Birding Golf

To: <>
Subject: Birding Golf
From: <>
Date: Sun, 4 Nov 2012 16:14:26 +1100

It's like birding 500, going misere, replace the tricks with ticks! Still, if 
you achieve it with a witness (presumably, that's open misere), you get the 
hole-in-one: 500.

I have seen lone budgies on a few occasions. 



On 04/11/2012, at 11:31 AM, "Chris Watson" <> wrote:

> G'day all,
> I thought I'd put the feelers out to see if I have just invented a new and
> craptacular version of listing. Stick with me...
> The useful period, for listing purposes, of my residency in Central
> Australia has come to a close. There's really nothing more that I am
> realistically likely to find here, that can't be found elsewhere. (Having
> said that there are still a few southern NT curiosities that I'm keen to
> get on my NT list; Grey Currawong, Plains Wanderer, Thick-billed Grasswren,
> Malleefowl, White-fronted Chat, Blue Bonnet, Yellow Chat. There's probably
> only a couple there that have even a remote chance of occurring in the
> southern NT these days, but if anyone has info otherwise...) To keep my
> list from a state of suspended animation worthy of a Ridley Scott sci-fi
> romp, I've been tinkering with a few different lists. The idea of embassy
> listing (based on the technicality that diplomatic missions are remote
> plots of foreign soil) has been raised before on this forum so I won't go
> over that again. It's an interesting exercise though and... it's a list no
> less arbitrary than any state or national list.
> The other one which has a lot of appeal is the vicarious list which is
> fairly self-explanatory. This makes ticking those vagrants and
> super-rarities a much more achievable (not to mention affordable) prospect
> when you're a working birder, resident in the middle of the continent. It
> also renders gripping off, almost obsolete, as your ticks are now my ticks.
> This may lead to covert birding reminiscent of sneaky corvid caching
> behaviour, where we all bird in private, and no-one shares lists anymore.
> The possibilities are endless. The vicarious list required me to go through
> the qualifying process of determining who was a close enough acquaintance,
> for THEIR birds to be entered onto MY list. In the world of social media
> the networks of connected birding acquaintances can be staggeringly
> extensive, so I decided to leave Facebook and Twitter out of it - but that
> would be another interesting exercise for another rainy day. I'm sure a
> World Day List would rapidly surge into the thousands. Anyway, the
> arbitrary rule I decided to stick to was my phone contacts.
> Congratulations! If your number is in my phone, I am now ticking your
> birds. This may be the only way I ever get a Night Parrot on any list.
> An experience this morning led me to consider another type of listing based
> on, to use the modern parlance, "owning" the dip. It may not be a new idea,
> but I've called it *Birding Golf*. While actively looking for birds - you
> can't get about with your eyes closed or stay indoors - you have to tick as
> few species from the complete list for the area as possible. I'll have to
> nut out some rules (there might have to be time periods involved) but
> that's the guts of it. So if your local patch has an all time list of 150
> birds, and the average day or visit list there is say 45, then we can take
> that as par. No birdies is a hole-in-one - although that is surely a
> scenario hopefully only available to those of us who endure into the coming
> post-apocalyptic nuclear winter. (From here on, I'll avoid the entire
> catalogue of bird puns available as I'm sure they have immediately occurred
> to any readers, just as they have to me.)
> This all occurred to me this morning as I was returning from a
> spectacularly unsuccessful trip down south. Up at 3.30am in an effort to
> get a look at reported flocks of budgies in their hundreds, thousands, and
> even tens of thousands, I saw.... 1. ONE. Save for the art-deco interior of
> my Great Grandmother's East Bentleigh sitting room, where dwelled a caged
> blue beast by the name of *Arthur*, I have never in my life seen
> *one*budgie. There is always a baker's dozen, a few, a handful, or at
> the very
> least - a pair. I drove through the entire Owen Springs Conservation
> Reserve and sat by Redbank Waterhole for an entire hour and saw only a
> single individual of *Melopsittacus undulatus*, and I have a witness to
> this feat.
> The magnitude and perfection of this dip is, I believe, unmatchable -
> although I still technically ticked the species, it's still a dip. Setting
> out to view 60,000 and seeing 1 is my first, possibly my last, and almost
> certainly my finest, round of Birding Golf. I'm framing the scorecard.
> I'll get out of your way now. Nap time.
> Cheers,
> Chris Watson
> Alice Springs
> -- 
> *Central Australian birding resource*
> *Guiding, writing, and the latest site information*
> *from Alice Springs*
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