move with the right support.
Many of my reports have said something along the line of: "it was quiet, but that made me look elsewhere for other things". There is always something going on, you just may have to look a little harder.
I learned from working on farms as a teenager a long time ago, nature has its own agenda and you can't fully make nature do what you want it to do. Science manipulates.
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