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Thread: Slender-billed Curlew, Druridge Bay now not accepted

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    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    Default Slender-billed Curlew, Druridge Bay now not accepted

    The latest BBRC WIP file indicates that the Slender-billed Curlew at Druridge Bay in 1998 is now no longer deemed acceptable - http://www.bbrc.org.uk/main-informat...rk-in-progress. A really tough decision considering all of the discussion about the bird, but it also needs to be ratified by the BOURC.

    No doubt there will be even more....

    Brian S

    add link to photos on surfbirds: http://www.surfbirds.com/mb/Features...ed-curlew.html
    Last edited by Brian S; April 13th, 2012 at 09:16 PM.

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    Senior Member Johnny X's Avatar
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    Tremendously sad in many ways.

    I could never get my head round the published evidence...in some pictures it looks very convincing, in others not at all.

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    See Forktail's note on the other thread, apparently the 'not proven' is an error:

    Quote Originally Posted by forktail View Post
    The record is still in circulation. The NP was an error. An article in is preparation concerning the assessment process surrounding the record. Read into that whatever you like! I'm fairly sure people will draw one conclusion by deduction

    Edit: perhaps an expeditious 'official' statement on the genuine current status of the record (even if it is NP) would be useful before things get a little excitable?

    F.

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    Like many, I was surprised when this bird was accepted, it would have been much easier to 'sideline' the sighting.

    It seems to have been the case over the ensuing years that there has been a considerable amount of 'sour grapes' over this sighting and the most noise regarding it's identity has been made by those who didn't see it.

    For the record, I did see it, wasn't sure what the heck it was, just knew it didn't look like I expected it to but I'm not a competetive lister so acceptance or not is secondary, seems we have probably lost another species from the planet.

    Andy
    Last edited by andyadcock; April 14th, 2012 at 10:19 AM.

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    Note the quoted retraction below from Nigel Hudson.

    "Slender-billed Curlew:
    I have to apologise before things go ridiculous. I did things in a bit of a hurry last night and that is a genuine error. It is still In Circulation. We do intend to write a full article on the very long assessment process, and I totally agree that any annoucemnts for such high-profile records should not be given simply by a spreadsheet on a web-site. As I have said before the WIP file is not the 'document of record' - that is the annual report in British Birds.
    I wonder now if I should continue with this WIP file as I have people asking for updates regularly, and yet to check 900+ records is too time consuming if I am to try to give an update say monthly.
    Sorry once again. I will put up a new version straight away. Nigel Hudson"

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    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    Retraction noted - I was surprised - I may get the thread deleted...

    Brian S

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian S View Post
    I may get the thread deleted...
    I'd say leave it as lots of people will have seen reports of the 'NP' (e.g. like here) and may not have heard about the retraction. Maybe edit the lead post to add a note about the retraction there, to make it more conspicuous?

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    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
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    You're probably right Michael.

    Unlike comments on BF, I don't want any reading into my OP that I have insider information on this record, I simply followed what had been put on the WIP file; I am merely the museum consultant and have no insight into the decisions of the BBRC. If it does get NPed then it will have to go to the BOURC as it is on the British list and will have to be removed OR sent back to BBRC...

    Brian S

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    Senior Member darrenjhughes's Avatar
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    I wasted my money spent 5 mins looking at and drove back to Wales !!!!!

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    Although Nigel published in haste, I believe the outcome will be the same and sensibly BBRC and BOURC will render the record as ''not proven''. Of course I did not see the bird in question (but did see its close relative next day when the shout went out and believe I did see this bird in future years at Breydon Water and elsewhere) and there will always be those that shout ''sour grapes'' but in my personal view, Slender-billed Curlew became extinct when I saw the last surviving individual at Merja Zerga (Morocco) in February 1995. How both Commiittees could accept such an incredulous UK record (of a first-summer) after such a short review period really amazed me, particularly when you consider how long it has taken to make decisions on the likes of Elegant Tern and the like. This was the most important record that both authorities were ever going to oversee and adjudicate upon and the implications of such an acceptance were huge.

    All of the published evidence supports the identification as Eurasian Curlew and there is very little to indicate a Slender-billed Curlew in a hitherto undescribed first-summer-type plumage. Although for political reasons I largely followed the status quo at the time and also 'accepted' the record, discussions that followed with various members of the Dutch Rarities Committee following the decision worried me immensely and it soon became apparent that views and opinions of those with the most experience of the species were being ignored.

    As we currently stand, the Northumberland first-summer Slender-billed Curlew is the last individual ever recorded on the planet !!

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