House Crows & Magpies; a response to Mike Carter

Subject: House Crows & Magpies; a response to Mike Carter
From: Phil Hansbro <>
Date: Tue, 06 Mar 2001 22:04:42 +1100 (EST)
Although I have missed the first part of this debate, I must admit that I
am with Mike on this one. I have been a very active birder/twitcher what
ever you want to call me in Britain for 10-15 years. Birders have been
considering these problems since the mid 60s and each and every arguement
has been put forward and considered. I have heard/read these arguements
1000s of times. There has been a vast amount of debate in the UK between
the 10s of 1000s of birders there. However, there is some sort of
consensus. This depends on your stand point. The British Ornithological
Union holds the official British list and has a committee that makes
judgements on each individual rarity record. However, many, may be even
most, birders think their decisions too strict and over cautious and have
formed their own group (the UK 400 club) who make their own decisions again
with a committee. I think, that their decisions are accepted by many more
birders and are of much more value when you consider competitive listing,
which, lets face it is the fun side of competitive birding/listing. If the
bird hangs around more than a day or 2 then decisions are often made while
the bird is still there, which helps one to decide whether to go for it or
not. It is also much more exciting than the somewhat anti climactic waiting
for 2 years for a final decision on something. So surely rather than
re-inventing the wheel we should learn from teh British experience - it's
so much less painful. The majority of rules are directly applicable to
Australia which is more straight forward than the UK - the boundaries are
less political and I'm sure there's no where near the number of individuals
or species in captivity in Australia.

The more straight forward these things are the more pleasurable it is for
everyone and the more people get into birding, conservation etc - surely
that's the whole point.


(Ps we could make it even simpler and say "full wings, no rings, I saw it
and it was one!!).

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