Notice Board: the Honey-buzzard Season in Northumberland 2022 as it happened – Nick Rossiter

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This is the current blog for the 2022 season, updated daily, giving recent activity.

The main aim in the new season is to write a book on Honey-buzzard, using my experience in British Isles, continental Europe and Africa, dating from 1993. Field work in 2021 in Northumberland will complement this task, filling in gaps and reinforcing findings. Further lengthy trips in mind abroad are Israel/Tarifa/Gibraltar in September and Kenya Highlands and coast in a future January. Broad headings for book are: Motivation, Historical Records, Rediscovery in Britain, Migration Patterns, Arrival and Display, Breeding Activity, Habitat, Dispersal, Wintering Grounds, Four Identification Models, Value of Field Experience, Further Studies, Bibliography. The initial costs of publishing the book in hard copy, running to perhaps 250pp, are well within my means. Some supplementary material may be published online.

22nd February 2022: This Notice board is now closed. The new Notice Board for 2023 is available at 2023.

Highlights of Year from Honey-buzzard home page at http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/index.html:

News 2022

17/04/22 Honey-buzzard: 2 W at Kolimvarion, Crete. Better weather for seeing migrants, including Honey-buzzard with a female and male coming off the sea from E at 12:33 and 12:43 respectively and flying towards southern base of the Rodopou Peninsula, presumably to feed in the more fertile land there, before continuing to N. Here’s piccies of the male Honey-buzzard at Crete on 17/4 at 12:44: 1  2  3  4 (12001). The female Honey-buzzard (or another) was indeed rediscovered later at 15:32 in Koumouli at the base of the Rodopou Peninsula floating over the wooded hillside 1 (12001b) but no sign of the male. Also a male Honey-buzzard N at 15:56 at Agia Triada on 9/4.

18/05/22 Honey-buzzard Habitat: Completed analysing habitat for Honey-buzzard at Hyons Wood, that’s no.4 in Tyne Valley E and no.22 overall with further river-system totals: Hexhamshire 6, Allen 10, Tyne Valley W 2.

10/05/22 Black Kite/Honey-buzzard: Here's Black Kite piccies from Prudhoe 10/5 in display for pure pair: second adult 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  and first adult 9  10  11  12  13  14  15 (pair)  16  17  18  19  20  plus pair with male Honey-buzzard (12004) 21 .

29/05/22 Black Kite update: 1st seen 5/5 at Bywell. Have Black Kite at 5 sites with 1) a pure pair displaying at last year’s site at Prudhoe, where mixed pairing with Red Kite last year; 2) last year’s site at Bywell with one bird seen to date; 3) a new site near Styford where a pure pair appear to be nesting along Tyne; 4) a new site in Hexham area where single bird seen; and 5) the site in East Allendale where a mixed pairing again of Black Kite (male) x Red Kite (female) with food pass seen. So that’s a minimum of 7 Black Kite at 5 sites!

30/05/22 Honey-buzzard update: first seen 24.4 with pair at Ordley. Slow return this year and activity subdued with cool daytime weather; 10 sites occupied in study area with 7 male, 7 female seen.

28/05/22 Honey-buzzard: Here’s Honey-buzzard piccies from Staward, where saw 3 Honey-buzzard: 2 displaying at N, female 1  2  3  4  5, male 6  7 (12009), 1 male in territory at S.

15/06/22 Black Kite update: 1st seen 5/5 at Bywell. Have Black Kite at 5 sites with 1) a pure pair displaying at last year’s site at Prudhoe, where mixed pairing with Red Kite last year; 2) last year’s site at Bywell with a pure pair up on 10/06 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11, and singles seen on 2 occasions; 3) a new site near Styford where a pure pair appear to be nesting along Tyne with, for instance, one seen on 29/5 1  2  3  4; 4) a new site in Hexham area where a pure pair defending site by Tyne on 01/06 1  2  3  4  5; and 5) the site in East Allendale where a mixed pairing again of Black Kite (male) x Red Kite (female) with food pass seen. So that’s a minimum of 9 Black Kite at 5 sites!

15/06/22 Honey-buzzard update: typical high aerial hanging by males in recent days so pairs settled. Not a good year for vigorous display. In core area 6/6 sites occupied in ‘Shire and 7/8 in Tyne Valley W. 20 sites occupied in whole study area with 15 male, 10 female seen. Piccies: Ordley 24/4 female 12002 1 ; Ordley 24/4 male 12002 2 ; Bywell 5/5 pair 12003 3 ; Prudhoe 11/5 male with Black Kite 12004 4 ; Sinderhope 17/5 female 12007 5 ; Bywell 5/5 male 12008 6 ; Bywell 5/5 male 12008 7 ; Bywell 5/5 male 12008 8 ; Hexham NE1/6 female12010 9 ; Dotland 4/6 female 12013 10.

15/06/22: Other medium-sized raptors update for 2022 ytd: Red Kite 24 birds, 18 localities, observer’s own records only; Goshawk 8 birds, 7 localities; Common Buzzard 81 birds, 38 localities. These totals are lower than they might be with long absence in Crete of 2+ weeks in April. Nil returns: Hen Harrier, Marsh Harrier, Montagu’s Harrier, Golden Eagle, White-tailed Eagle.

01/07/22: Black Kite update: further recent sightings at the 5 sites: 1) 2 birds at Prudhoe on 25/6, one heavy 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9, a lighter-weight bird 10  11  12  13 so 2 birds seen, both apparently pure Black Kite but the lighter-weight bird could have a bit of Red Kite in it; 2) 1 bird seen briefly at Bywell on 1/7; 3) at Styford 1 bird hunting out to E by Tyne on 1/7; 4) at Hexham on 29/6, a Black Kite was up over the site with everything up in area including Corvids; the Kite circled over the site 1  2 and came into land and everything quickly quietened down; another Black Kite came out of the nest site and flew provocatively flap-flap-glide into the Common Buzzard site to the W 3  4  5  6  7  8  9, circling some trees there and rousing an angry Common Buzzard which flew in circles around each other and even a female Honey-buzzard came up briefly at one point 3 (12100); this kite was lost to sight in this area to W of its nest; and 5) the site in East Allendale where a mixed pairing again, on 27/6 a Black Kite came back to the nest, coming in fast in the breeze from the E and going straight in, giving opportunity for 2 photos 1  2. So the 5 sites all continue to progress!

01/08/22: Honey-buzzard update: 22 sites occupied, 17 male, 12 female. Very little activity noted in rearing period this year with only 6 birds (4 male, 2 female) seen at 4 sites since 15/6. But my absences abroad (Hungary, France) and distraction of Black Kite need to be taken into account!

15/09/22: Honey-buzzard end of breeding season update: Overall 23 sites occupied, 18 male, 14 female. In fledging period from 28/8-15/9, in 14 sites, had 4 male, 4 female, 21+ juvenile seen, 1+ juvenile inferred, 30 birds total. Survey very much restricted to core of study area this year of Hexhamshire (Devil’s Water) and Tyne Valley W. In this core area the population was at saturation levels with high breeding success. Piccies: male Dotland 29/8 12111 1 ; male Bywell 30/8 12113 2  juvenile Bywell 30/8 12113 3 ; juvenile Shilford 30/8 12114 4 ; juvenile West Dipton 4/9 12116 5 ; juvenile Viewley 5/9 12117 6 ; juvenile Eltringham 9/9 12118 7 ; female 2 juv Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 8 ; female Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 9 ; female Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 10 ; female Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 11.

14/11/22: Black Kite season summary: 7 sites occupied, 12 adults seen, all pure pairs, all sites successful, 11+ young raised (4x2, 3x1+). See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandbk.html for further details.

17/11/22: Hobby season summary: 3 sites occupied, 4 adults seen, no confirmed breeding. There is a marked decline:10+ sites occupied annually from 2001-2017 and 3-9 sites from 2018-2022, albeit with less coverage in latter period. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandhobby.html for further details.

22/11/22: Goshawk season summary: 9 sites occupied in spring, no records after 15/6, no young known to be raised, a perplexing season. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandgos.html for further details.

18/12/22: Red Kite season summary: 40 sites occupied but only 16 juveniles known to fledge, a disappointing season productivity-wise. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandrk.html for further details.

15/01/23: Honey-buzzard season summary: 23 sites occupied, 33 adults seen (19 male, 14 female), 23 juvenile fledged, core area maintained with usual high productivity. Nine migrants were seen, including 4 female E/S in peak period identified by BirdGuides from 9/9-14/9. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandhb.htm for further details.

17/01/23: Honey-buzzard Habitat: Completed analysing habitat for Honey-buzzard at Stanley Burn, that’s no.8 and last one in Tyne Valley E and no.27 overall with further river-system totals: Hexhamshire 6 (complete), Allen 10 (complete), Tyne Valley W (3 in progress).

12/02/23: Honey-buzzard in France: in trips this year, lasting 3 weeks in all, to Marciac in July and Chamonix in August found 3 and 2 sites occupied respectively. See Marciac 2022 and Chamonix 2022 for details.



22nd February 2022: This Notice board is now closed. The new Notice Board for 2023 is available at 2023.

February 21st: maximum 10C, minimum 5C, light SW, cloudy, dry daytime. Sorted more piccies for Honey-buzzard in study area in April-June and added highlights to News as above and here:

15/06/22 Honey-buzzard update: typical high aerial hanging by males in recent days so pairs settled. Not a good year for vigorous display. In core area 6/6 sites occupied in ‘Shire and 7/8 in Tyne Valley W. 20 sites occupied in whole study area with 15 male, 10 female seen. Piccies: Ordley 24/4 female 12002 1 ; Ordley 24/4 male 12002 2 ; Bywell 5/5 pair 12003 3 ; Prudhoe 11/5 male with Black Kite 12004 4 ; Sinderhope 17/5 female 12007 5 ; Bywell 5/5 male 12008 6 ; Bywell 5/5 male 12008 7 ; Bywell 5/5 male 12008 8 ; Hexham NE1/6 female12010 9 ; Dotland 4/6 female 12013 10.

Completed NB 2022 today so will switch over tomorrow to NB 2023. As part of my health review, had check-up at private dentistry in Corbridge today; quite an exhaustive check-over with verdict all clear except for a burn on my palette which she wants to check over again in 2 weeks time; this was caused by hot cheese in a snack I had on the train last Friday; no more burning hot food! Have an appointment with hygienist on Thursday as part of the Plan. She did fortuitously give me some advice on accessing HoLEP more quickly – marvellous! And said teeth and gums were in better condition than last time as I was obviously brushing them better (new Oral-B electric tooth-brush, just like the adverts!). So pleased I went! Have written to the gorgeous one: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 20th: maximum 10C, minimum 8C, moderate W, cloudy, dry daytime. At 14:30 15 Brambling feeding on beech mast in Sele with 20 Chaffinch (1 singing). Also a Treecreeper and 5 Redwing. Sorted more piccies for Honey-buzzard in study area in August-September and added highlights to News as above and here:

15/09/22: Honey-buzzard end of breeding season update: Overall 23 sites occupied, 18 male, 14 female. In fledging period from 28/8-15/9, in 14 sites, had 4 male, 4 female, 21+ juvenile seen, 1+ juvenile inferred, 30 birds total. Survey very much restricted to core of study area this year of Hexhamshire (Devil’s Water) and Tyne Valley W. In this core area the population was at saturation levels with high breeding success. Piccies: male Dotland 29/8 12111 1 ; male Bywell 30/8 12113 2  juvenile Bywell 30/8 12113 3 ; juvenile Shilford 30/8 12114 4 ; juvenile West Dipton 4/9 12116 5 ; juvenile Viewley 5/9 12117 6 ; juvenile Eltringham 9/9 12118 7 ; female 2 juv Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 8 ; female Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 9 ; female Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 10 ; female Eastwood Common 11/9 12119 11.

Still some material to add to 2022 before close but we’re down to June-Jan now. Today made R4m4l @ B, where good chat on civil servant cock-ups by BH and made G4g4s with R/A/P for good chat b4 P goes off to the Caribbean for a cruise. Did phone Freeman; they said should get NHS referral so will try that with my GP but think you can approach private clinic directly if that fails. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 19th: maximum 8C, minimum 7C, fresh SW, cloudy, dry daytime. Catching up! Another concert today in afternoon by Dudok Quartet of Amsterdam, playing at QH in HEX: Mozart sq 23, Tchaikovsky sq 1, Shostakovich sq 5. Very enjoyable: the Tchaikovsky was beautiful, particularly the andante, and the Shostakovich was mysterious (ambiguous they called it!). Bought a CD in the foyer afterwards of their Shostakovich 5 and 7 of his preludes. Later made G4g+wh4s with A/R/P for good catch-up. Compiled 27 piccies of Honey-buzzard from late August and early September 2022 in 8 visits and added most to web site. Did say I was doing a final trawl for neglected piccies. Will write someone soon: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! 2moro it’s R for lunch and G in evening.

February 18th: maximum 7C, minimum 1C, light W, cloudy, heavy showers in evening and overnight. Quiet day, resting after the music bonanza. Did make W4bigshop (£63) and DoW for great chat with D/D at DoW4g+wh4s. Have now been officially listed as needing HoLEP but no date given. No more TWOC so have stopped taking Tamsulosin (last 16/2) which were making me feel grotty; cannot imagine being on those for the rest of my life. Still with equipment, which requires some care and maintenance. Sleeping much better now, having got more used to situation. Raising private treatment issue on Monday. Markets not so optimistic this last week, showing loss 12k gross and loss 16k net after 4k withdrawal for elder granddaughter’s S birthday on 17/2, Also sent her a singing (helium) balloon in frozen emblem – very popular evidently!

February 17th: maximum 11C, minimum 3C, storm from W, some rain. Storm Otto, named in Denmark, is first named storm of the season; haven’t seen mentions by the climate alarmists that storms have become so scarce this autumn and winter – not surprising as focussing on extreme weather is very much part of the unscientific event attribution plot! It was also a very normal hurricane season in the Atlantic last summer against all predictions. Was directly affected by storm as problems with overhead cables delayed train back. Came to a halt at Doncaster for an hour and then went at reduced speed to NCL arriving about 90 min late; thought LNER did OK in circumstances keeping us informed and Network Rail quickly got the overhead cables working again, so no delay repay; I was anyway on a cheap £37 ticket! The Uber to Stevenage Station cost £18 including £3 tip. Thought I’d have 2 hours to while away before concert so now Metro to GHD and straight to S for partners’ reception. Rehearsal was short as Alina had already presented this concert at Sunderland yesterday (and in future at Kendal on Saturday). So we were shown the streaming system for 40 min, which was very impressive with 10 cameras and annotated score. Partners are now being given free streaming – nice gesture! Concert by RNS had the inspiring Alina Ibragimova as director/violin, playing Mozart’s Violin Concerto 3 with Alina as soloist; Jennifer Higdon’s Soliloquy; Alfred Schnittke’s Moz-Art à la Haydn; Mozart’s Posthorn Serenade. The violin concerto was good on the ears; the Soliloquy was a bit like Copeland, very smooth; Schnittke is rated as a worthy successor to Shostakovich and his piece was extraordinary, starting with the players performing in the dark, some intricate mobile positioning as the piece progressed and finally MG acting as an extravagant conductor! The Posthorn Serenade was a very varied typical Mozart piece with complex interplays between the woodwind and the strings. CA was very good on the flute and delighted she’s now being partnered, long overdue (by JC). Had supper with partners and had drink with L after concert with good chat to my partner M and his partner I. Got taxi back to station as feeling tired and sore after recent activity, and train back to HEX.

February 16th: maximum 8C, minimum 7C, light SE, dry. Up early to catch 07:54 HEX to NCL, cancelled, so caught 08:14 and then 09:30 to STV, changing at NNG, travelling 1st class, very nice! Got taxi to son's place in Welwyn (£20), left case and we went by bus to WGC, train to FPK, tube to Covent Garden and met big sis at Prima Sapori D'Italia for late lunch (tagliatelle with salmon). Then to ROH for Tannhäuser from 18:00 to 22:15. What a fantastic performance, last night for the show turned out to be fortuitously well-judged with Stefan Vinke fully fit to play the title role, a fresh conductor with great Wagnerian poise Alexander Soddy, and the other singers, orchestra and chorus all fired-up after disappointing early reviews. Elisabeth was brilliantly acted and sung by Lise Davidsen and Venus, as sung by Ewa Plonka, was suitably seductive. The plot is a familiar Wagner one with the hero Tannhäuser looking for redemption through a woman’s love (that of Elisabeth) after committing earlier sins (in the Venusberg). The version of the opera performed was the Vienna 1875 one, based on the Paris one from 1861, incorporating a shortened overture and ballet immediately after the overture. The previous 2 live performances I’ve seen at Berlin (Deutsch Oper) and Budapest (Müpa) had the concert overture and a shorter ballet (Dresden version). The end of the concert overture is very stirring but since it’s really the climax of the last Act there are good reasons for postponing the climax to its proper place. The ballet was entertaining, quite acrobatic, designed to please the Jockey Club members of Paris who liked dancing (or more accurately the dancers!). So Elisabeth dies for Tannhäuser and after his failure to secure pardon in Rome, Tannhäuser finally sees redemption in a very moving emotional rendering of the pilgrim’s chorus with large chorus and orchestra all at full power. Tannhäuser is more popular on the continent, perhaps because it’s considered a classical Teutonic genre but it was packed out tonight and let’s hope it becomes more part of the UK music scene. Too complicated to meet up with JL but empathy through the performance! So a very good night, back with son to WGC and taxi to his flat, which now has a new shower. Had a Grey Wagtail at Hexham and a Red Kite at Holme Fen (Huntingdon) on way down. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February15th: maximum 9C, minimum 5C, sunny spells, light W, almost dry. Switch off day yesterday, was up from 6-2 on 13/2 (20 hours) and felt quite jaded, even having slight temperature. Have received report from consultant, confirming HoLEP as next step (‘listed’) but no time-scale except a routine event 12 weeks ahead. Will explore private options next week. Had more blood test results from practice: liver, thyroid, kidney, urea and electrolytes, all OK and non-diabetic; but cholesterol results slightly off, bmi slightly high and, in particular, high bp leads to critical position for cardiovascular risks. Have ECG at Hexham Hospital on 27/2 and made dentist appointment at my now private practice in Corbridge for 21/2. So taking the pills: giving health top priority! Early start tomorrow for the Wagner, leaving HEX around 8. Got out today making QHC/QHL where met S/JR for good chat about philosophy and music in particular. We all decried the lack of appreciation of philosophy in the UK, compared to France, Germany and the US. In computing we try to represent reality and understanding reality is very much part of philosophy. S had even heard of Kurt Gödel, University of Vienna in the 1930s, our hero in proving mathematically that models are incomplete and indeterminable, because of their axioms (assumptions). That’s my talk at Rotary on 20/3. Commonly thought of as Jewish, Kurt was actually Lutheran but he had many Jewish friends and seeing the way things were going in 1938 (in particular Kristallnacht and his failure to secure a position at Vienna University) he fled via Trans-Siberian Railway to the US, becoming a mate of Einstein at Princeton University, where Whitehead wrote a lot of his philosophical treasures about 10 years earlier, dying there in 1947. Have almost completed my abstract for the conference at Munich in July:

Whitehead’s Category of the Ultimate as Lawvere’s Topos in Category Theory


Nick Rossiter

Computer and Information Sciences

Northumbria University, Newcastle NE1 8ST, UK

Corresponding Author's email: nick.rossiter1@btinternet.com

http: //www.nickrossiter.org.uk/process/


Category theory has its foundations in the pure mathematics of objects related by arrows. Many of the proofs in category theory are on small categories, set-like constructions. The philosopher Alfred North Whitehead developed an alternative basis for categories in his book Process and Reality in the description of the Category of the Ultimate. Whitehead developed an intricate textual description of a number of categories, linked to the Category of the Ultimate, including eight Categories of Existence, nine Categoreal Obligations and 27 Categories of Explanation. Whitehead introduces terms such as being for existence, becoming for transformation by prehension with concrescence, nexus for a society and propositions for logic in the broader sense.


Whitehead's Categories can be considered in terms of mathematical categories as products (times) or union (plus), such as in prehension or nexus. Concrescence is adjointness between times and plus, giving the closure to create a locally Cartesian closed category as a becoming. The Category of the Ultimate is creation from the singular colimit through many disjunctive collections (plus) and their many conjunctions (times) to the singular limit. This paper argues that the Category of the Ultimate corresponds closely to a topos as in Lawvere’s work in category theory in 1969 with the progression from colimit (plus) to limit (times).


When Whitehead wrote his book in 1927-28, category theory did not exist. It was not until 1945 that Eilenberg and Maclane produced the first treatise on category theory. So the developments are independent of each other. Like category theory, based solely on the arrow, Whitehead's approach is single substance with no mind-matter separation as in the work of Descartes. Whitehead's focus though is much broader with the development of feelings and eternal objects to express metaphysical and biological constructions, with their complex types, as well as the simpler physical constructions and limited standard types of category theory. Whitehead does have empathy with Aristotle: his Category of the Ultimate is of Aristotle’s first substance, that is extensional, and his Defining Characteristic in the Nexus is of Aristotle’s second substance, that is intensional.


Building on the arrow of mathematical category theory, Whitehead’s work does therefore deserve to be treated as a philosophical basis for a more adventurous type of category theory with its additional emphasis on processes in general, including biological ones. An extensible type system for feelings, based on AI and biological concepts, will be required. [395 words]



Quite poignant without Michael Heather. I’ll acknowledge him in the full paper. This will be a consolidation of the ANPA 2022 paper; in ANPA 2023 intending to develop the feelings aspect of Whitehead’s approach; might do abstract for that on train tomorrow where travelling 1st class. Pity yesterday passed so limply: belated romantic greetings to the gorgeous one: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!



February 13th: maximum 7C, minimum -4C, sunny, light S, dry, mild midday but hard frost at night in the ‘Shire. This was black Monday: miserable failure giving up early after 5 hours with renewed retention and necessary resolution. Hoping there’s a silver lining in that I can go private quickly for HoLEP, which offers a more permanent cure. Never had an operation in my life but think this is way forward. Worst thing would to be patched up with regular malfunctioning. Keeping positive: still down to London on Thursday to see Tannhäuser, meeting up with sis at Prima Sapori D'Italia in Tavistock Street. And out tonite at G4g+wh4s to meet A/R/P with A on to cheer me up! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 12th: maximum 8C, minimum 1C, dull, light S, dry, mild but cooler at night with ground frost. Full backup of all piccie files for 2022 to two external drives today. Added line to end of News above, highlighting trips to France this year:

12/02/23: Honey-buzzard in France: in trips this year, lasting 3 weeks in all, to Marciac in July and Chamonix in August found 3 and 2 sites occupied respectively. See Marciac 2022 and Chamonix 2022 for details.

Critical day tomorrow. Into NCL soon to make whole day at Freeman easier. Funds were actually minus 8k on week, not minus 20k: had removed from credits arrears of interest but not added payments received to cash. Friday did feel like a bad day though for markets sentiment-wise; still maybe in late stages of bear market rather than in a solid bull market; a lot depends on how quickly China recovers economically from its zero Covid policy. Looking forward to Opera North’s week up here from March 21st; booked for their receptions on 21/3 and donated £50 to their charity fund. Hope the gorgeous one is fine: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 11th: maximum 9C, minimum 6C, dull, moderate SW, dry, mild. Rounding off 2022 raptor year with NEWS highlights above. Here is a summary of Marciac Honey-buzzard records:

Marciac, France: (3/7-20/7): noted at 3 localities,4 birds: 3 male, 1 female. Birds fairly active presumed foraging for food for medium- to large-sized young. 1) at Juillac SW/Bourret at 136-226m with 4/7 a female floating over the area; 5/7 a female coming out of a small copse to S of villa and moving back E at low altitude; 8/7 another male high up over the presumed site to S; 9/7 picking up at Bourret a female in territory over a wood, trying to keep kite away from its nesting area, up over the E end of wood; 9/7 The heat kept most birds low in the afternoon but first up at 17:45 as it cooled down a bit was a female circling for some time over the small woods on the ridge;; 11/7 a male flying briefly along ridge; 15/7 a female up over site, hanging over area before drifting off SW. 2) at Juillac NE/Marciac NW 136-226m with 5/7 a male up to NE of the Villa over the wood at 18:08 (habitat) by a river (known breeding site); 8/7 a male high over the site to NE drifting S towards Juillac. 3) at Auriébat at 144-262m, 9/7 much further to SW had a male Honey-buzzard in contention with a Black Kite adult.

Added Trip Report for Marciac, Gers, France, visit in July 2022 (Marciac 2022), including birds, butterflies, and fuller notes on Honey-buzzard. Pleased to have got the French raptor records sorted so thoroughly for my 3 week’s of visits in 2022. It is an amazing country for birds of prey! Made DoW with D/D for gr8 chat: Denise was a nurse at Freeman so plenty of info! Will be switching NB tomorrow: 2023 here we come! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 10th: maximum 9C, minimum 7C, dull, moderate SW, dry, mild. Completed final tasks for Marciac 2022 trip report, finding in evening that can milk it more for Honey-buzzard, both habitat and the odd piccie of an adult lurking in the large number taken. So need a clear head to sort out final corrections for Honey-buzzard in the morning on BirdTrack, this NB and the trip report. Have 3 sites in Juillac area for Honey-buzzard on which notes and piccies will be recorded in the trip report. Sociable morning: chatted to N/D on Skype for an hour and met M/B at T4m4l. Funds did not improve at end of week with loss wtd c20k after last week’s bonanza; full figures 2moro. Have booked up Leonardo in ScR for Sunday nite to be in good shape for the big p day!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 9th: maximum 5C, minimum 4C, bright, moderate W, dry. Struggling to get much done at the moment. Made Sele GP for bp measures by nurse who insisted I saw a doctor, before leaving, to take further action. That was 09:50, got in to see doctor at 10:50; she was actually very proactive, prescribing me amlodipine, giving me a flu jab, declined Covid jab, weighing me, taking blood sample for further tests and arranging appointment for 6/3. RVI did take some bloods and they reported liver, kidney, calcium, nitrites, all OK, and no anaemia. There were 2 displaying Oystercatcher over Hexham Hospital and 2 Mistle Thrush on wires at Letah Wood plus a Blackbird singing at Ordley at 17:00. Had to come back for prescription, then made QHC/QHL for most of afternoon while S at home cleaning. Got Munich abstract up to 337 words – 400 words is target – so good progress and plenty still to say. Best abstracts involve competition for inclusion! . Made G4g+wh4s with R/A/P for good chat, finding that now 5 out of 6 of us in the back room were on the same bp drug even one who has done all the Munro! Did get France July 2022 files ready but still a few amendments needed. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 8th: maximum 7C, minimum 2C, some sunny spells, light S, dry. Gritters out, possible ground frost and sleet overnight. Completed processing piccies from Juillac for 4/7-5/7 so everything done here except to compile the totals tomorrow. Actually found the female Honey-buzzard up briefly over Juillac SW on 4/7, a day before what was thought to be the first sighting. Another quiet day but did make QHC/QHL to start Munich 2023 International Whitehead Conference: need an abstract of 400 words so expand one for ANPA; meeting is being held in University of Munich at School of Philosophy, close to the Biergarten, from 26-29 July 2023; see they have a Leonardo close to the School. . Will have another go tomorrow as cleaner S is coming in afternoon. Managed 4k steps today, bit below par but am taking a rest. More work on wintering Black Kite on EuroBirdPortal. See distribution maps for 26 Nov-2 Dec 2022 1 and 22 Jan-28 Jan 2023 2 in comparison with Swallow (lhs). Amazing numbers of Swallow now overwintering in SW Iberia and a few Black Kite in western Europe (France, Spain, Portugal, Denmark, Sweden, Holland) with many more in Israel, all probably overwintering Russian birds. Up early tomorrow for visit to nurse at GPs at 09:50 for check. Seeing M on Friday at T and D/D on Saturday at DoW but first-up is G4g4s tomorrow evening. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 7th: maximum 8C, minimum 4C, some sunny spells, light SW, dry. Had singing Mistle Thrush and Nuthatch at Ordley this morning. Had 205 users accessing Honey-buzzard (and kite) pages today, so 435 user-sessions over 2 days. Continued to work on France July 2022 records, completing 8/7 from scratch and 6/7-7/7 from partial work done when in Juillac. Got records in 2023 up to date and removed a few ‘More to follow’ where I’ve not now got anything to add. Left some in which need attention. Also need to augment 4/7-5/7 piccies from Juillac, to complete the work there.

Have followed up Black Kite records since last ones on these pages on 19/10. Here they are from BirdGuides:

11:31 13/01 Black Kite Kent Walderslade 11:29 one soaring over M20 east of Blue Bell Hill 2023

12:07 26/12 Black Kite Dorset West Morden one circling to north near The World's End, Almer 2022

11:20 12/12 Black Kite Jersey St Ouen's Pond escaped adult bearing jesses still

10:37 10/12 Black Kite Jersey St Ouen's Pond 10:27 one still; also Pink-footed Goose still

17:26 09/12 Black Kite Jersey St Ouen's Pond one still; also Jack Snipe

11:35 08/12 Black Kite Jersey St Ouen's Pond 11:14 one still; also Pink-footed Goose still

08:38 06/12 Black Kite Jersey St Ouen's Pond 08:36 still

13:22 05/12 Black Kite Jersey St Ouen's Pond 13:21 one

10:03 01/12 Black Kite East Yorkshire Holmpton 09:51 one arrived low in off the sea then flew north-west

11:04 24/11 Black Kite Gloucestershire Eastington one drifted towards Frampton-on-Severn late morning

13:57 23/11 Black Kite KentIstead Rise 12:15 one reported over sheep field at Wrotham Road 2022


Well this is unprecedented, never have Black Kite wintered like this before in the UK, even though one medium-stay is in Jersey and may be an escape. For some perspective see “Black kites wintering in Europe: estimated number, subspecies status, and behaviour of a bird wintering on Crete and Turkey” I. Literák, V. Reháková,S. Xirouchakis, J. Škrábal &V. Starenko https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/24750263.2022.2137253. Extract from abstract says it all:


Black kites of the nominal subspecies Milvus migrans migrans breed in Europe and winter regularly in sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. As a new phenomenon, black kites with morphological characteristics of the subspecies Milvus migrans lineatus are observed in Europe. Based on observations of black kites in winter 2020/2021 summarized in this paper, based on other recent reports about wintering black kites in Europe and based on juvenile black kite tagged on Crete and tracked for two years, we conclude that hundreds to thousands of black kites are now regularly wintering in south of Europe, and in smaller numbers in other parts of Europe as well as in northern Africa. The growing number of wintering black kites in Europe is apparently caused by members of the population from a hybrid zone between M. m. migrans and M. m. lineatus breeding east of the Urals, i.e. from the area of the European part of Russia.


Suspect the status of the Black Kite in the UK needs a radical rethink, both for breeding and wintering!


Had another quiet day except for haircut with the lively Jd at JG, usual cost 19.50 + 5.50 bonus. Almost forgot it, was about to start leisurely breakfast at 09:45 when noticed an alert on ‘phone from Google Calendar for 10:00 at JG. Swiftly dressed and dashed down in the car, ‘phoning her at 10:00 to say would be 10 min late. All OK though following customer did not look delighted. Jd was very pleasant about it. Shows I’m still a bit distracted. Actually feeling OK today; this is as predicted with users getting more energy back after the first few days on the drug. No alcohol today but cannot cut coffee/tea consumption! Did do almost 5k steps today with walk to JG from Elvaston and some housekeeping tasks at home. Will make QHL and QHC tomorrow to resume Whitehead work but will skip G. Funds down 10k so far this week on profit taking, think may perk up by end of week on recent pattern. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!


February 6th: maximum 9C, minimum 4C, some sunny spells, light W, dry. Made great progress on closing 2022, completing 15/7, also adding Little Owl from 4/7-5/7 Juillac and Little Egret piccies from Tyne Green at Hexham in November. Decided to do a final trawl for piccies, starting with 8/7 Marciac. Will also look for Honey-buzzard piccies 2022 in study area. Need to do all this as once close 2022, matters are fixed, maybe overlooking useful future evidence. Had 230 users access Honey-buzzard pages today. Determined to keep social life going: R @ B4m4l for good company and G4g+wh4s with R/A/P and A on; should add the whisky (with ginger ale) replaces my 2nd Guinness to reduce the liquid flow at constant alcohol! Feeling brighter today, maybe getting more used to drug and also recovering from the severe stress. Walked over 5k steps, including walk around Sele after R, where had 13 bird-types in the park including 2 Nuthatch and a Pied/White Wagtail. Had a Chestnut Moth at Letah Wood and a Brown Rat in my kitchen (briefly, not welcome, chased it out!). French records for 2022 now total:

82 species from 354 records, 18 complete lists, 33 places

Planning hotel stays in NCL next week at L to facilitate Freeman arrival at 08:15 on Monday and early start for London on the Thursday. Gr8 to hear from the mgo: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 5th: maximum 5C, minimum -1C, some sunny spells, light W, light frost by evening. Have taken last day 15/7 as far as labelling piccies, need to reduce them in size, add to web pages, index them, submit to BirdTrack and then 2022 records are complete. Does include final sighting of female Honey buzzard at SW of Juillac (12207). Did make G4g+wh4s with R/A/P 4 gr8 chat with A on! Caught up on correspondence wtgo: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 4th: maximum 9C, minimum 1C, some sunny spells, light SW, becoming cooler by evening. Took it easy today, finally getting opportunity for rest over the weekend as feeling jaded. Did make DoW4g+wh4s to see D/D 4 good chat. Have long day at Freeman on 13/2 (from 08:15 for at least 6 hours), checking my performance (basically filling me up with water and seeing what happens!). If pass can just stay on drug and be semi-discharged. Otherwise HoLEP is suggested, that’s laser treatment, not a South American dance! Obviously will need to await outcome but will certainly go private to reach speedy closure if necessary; cost appears to be 8.5k + 1.5k for convalescence. Visit to London has become very rushed with the new appointment on 13/2 and allowing for any follow-up checks; now is just 16/2 down in morning-17/2 back in morning. Have made further progress on French records with just one day left now, 15/7. Latest position for 2 French trips in 2022 is:

80 species from 322 records, 17 complete lists, 28 places

Will continue to take it easy tomorrow, should get close to completing French records and hence NB 2022! But will make G4g+wh4s. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 3rd: maximum 9C, minimum 7C, cloudy, fresh W breeze, little drizzle, very mild. More moths today on drive back from CAL at 22:30: Early Moth – 3 at Callerton, 3 at Hexham S, 6 at Letah Wood, 3 at Ordley, plus a Mottled Umber at Hexham S. Snowdrops at Ordley are thriving and a Brown Hare was on the verge outside my house as drove in. Had a great musical day, going to L&P at 13:00 for SR’s Bach violin sonata 2: not for the faint-hearted, particularly m1-2 (grave and fugue) with much double stopping. M3-4 (andante, allegro) seemed not quite so challenging, sweeter. Very well played and enjoyable! Made CT4s4ll before making L&P for a catch up on their latest acquisitions; they must have a Wagner fan on their panel as found 3 books on him. Then over to S where had tea and met a few more partners M/S/T/L. Choral concert was very imaginative and creative, starring RNS orchestra and chorus and Samling soloists, keeping up the flow of marvellous music over the last 2 weeks. Concert started with Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus, a work only discovered in 2005, continued with Caroline Shaw’s Is a rose and finished after the interval with Bach’s Magnificat. Shaw’s work was only written in 2019: the moving work was based on poets such as Burns. The Magnificat was just that, giving a marvellous powerful effect, with opportunities taken by Samling singers in their big chance. Chatted with partner PB and friend afterwards and she dropped me back to CAL. Funds were +48k on week, that's +87k ytd gross, +80k net. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 2nd: maximum 9C, minimum 8C, sunny spells, fresh W breeze, little drizzle in the wind, very mild. Made HEX hospital to get some medical supplies, to bridge gap between a week from last Sunday and appointment at Sele on 9/2; quite efficient, nurse took control and sorted it all out. Made T4m4l on own as M tied up with family. Compiled Juillac 12/7 leaving just 2 visits to go, 14/7 and 15/7, marvellous! Did make G4g4s with E on and R/A/P for good chat. Feeling a little vulnerable but determined to keep to normal activities with violin sonata at L&P 2moro lunchtime (SR) and Bach Cantata in evening at S. So delighted to hear from someone!!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

February 1st: maximum 7C, minimum 5C, sunny spells, fresh W breeze, occasional heavy showers. Noted more signs of late winter with 3 Kestrel on way/back from CAL on A69: singles at Corbridge E and Horsley at 10:30 and another at Rudchester at 14:00. Remembered a Song Thrush singing at RVI at 06:30 on 29/1. A Common Buzzard today was feasting on a Woodpigeon on road near Ordley at 16:30: not sure whether the pigeon was knocked down by a vehicle or was pounced upon. Did make hospital via CAL, Metro to Longbenton and walk: amazed how short the walk was, people told me to drive as too far to walk! Had consultation at 12:30, not long, digital rectum examination plus manipulation of lower abdomen was chosen technique, confirmed as BPH, mightily relieved!! Now take drug for 30 days and they will see how you go! Drove back to HEX, made QHC4ll and then home; ordered some more ovoids (5 bags) and small doubles (2 bags). Given up grapefruit as interferes with drug but keeping on cranberry juice as good for drainage system. Had mega surprise on investments today with dog of a bond ERO1 making an interest payment it missed in October. The bond almost tripled in price from 10% to 29% (busted bond!). Funds wtd now +38k at a new all-time high, beating level on 12/09/2022 by 11k. Got a grateful response from Barbara for my ANPA submission. Done labelling the piccies for 12/7 Marciac; hoping to finish processing this day tomorrow. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 31st: maximum 6C, minimum 3C, mainly cloudy, fresh W breeze, heavy showers through day. Completed processing Marciac 13/7, actually road journey to Toulouse Airport and back to fetch nephew and wife. Three days to go now: 12/7, 13/7, 15/7, mainly in Marciac. Highlight of day was submitting ANPA paper as given in August 2022 at Liverpool University. Will be giving an enhanced version to the Whitehead conference at Munich in late July 2023 and more on the feelings and emotion at the next ANPA in August 2023.

Logic and Emotion: Whitehead's Category of the Ultimate

Nick Rossiter, Michael Heather

Computer and Information Sciences

Northumbria University, Newcastle NE1 8ST, UK. pdf file for submission 34pp (given at ANPA 2022, submitted 2023)

This was Mike’s major interest: think he would have found some closure in this. Had really long sleep last night, not up to noon but feeling wider awake now! Going to bed early to feel fresh in morning. Funds -2k wtd, noticed that all weeks start with a small sell-off. Hope someone’s relaxing after the tremendous event: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 30th: maximum 6C, minimum 3C, mainly cloudy, fresh W breeze, dry. After hearty breakfast in hotel, son away after a trip to Laing Gallery for Welwyn. Very good to see him again: he’s so knowledgable on more modern composers. I came home, feeling both exhilarated by all the music and drained by the incident. Had calls while on train from Freeman to arrange full examination on Wednesday and my Sele Practice in Hexham to check if anything needed and to see me on 9/2. Collected medicine Tamsulosin, an alpha blocker, from Boots in Hexham and started treatment; the RVI issued me a prescription for it. NHS seems all joined up! Out to G4g4s to meet R/A for good chat. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 29th: maximum 5C, minimum 3C, mainly cloudy, fresh W breeze, dry. After the night of pain, made HoN4m4l at 13:15 with son/M, roast beef was on the menu, some restoration. Then the 3 of us went to QH at 15:00 to see Bradley Creswick and Margaret Fingerhut in concert; was almost full, great to see such support in HEX; they played a Beethoven sonata, no. 8, a Dvorák romance, some Roumanian Dances by Bartók and Elgar’s violin sonata in E minor. Loved the Roumanian Dances and the Beethoven and Elgar sonatas were played in good style. BC played his customary wild encore! Then into NCL by train, to check into Leonardo in Scotswood Road, get Uber up to Uni in Kings Hall (close to where had been earlier in day at RVI!) and attend closing night of the Festival. We had 3 soloists (AR/GR/DG) working hard to great effect: playing in the main concert a violin sonata and a piano trio by Henriette Bosmans and a cello sonata by Fania Chapiro. Thought the HB pieces were passionate and lilting, rather like Poulenc perhaps. The Chapiro piece was very dynamic with lots of stirring passages. The Festival closed with its 2023 Special Commission: Prach Boondiskulchok’s PIANO TRIO II: Songs Without Words; this was quite different from the preceding in style of Buddhist/Thai but had the common theme of silencing voices of dissent. This was quite a hit with the large audience; a lot of people said how much they enjoyed this atmospheric piece. Really appreciated the refreshments and the programme notes by sis. Very pleased with social afterwards, managed to keep awake with the stimulation of it all!! Back with son to hotel by Metro, long sleep ahead! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 28th: maximum 6C, minimum 2C, mainly cloudy, moderate but gusty W breeze, dry. Had 2 Oystercatcher over Hexham Station at 23:30: more signs we’re into late winter. What a great idea it was to have a jazz event added to the Festival programme. Such a good attendance and atmosphere with trad jazz as would have been played by the Ghetto Swingers in the Theresienstadt concentration camp. This was the main theme, including numbers by Duke Ellington and Gershwin. Particularly liked JH on trombone and EF on violin. Even had a spot of dancing!! Everyone enjoyed it! We travelled by train in and out and took the easy walk to the Globe in Railway Street, a great location. Not so good later 28/1-29/1 night. Suffering from Acute UR (not heart, lungs), getting steadily worse through the night, in great pain and not able to sleep. Eventually at 05:15 had another close read of NHS 111 and accepted this was a condition that needed emergency treatment as it was life-threatening. Booked in for RVI A&E at 06:30, drove in from Hexham, arrived 06:30 at triage, nurse confirmed diagnosis at 06:40, treatment and massive relief at 06:50, saw 4 nurses and 2 doctors overall, discharged at 11:00 and drove home. Can certainly say that staff at RVI were very competent and warm. Decided to continue with the 2 concerts already planned for the Sunday 29/1. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!.

January 27th: maximum 4C, minimum 2C, mainly cloudy, light W breeze. A busy day!! Made S4m4t with the Sh very kindly inviting some pp and friends to dinner there in the B. Company was gr8 if a little delicate!! Concert afterwards was very poignant, being in remembrance of Lars Vogt our recent director: Mozart and Dvorák: Remembering Lars Vogt. Both elegant composers with music perfectly aligned for RNS with DS conducting well and everyone a bit emotional. Mozart’s Fugue in C minor was a stirring piece, with some typical follow-me playing. Dvorák’s Serenade for Strings was quite smooth and lilting, very fitting for the occasion. Imogen Cooper was the pianist in Mozart 23; she also gave a moving address on LV, including his resilience to the end in June, playing when he looked quite ill, reminiscent of his performance at the Sage in May of Beethoven’s ultra-difficult Hammerklavier sonata. She played this popular PC of Mozart with grace in mv 1-2 and energy in mv 3. Finally we had Dvorák’s Czech Suite, another piece with many elegant melodies and a final flourish, appropriate for the evening. Stayed for a drink with son, who also enjoyed the concert. It was so busy, the S does well at this end of the evening. Came back to HEX on last train, surprised to find main street cordoned off: there was a murder earlier in Priestpopple of a 15-year girl: horrific. Funds +6k on week after 2k withdrawal with house builders and tech doing well. ANPA 2022 paper is completed, except for 3 quotes on Categories of Existence: will they add to the paper? Great relief!! Today it’s jazz at the NCL G, not HEX one. Keeping pressure up, going to a BC/MF concert at QH in HEX on Sunday afternoon and closing concert at KH, NCL, in evening, staying overnight with son departing at lunchtime Monday back to WEL. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 26th: maximum 5C, minimum 2C, sunny intervals, light NW breeze. Son arrived, made FitzG4c4t, MP4m4t and then out to Festival drama in darkest GHD via Uber! The performance centred on the works of Erich Korngold, conjuring up some beautiful images. The actors and musicians gelled well; overall feelings portrayed were the tensions between Korngold’s old and new homes (6000 miles apart) and between his musical ideas, bridging both tonal and atonal ideas. The musicians all played well: AR with great feeling, NE with great timing and stamina, TC with appropriate aggression. Loved the closing song from AA/IM (from die tote Stadt, the dead state). Very well directed by RH. So another great evening! Another Uber back to Central Station, VctCmt4g4s, train NCL-HEX where picked up car. 2moro it’s turn of the RNS, with early dinner courtesy of Sh and poignant concert in memory of LV, our former director who sadly died recently. Son is coming but not to our dinner. So looking good. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 25th: maximum 8C, minimum 1C, sunny, light W breeze. Decided to work from home as this late stage of proof reading is better done on the desktop with large screen and powerful processor. Have first ½ of paper (17pp) in final form now, still reading closely the second ½ (also 17-18pp). Processed 16/7 at Juillac, France – intensive study of Black Kite and Black-winged Kite, both fledging, in the heat (40C); up to 76 species now. Next up is 13/7, mainly trip in evening to fetch nephew and partner from Toulouse Airport so an exercise in locating places on the map, then just 12/7, 14/7, 15/7 to do. Back to a little genealogy: adding Agnes Stevens as daughter of John Stevens (1591-1654); next step is to add children of Thomas Roceter of Hill Farrance (mentioned in John Stevens’ will), who took up their father’s occupation of tailor in Taunton in Somerset and Cullompton in Devon. Looking forward to theatre concert tomorrow; should be joined by son, flying back from Istanbul in the morning. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 24th: maximum 8C, minimum 7C, sunny, light W breeze. Late-winter weather encouraged some energetic gardening: cut ½ of rose hedge and ½ of party hedge my side. Finished compiling records for 11/7 in Marciac – quite a heavy day for records. Next up is 16/7, leaving just 4 dates to compile on completing that one. French running total for all of 2022 (Marciac, Chamonix):

75 species from 261 records, 15 complete lists, 21 places

Don’t think I’m going to add many more species from the few days left! This is the one remaining task to complete NB 2022 so getting high priority. Received penultimate notice on ANPA submission. Film at TC – Tár – late nite showing was much deeper and darker than I expected; thought it might be a female conductor triumphing against the odds and indeed she does triumph for a while but she makes far too many enemies of her close associates, including a number of gone awry implicit sexual transactions with young female composers and performers. Well worth watching with Mahler 5 and Elgar’s cello concerto worked on in the story. Finished late at 22:50 but made haste 2 c the gorgeous one: indeed she certainly is: lok2tgrf: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Got Uber back to base for £17: well worth the time!! Early Moth numbered 1 at Hexham Beaufront, 7 Loughbrow to Letah Wood, 13 at Newbiggin. A rabbit was at Throckley and a Tawny Owl was again calling at Ordley as came back at 00:25 25/1. Feeling sleepy: 2moro it’s QHL/QHC for further work on ANPA, G4g4t and nite in preparing for son’s arrival on Thursday evening. xx

January 23rd: maximum 8C, minimum 6C, cloudy, thaw completed, light W breeze. Caught 10:46 express NCL to HEX, only 31 min! Used BirdTrack app on my android ‘phone to record using GPS a Pied Wagtail near hotel, a LBBG ad at Blaydon, a GBBG ad at Newburn, 60 Canada Goose at Wylam E, 3 Goosander (ad drake, 2 redhead) at Wylam Horsley – all so easy. Then QHL for 40 min followed by R at B4m4l where taking money – all went smoothly. Speaker was from auctioneers A&G, looking at antique items brought in – very interesting, didn’t submit anything myself! Funds recovered last week’s losses today. Off to G now where did meet A/R 4 gr8 chat! P’s in Madeira. Planning 2 c Lydia Tár 2moro!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Another sign of late winter: at 23:30 31 Early Moth on road between Loughbrow and Letah Wood and 4 at Ordley, where also a Mottled Umber. These are the first moths of the year, both species with flightless females.

January 22nd: maximum 4C, minimum 0C, dull, slow thaw, few icy lumps left, light E breeze. What a marvellous concert – surely to go down as a Weinberg classic really pulsating and exciting. Congratulations to everyone involved!! Programme notes were very detailed and useful, compiled by LU who gave a comprehensive introduction to the life and works of Mieczyslaw Weinberg. In the music starting at 19:40 Old Letters cycle made for a sombre opening, dealing with old age and death, KB and KA had the mood right. Sonata for two violins was very vigorous, harsh in parts, played almost competitively by RM/AR: very moving! Aria (opus 9) and Capriccio (opus 11) were performed by string quartet (NK/RM/DZ/LU). These were more mellow and lyrical and gave a good contrast with the Two violins. Jewish Songs was written in 1943, a terrible time for Jews, and was initially published as Children’s Songs to avoid ill-publicity. The songs are sorrowful, performed with great emotion by KB, ably supported by AR/LU and YK. Interval followed! Then we had more distressed singing by KB in Acacias, accompanied by KA. Final piece was extraordinary: Piano Quintet opus 18 with KA starring on piano accompanied by RM/NK/DZ/LU as a string quartet. It did indeed sound at times like a piano concerto accompanied by a string quartet. This was a very meaty item with a long Largo movement 4 which in its slowness and deliberateness contrasted greatly with the other movements. A very expressive piece making a great ending to the concert at 22:08. Difficult to pick a favourite but remember the Two Violins for its excitement, the Jewish Songs for their capture of desperation and the Piano Quintet for grandeur and sheer variations. Refreshments were appreciated: had good chat to NK/DZ!! But above all organiser needs to step forward for her drive and creativeness!! Staying in L, very comfortable, Uber getting me back there in style (£8.68 + 2 tip): no Metro (closed Gosforth to Airport over weekend) or Northern (last train to HEX 20:30) to help tonite. Could be TC on Tuesday. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Did get done some very useful work on ANPA paper in travels and at hotel, doing a complete read-through. Decided there was too much clutter of quote marks and lack of consistency in use of case (consequence of written over a long period) so made a determined effort to standardise notation. There were a few actual errors but not many. By ttime on 23/1 had got a version that’s easier to read. Next stage is to go through in detail checking every formula, every diagram, all cross-references, without formatting distractions. Will have it ready in time for 1 Feb deadline.

January 21st: maximum 3C, minimum -4C, brilliant sunshine, 2cm snow melting and compacting, light E breeze. Hard frost late evening with car showing -4C as approached Ordley. Did some habitat surveying today getting out to Shilford in Tyne Valley W from 12:15 to 14:00, stopping at Lower Shilford lay-by, West Broomley and Riding Mill pumping station. Had 5 Lapwing (signs of spring) and a female/1w male Stonechat at West Broomley, quite a surprise, plus 16 Fieldfare and 2 Common Buzzard at Lower Shilford and West Broomley. Total was 18 bird-types plus some mole. This is site no.28 for Honey Buzzard habitat survey. Had a Tawny Owl calling at Ordley at 23:00: first heard for a while, anticipating spring? Snowdrops first app[eared on edge of my field a week ago (14/1) just before the snow. Is it really going to warm up 2moro; this cold spell has been consistently underestimated by the forecasters. Profit taking this week in all areas of the markets after the bright start to the year, own funds are minus 9k on week; did expect first half of year to be more difficult than second half. In evening made DoW4g4s with D/D 4 good chat with A putting on the style!! Sorted out negative prehensions for the moment; think they’re invalid as they don’t commute but Whitehead’s ideas are a little more complex than this; like the idea of them being inoperative. Looking forward to start of Festival tomorrow. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 20th: maximum 4C, minimum -4C, rather grey all day, 3cm snow melting and compacting, light NW breeze. Hard frost late evening with car showing -3.5C as approached Ordley. Concert was brilliant, the Scottish Fantasy by Bruch was a cheery, lively start with confident Timothy Chooi soloist on the violin and the Bruckner was played really well, none of the blur you sometimes get but a very clear sound and great distinction between the quiet bits and the stirring climaxes. Domingo Hindoyan was the conductor and he confirmed later in the bar that he’s a great admirer of Bruckner, not acknowledging at all that he’s inferior to Mahler. The climaxes in the symphony were played really well, very moving! Good social day having t at S with A/RS and meeting L/M/S/T again. Amazing afterwards – gr8 action – lok2tgrf: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Next concert is on Sunday, staying over at L (JI) for comfort!! 2moro it’s DoW4g4s with D/D. xx

January 19th: maximum 2C, minimum 0C, bright morning, then more overcast, 4cm snow melting and compacting, moderate W breeze, wind-chill -4C. Felt really cold today with sun less obvious and stronger breeze. Made T4m4l with M/B – good crack and vegetarian food – nice once a week! Made progress on French July records, indexing piccies for 9/7, 10/7 and 17/7 so 6 days to go now 11/7 to 16/7. Dealt with categorification in ANPA paper in closing section, next up is negative prehension. Did get to G4g4s where met A/P/R for good chat with S on and L looking good!! 2moro evening it’s off to the S 4 concert by Royal Liverpool: will eat in NCL b4 concert and think will go to CAL as car needs an airing!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 18th: maximum 2C, minimum -2C, bright and sunny, 6cm deep snow, light W breeze, wind-chill -7C. Another bitter day but road’s now clear so into W4bigshop (£72), QHL, QHC4s4ll, QHL, G4g4t. Very productive day, completing last paragraph of ANPA paper and now going through some material put to one side to see if there’s a place for it now. Globe was very enjoyable: good to meet mates again but sadly no B, he’s very poorly with no weight on to sustain himself. I've been playing Wagner’s Das Liebesverbot DVD several times now. The production by Teatro Real of Madrid is lively, very colourful and with well-drilled large chorus. It's got some catchy tunes, including the overture, and is very much in the Italian style, bit like Donizetti or Verdi, with the action moved from Vienna in Shakespeare's Measure for Measure, on which it's based, to Palermo. It's in 2 acts and is quite long though not as long as Wagner originally wrote it, when act 1 took 4 hours evidently. I think it's underrated, maybe overshadowed by the later works: I enjoyed it. It is also a genuine comedy, more so than Meistersingers. Conductor, who looked full of fun, was Rafael Khismatulin; Isabella, lead sexy nun, is played well by Manuela Uhl and Friedrich, chief baddy who wants to ban all fun, is played appropriately by Christopher Maltman. The large chorus is directed with great vivacity by Andrés Máspero. Haven't got round to the Fairies and Meyerbeer yet! Fun week approaches, including special dinner for some pp b4 the Lars memorial concert. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Birds today included a Brambling female-type at Ordley, a female Sparrowhawk at Hexham and 30 Fieldfare at Letah Wood, with one at Ordley.

January 17th: maximum 0C, minimum -1C, bright and sunny, 6cm deep, moderate W breeze, wind-chill -7C. Not out today, but planning to resume normal activities tomorrow. Big catchup on records with completion of Stanley Burn Honey Buzzard habitat survey and start on next one Shilford in Tyne Valley W, addition of Stanley Burn records to BirdTrack from 13/1, indexing of piccies for Juillac in France on 9/7, addition of John Stevens PCC will (died 1654) to WikiTree. Main activity of day was ‘attending’ Lawrence’s fine art sale in Crewkerne, Somerset, for 3 hours. Lawrence have been taken over by Auctionet, a Swedish auction company with centres all over Europe. It was high tech with a screen showing the auctioneer live, the current item’s particulars and a bidding panel with simultaneous bidding in the sale room by physical attendees, by telephone, by prior absentee bidding (like Ebay) and by pressing buttons on your screen over the Internet in real time by Auctionet and EasyBid. It was a prestigious Ag sale https://auctionet.com/en/events/474-winter-fine-art-sales-january-2023 with the interesting selling very well and the routine disappointing with some unsold. I was after old spoons and after being outbid on 6 items finally secured through Auctionet a matching pair Charles II trefid spoons for £0.6k. Pleased at that, was very competitive, my first choice was an Exeter trefid spoon Charles II which bid up to £500 pre auction but it went for £1100 (estimate £400 to 500). Humour is an essential feature of auctions: a small Dutch silver casket sold for £7200 against its estimate of £50 to 80. Somebody in the room asked how that could be! The auctioneer, tongue in cheek, said it was a typo – in fact the item must have been thought by the bidders to be 17th century or earlier which the cataloguer had missed: Dutch silver is notorious for misleading pseudo hallmarks so confusion can occur. Foreign silver sold well as it’s now easy to bid from anywhere in the world. Newcastle silver also sold well over the Internet. So interesting experience: like the feeling of being in the room and the easy high tech bidding. The whole computer system worked very well – no glitches. Back to ANPA 2moro in QHL with lunch at QHC and also need to shop at W and maybe G4g4s. Funds are unchanged wtd. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 16th: maximum 0C, minimum -4C, bright and sunny after spell of snow late in night, 8cm deep, light W breeze, whole area paralysed including even Hexham town. Gritting non existent, could see last night that precautionary gritting conspicuously absent. When will they wise up: gritting before the snow makes it safer for everyone and much easier to keep on top of the weather. They cannot blame the forecasters who were spot on with their warnings. So not out today: no R or G but people in Hexham living in the hilly areas as badly affected: what a shambles! Still at least the power stayed on and wrote a couple of critical paragraphs in the ANPA paper on what Whitehead (probably!) meant in his philosophy on feelings. Just one more critical paragraph to go – closing the discussion – and it’s proof reading time so expecting to make early Feb revised deadline. Almost completed tree analysis for Stanley Burn, mapped the different kinds and measured them with Google Earth, but need to work out final percentages for the trees on the spreadsheet. Aiming for next field visit on Wednesday morning. Have concerts on Friday and Sunday but weather improving by then. A certain website is very busy: that’s good!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 15th: maximum 3C, minimum -3C, weak sunny spells, dry, light W, turning cold with -1.5C at Letah Wood as came home and no gritting. It’s done!

From Honey-buzzard home page at http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/index.html:

15th January 2023: Updated Honey-buzzard page with breeding and migration data, core area maintained with usual high productivity, conspicuous migration in mid-September, for SW Northumberland in 2022 (Population of the Honey-buzzard in SW Northumberland).

Quiet day for change, except for G4g4s where 6 of us out like last Sunday and S on with L in attendance!! As above completed Honey-buzzard account for 2022 in study area and also started on remaining Marciac records doing 9/7 (Juillac, many Black Kite plus 3 Honey-buzzard) and 17/7 Toulouse, with piccies still in progress for these days. Think it will be end of the month b4 can call a close on 2022 as still have 10/7-16/7 to do. Do want to record piccies taken rather than rush things. . 2moro it’s R at B4m4l and G4g4s with continued catch-up on records for France 2022. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 14th: maximum 7C, minimum 1C, weak sunny spells, showers, fresh SW, cool by evening. Indeed as go to press with wind strengthening to gale force wind-chill is -6C at 01:00 15/1 with sleet forecast by 04:00. As drove back from DoW at 23:00 there was debris all over the road, much of it ash twigs from diseased trees. Going into a very stormy night but winds rapidly subsiding by dawn. Out to 16:10 sunset now, making 30 minute gain from solstice. Sunrise lags in improvement at 08:25 (+ about 10 minutes). Great achievement today was completing Honey-Buzzard report for 2022 and uploading it to server. Will publish it formally tomorrow after another read through. Will keep the 2022 NB going until complete Out of Area records (mainly Marciac, France, as positive sightings and a few negative reports) and the habitat for Tyne Valley E. Dinner with D/D at DoW was excellent: good chat and gr8 to meet A there again!! Cost was £135 for the 3 of us compared to £140 for the 4 of us at Zyka on Thursday. Think going to post this now b4 there’s a power cut! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 13th: maximum 7C, minimum 4C, sunny spells, showers, moderate SW, cool by evening. Celebration yesterday was in grand style at Zyka where had 3-courses of delicious Indian food, couple rw, with mates R/A/P followed by a couple of g at the G. This followed lunch at Tans with M. This morning had 1-hour chat with N/D on Skype, had to finish early as cleaner S arriving so went off to Stanley Burn to complete fieldwork for habitat for Tyne Valley E (all 8 sites, 27 sites in all). Had vigorous walk from 11:45-14:20 (7km walked) exploring the woods in all directions around the Stanley Burn; have to wear walking boots and all the winter gear as paths are slippery and wind chill is significant. The woods to N on Stanley Burn are owned by the Woodland Trust, not sure about woods to S, but it’s all good riverine habitat, quite unspoiled. By this evening had analysed the main categories of habitat but still to do is the detailed woodland analysis. Son has received autosomal DNA results from Ancestry: main ones 39% England, 18% Sweden and Denmark, 16% Eastern Europe and Russia,11% Germany. As with daughter the German element comes from me (now I know why: Sarah Sharman and co!). Funds had a good week at +25k making ytd +38k gross, +34k net after daughter’s birthday (also a Capricorn!). Commodity prices are firm on China re-opening but this is maybe going to keep inflation elevated, delaying recovery in N America and W Europe. Played around with TV a bit more, extending aerial fully and pointing it upwards, rescanned and now have 126 channels, including Classic FM and some Sky. 2moro is another meal out with D/D at DoW. Will sleep well tonite: like the beauty: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! lok2tgrf!!

January 11th: maximum 6C, minimum 3C, heavy showers, moderate SW, cool by evening. Did make the concert at Corbridge by 17-year old Tina. She was in Crimea up until 2014, when moved to Kyiv, followed by another move in 2022 to first Poland and finally Corbridge, where her mother and family are currently living, including her sister Sasha aged 11 who is also very talented at music. Corbridge and Hexham have taken in quite a few Ukrainian families evidently. Church was packed with no admission charge, just donations, half for relief in Ukraine, the other half for Tina’s expenses at Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, including her (unenvious!) weekly travel there. Today was a warm-up for performances in Dresden, Poland and America. She played beautifully 4 Chopin Ballade before the interval, followed by Rachmaninov's Piano Sonata No.1, typically dark and intricate, sounded fiendishly difficult but managed brilliantly. Donated £20 note plus £5 for rw in interval, where met a few fellow Rotarians. Escaped quickly to Black Bull in C where had another rw, before coming home. Was a good evening! Earlier made QHL from 13:30-17:00 where concentrated on eternal object diagrams in the paper, converting them to topos with a couple of extra arrows each and changing the name of one symbol; also looked carefully at what Whitehead means by emotion. Had good lunch of tuna sandwiches and salad at QHC. 2moro it’s Zyka in Hexham, an Indian restaurant, for supper with mates from G to celebrate the occasion; also having a regular chatty lunch with M at Tans, a vegetarian cafe. So Capricornians rule OK: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 10th: maximum 11C, minimum 5C, rain all day, heavy at times, fresh SW, milder. Completed processing habitat survey for Whittle Burn, no.27 in all and 7/8 for Tyne Valley E, Stanley Burn up soon to complete the set and also complete 3 areas: Devil’s Water, Allen, Tyne Valley E, with 3 sites done in Tyne Valley W, which is next area to complete. Did do W4bigshop, just £46 this week as going out for meals and well-stocked with food anyway. It was very quiet at W: grotty weather a factor, but gather it’s struggling with Lidl, Aldi and Tesco all close-by. Decided not to go to antiques fair at Wentworth – concentrating on special items, not found there. 2moro it’s back to ANPA 2022 in QHL with QHC4s4ll and G4t4rw b4 concert in evening at St Andrews, Corbridge, where young Ukrainian pianist Khrystyna Mykhailichenko plays Rachmaninov and Chopin in aid of Ukraine charities. Funds +1k wtd: cautious optimism is my feeling!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

A very interesting, but not unexpected, turn in my family research into my paternal grandmother's side. Bertha Friend, my paternal grandmother, has mother Sarah Dixon, who must be largely German to explain the DNA of myself and my father (derived from mine) as well as a 2nd cousin descended from Vera Friend, who was assigned 27% Ashkenazi DNA. Got Sarah Dixon's birth certificate today for 17 Feb 1842. She was born in Brampton, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, with father Charles Dixon and mother Sarah Dixon, maiden name Sharman (anglicisation of Sherman). Sherman is an Ashkenazi name, based on Schuermann in Germany, with occupational overtones in Yiddish as tailor 'scissors man'. Sarah Dixon's marriage around 1860 is very unusually absent from civil registration, suggesting she was married unconventionally, maybe even in a synagogue. No evidence yet for Charles Dixon's ethnicity. Will find out a bit more about Sarah Dixon’s life in London c1860 through census and maybe other records.

January 9th: maximum 5C, minimum 4C, weak sunshine, few light showers, moderate SW, cool. Made R @ B4m4l, very good lunch, talk was on supplying sanitary pads for poor families in tropical Africa! Had walk around Sele, not seeing much b4 coming home. Added Thomas Roceter’s (that's how they used to spell my name) Chancery case 1633 vs his mother-in-law Etheldred Keene to WikiTree; quite a lot of genealogical information including the fact that Thomas and Charity have diverse children but he doesn’t name them! Daughter’s birthday honoured with another 4k payment plus a giant card, champagne and chocolates. Out again to G4g4s with R/P/A and L in attendance!! Thursday to Saturday sees my birthday celebrations with 3 meals and a bar!! 2moro promises to be a washout so expect to get more work done in all respects. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 8th: maximum 6C, minimum 2C, cloudy, frequent showers, moderate SW, cooler. Had excellent walk in Whittle Dene surveying habitat for Honey-buzzard. Walked 11k steps in very muddy conditions through the Woodland Trust property, that’s 8km, and feeling much fitter afterwards. On 2/1 the day-came-back walked 13k steps around Richmond Park and at the Airports! Today’s walk from 12:35-15:20 took me from Prudhoe Station, over the bridge at the Tyne, through Ovingham up Whittle Burn, first to the NE then centrally up towards the A69. After returning to Station, drove along A69 to look at the habitat on the far N side. Had single Common Buzzard at Whittle Burn and Newton and single Kestrel at Styford E and Whittle Burn. Made Sh4c4t b4 going home and listening again to the lively Liebesverbot, think it’s rather like Verdi, will comment more soon. The production is by Teatro Madrid, the Spanish are keen on Wagner with son and I seeing Tristan und Isolde in Barcelona a while ago. Finally out to G4g4s where 6 of us out – very good : D/B/R/A/P and me with the lively A on!! Added my great-grandmother Sarah Friend’s will and probate grant (1928-1929) to WikiTree: she’s the interesting one from the DNA perspective, waiting for her birth certificate from 1842. Like the leaflet! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 7th: maximum 10C, minimum 5C, sunny morning after heavy rain, moderate SW, very mild. Caught up on 2022 bird records, adding those from London trip up to 31/12 to BirdTrack. Still have backlog from long trip to France at Marciac in July. Concentrated on Honey-buzzard habitat analysis today, completing Ryton Willows as site no.26 to be done; next up is Whittle Burn, also in Tyne Valley E. The habitat analysis gets me out in the field for exercise so regard it as important for fitness. Did watch on DVD Wagner’s Liebesverbot (forbidden love) in 2 acts. It’s a genuine comedy based on Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure and is quite Italian in style, set in Palermo. Basically the people want to have fun and a hypocritical ruler stops them. The plot is how to expose the ruler as an out and out hypocrite, which they succeed in doing at the end with masks and a temptress! Still working a bit on home, sawing off most of the very bottom of a guttering downpipe to get at the decomposing leaves, that are blocking it. TV continues to work well – it used to go off if a cloud came over! Made DoW4g4s with D/D and gr8 chat: it was very quiet – we’re having a meal there next week. Fancy a temptress myself: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 6th: maximum 9C, minimum 6C, sunny morning, fresh SW, heavy rain overnight, very mild. Working hard on Honey-buzzard report for 2022, compiling weather reports and the table 46 below, plus some commentary. So another piece of the 2022 jigsaw puzzle for Honey-buzzard: Table 46 shows the migration picture for Honey-buzzard in 2022:


Date

Time

Locality

Age/Sex

Count

Direction

Movement

'May 5

14:13


Stocksfield E (NZ06 Q)

Adult female

1

1 SW (then probably W)


maximum 14C, minimum 10C, light W breeze, some brief sunny spells and feeling humid, mild.. At 14:13 a female Honey-buzzard was spotted over the Stocksfield E ridge, moving SW, but probably aiming to eventually move W

'May 18

14:46


Swallowship (NY95 U)

Adult female

1

1 intruder


maximum 14C, minimum 8C, fresh W breeze, bright start, then mainly cloudy with one heavy shower.. Had 3 Honey-buzzard up for 10 secs at 14:46 over the ridge to W, very close together, in some contention, in the fresh breeze. Looked like 2 female and a male so maybe one female is a migrant, stalled on migration by the fresh winds, and is engaging with the resident pair. Honey-buzzard are not yet very visible this spring; they are spending most of their time feeding below the canopy rather than displaying.

'Sept 9

15:40


Shilford (NZ06 F)

Adult female

1

1 E

maximum 15C, minimum 13C, light NE, very gloomy day, heavy rain in bursts, no sun. A Honey-buzzard female soaring low-down over Shilford at 15:35 and moving smartly to E at low altitude and disappearing to view at 15:45

'Sept 9

15:50:00

Eltringham (NZ06 R)

Adult female

1

1 E

maximum 15C, minimum 13C, light NE, very gloomy day, heavy rain in bursts, no sun. 3 Honey-buzzard, a family group of female and 2 juvenile, up at Eltringham at 15:50, some display together but female then climbed high and disappeared E.

'Sept 11

11:52


March Burn (NY95 Z)

Adult female


1

1 S

maximum 19C, minimum 15C, light S becoming moderate, much brighter day, dry until 17:00 when light rain arrived on time. Main aim was Honey-buzzard where had a female up at 11:36 checking the area, joined up in the air by 2 juvenile at 11:49; she emigrated at 11:52, soaring higher and higher into the sky and moving S.

'Sept 13

12:39


Hexham (NY96 H)

Adult female

1

1 E

maximum 17C, minimum 10C, light NW, sunny all day, Did have a Honey-buzzard female soaring at 12:39 and moving off far to E (emigrating)

'Oct 7

18:00:00

Ordley (NY95 P)

Juvenile

1

rest

maximum 13C, minimum 7C, fresh SW, heavy rain in morning, sunny with heavy showers in afternoon. Went for local walk from 17:30-18:45 and bumped into a juvenile dark-phase Honey-buzzard (12120), which was floating around quite rapidly over the fields to NW of my house at Ordley

'Oct 8

14:34-14:49


Bywell (NZ06 L)

Juvenile 2

2

2 rest


maximum 12C, minimum 8C, moderate W, dry, sunny spells, clear by evening, felt warmer today. Had good field trip to Stocksfield Mount from 13:20-15:30, finding 2 Honey-buzzard juvenile, 1 over Eltringham at 14:34 (12121), other over Bywell Short Wood, heavily mobbed by Rook at 14:49 (12122)

Summary/

Comments:

 

 

 

 

 

 

May: 2

September: 4

October: 3




11-12: 1

12-13: 1

14-15: 1

15-16: 2

resting: 3

intruder: 1

Devil's Water: 2

Tyne Valley W: 7


Adult male: 0

Adult female: 6

Juvenile: 3

9


 

IN: 1 SW, 1 intruder

OUT: 1 S, 3 E, 3 resting

Coverage was good this year in spring but was poor in late summer and autumn through absences except for the first half of September..

The times may reflect observer activity as much as anything else. The times at which resting birds and intruders have been noted are not included in the analysis.

The most popular route noted this year was via Tyne Valley W in particular and the Devils' Water (together the core area) where much of the fieldwork was concentrated.

No males were observed in spring. The main emigration period for males is the second half of August when absent. My presence in the first part of September, the peak period for emigration of females, did reveal 4 emigrating females from 9/9 to 13/9 when big movement on BirdGuides. Coverage was weak in the main juvenile emigration period.

The total this year was below that of recent years except for 2019.

The predominant direction was E/S in autumn on a small sample.

Numbers on BirdGuides were exceptionally high this year suggesting that my relatively low totals are through observer absences rather than actual low numbers. On BirdGuides the annual total was 380 with spring total of 158 and autumn total of 222, about double recent totals. In June 87 were seen, indicating a late arrival. In September 136 were noted, suggesting a successful breeding season with 77 in 6 days from 9th-14th when NR recorded 4 females emigrating from the study area. These birds were recorded at S/SE England 28, Yorkshire 18, SW England 12, Midlands 6, NW England 4, Scotland 3, Channel Islands 3, East Anglia 2, Wales 1 (probably Irish bird at Pembroke). This is a typical pattern for British birds emigrating, moving S, with a slight E bias, from their breeding areas.

Table 46: Visible Migration Movements noted for Honey-buzzard in SW Northumberland in 2022


Chatted to N/D on Skype for 90 min; good to resume our meetings. 2moro evening it’s D/D at DoW. Yesterday was M at T4m4l and G4g4s with R/P/A. Some mates have been plagued with bad coughs and chest congestion for 2 weeks over the holiday period. Pleased I shook off that bug quickly on 27/12 – put down recovery to the amazing deep sleep I had at son’s place. Finally fixed my digital TV problems (I think!). Fitted a new indoor aerial (digital Freeview) with long cable so can put it at some height; it has an amplifier through USB off a slot on the TV and seems really good at picking up clean TV and radio signals. Saves replacing the old aerial on the roof, which is 38 years old and failing. Also fitted a 10m Ethernet cable to connect the BB Router directly to the smart TV; this is to improve the data (streaming) connection. Cost of both was £29 from Amazon with delivery 2 days after ordering. Giving talk to Hexham Rotary on “Lies, Damned Lies and Modelling” on 20/3 – should be lively! Funds have had an erratic week with some bear raids on 2 of my stocks on Tuesday. But Friday was a good day and funds finished week +16k with sentiment improving in commodity stocks as China reopens slowly and in housebuilders where house-price falls look to have been exaggerated. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!



January 4th: maximum 9C, minimum 6C, weak sunshine in morning, fresh W, heavy rain afternoon and evening, very mild. Sunset out to 15:56, moving later steadily now at 1 min a day. Pressed on with ANPA 2022 today, doing two more diagrams and a lot of polishing, a pleasing day in terms of progress, can now see the end (just as well with 1st Feb new deadline!), worked in QHL from 13:30-17:00 with a 45-min break for lunch in QHC, where pleased 2 c me again. Skipped G as another large party in progress; will connect with mates 2moro at lunch and in evening. Done quite a lot on Somerset ancestors 1550-1650 in last 2 weeks: they were very litigious minor gentry (fortunately for surviving records!). Think can spend some time on on Honey-buzzard tomorrow with closure near on ANPA. Delighted to hear from someone!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

January 3rd: maximum 8C, minimum 7C, weak sunshine, moderate S, very mild. House still warming up, almost there! Funds outperformed last year, rising 515k gross (+29.2% ) and 468k net (after withdrawals). This compares to ftse 100 (+0.9%), ftse 250 (-19.7%), dow (-8.8%), nasdaq tech (-33.1%), bitcoin (-64.1%). Tech, bitcoin and UK domestic did particularly badly and energy and mining shares relatively well. I’m not expecting 2023 to be smooth-going: an erratic and bumpy start to China’s reopening; inflation slow to decline with pressure both from shortages of natural resources and wage demands; interest rates plateau at a high level in relation to recent years; black swan events with Ukraine, Taiwan or whatever are always possible. But do think H2 will be better than H1 with brighter prospects for 2024. Anyway -2k wtd to start the New Year in the wrong direction. Daughter and son-in-law think I should buy a pied-à-terre on Quayside for cash to make travel easier: will seriously think about it, particularly in the light of current chaos on the trains but can buy a lot of hotel stays instead!. Rather fancy though a flat with views over the Tyne and some even have parking places! Will start a watching brief. Back to work 2moro on Honey-buzzard and ANPA. Booked seat for son at Vogt memorial concert. Played Mahler 5 today – stirring and romantic: like someone!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Journey back yesterday on BA at 19:55 LHR-NCL went well; daughter had given me a quartz crystal light which she assured me the security people would want to see and she was right! Solid frost on cars at NCL; did make G for quickie on way back. Daughter drove me to LHR; quite sad farewell with whole family as last time I’ll be seeing them before their Dubai adventure begins. Today (3/1) had a bonus: flight that had booked from EXT-NCL was cancelled so applied for refund!

January 2nd: had walk around Richmond Park W on own from 13:25-14:45, getting 18 bird-types including 46 Ring-necked Parakeet, 11 Collared Dove (some displaying), 4 Redwing, 3 Lesser Redpoll, 1 Green Woodpecker, 18 House Sparrow, 14 Starling.

January 1st 2023: maximum 12C, minimum 7C, dry morning, rain later, light SW, very mild. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Keeping up the walks with long one round Richmond Park yesterday and another around Kingston today. Feeding well with roast lamb last nite and roast vegetables at local pub this lunchtime. Whole family played 4-hour Monopoly this afternoon, intense and cut-throat, granddaughters taking part in the right spirit – won by daughter, teaming up in end with younger gd, plenty of anguish, competitiveness and spirit!

Another piece of the 2022 jigsaw puzzle for Honey-buzzard: table 45 gives a breakdown of the numbers of males, females and juveniles in each part of the season.


Area

No. sites in season

No. adults in season

Display 24/4-15/6

Rearing 25/6-16/8

Fledging 28/8-15/9

Gangs of juveniles post-breeding






Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Male

Female

Juvenile

Male

Female

Juvenile


Devil’s Water

6

6

4

10

5

4

2

0

0

2

0

9

0

Allen

4

3

2

5

2

2

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

Upper South Tyne

1

1

0

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

Lower South Tyne

2

2

1

3

2

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Tipalt

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Tyne W

8

5

6

11

4

4

2

1

0

2

4

12

0

Tyne E

2

2

1

3

2

0

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

Derwent

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

23

19

14

33

15

11

7

2

0

4

4

21

0

Table 45: Number of Male, Female and Juvenile Honey-buzzard found in each phase of breeding season in 2022


So getting there slowly; will do migrant table next, then weather and further commentary. A proper NE welcome 2moro weather-wise! Looking forward to return and particularly later in the month: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!


December 31st 2022: had quick walk around Latchmere walking back from pub where had roast beef lunch. Added 2 types to Richmond Park area list with 2 flirty Great Spotted Woodpecker and 2 calling Bullfinch. Also had 2 Fox, 4 Grey Squirrel and 7 Red Deer, the last from Isabella’s bedroom.


December 30th: maximum 13C, minimum 10C, rain all day, fresh SW, very mild. Worked out absences for 2022 Honey-buzzard season as below. Shows good coverage in display part, very poor in rearing phase and patchy in fledging phase. This helps to explain the very limited observations in the middle of the breeding season and the time-pressured nature in measuring the breeding success. Of course this is for Northumberland but there were benefits from further sightings in France, including some at altitude, plus early-season sightings in Crete. A further aggravation was damage (from collision with Roe Deer) to the car which did restrict my mobility from late July to late September. This will all go in the report.

4/4-18/4 Crete; 19/6-24/6 Budapest; 3/7-20/7 Marciac, France; 9/8-12/8 Liverpool; 16/8-28/8 Chamonix, France; 24/9-29/9 London, Leeds; 20/10-27/10 Devon

Plans for this trip were thrown into disarray by little sis and her hubby continuing very poorly with coughs so staying 2 days more with daughter and flying back LHR-NCL a day earlier instead of EXT-NCL. Was at big sis’ yesterday in Ealing: all went well including walk at Osterley. Had very good day today, including slap-up Italian meal at Pepe in K. Planning a major safari with daughter’s family and son next December, probably to Kenya. Also spending 2 weeks in Georgia with son in September (music festival/ raptor watching: perfection!!). Funds +1k by end of week: end-year report soon. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 29th: maximum 12C, minimum 8C, moderate SW, sunny afternoon, very mild. On 65 bus to Ealing to meet big sis for reunion. All went well, including walk at Osterley where had 22 Egyptian Goose, 4 Ring-necked Parakeet, 38 Mallard, 8 Tufted Duck, 4 Coot, 1 Moorhen, 1 Grey Heron, 5 Redwing. Total was 17 bird-types plus a Grey Squirrel.

December 28th: maximum 11C, minimum 7C, rain all day, moderate SW, very mild. Starting on Honey-buzzard results now with 2 more tables and commentary to follow. Feeling brighter today, looked after younger gd while older one went horse-riding; we got on very well! Went for walk with daughter at ttime, chatting about move to Dubai – exciting in many ways, but a lot of red tape and a few uncertainness still. 2moro going 2 c big sis in Ealing (by bus).

The overall results for the 2022 Honey-buzzard breeding season are given in Table 44. This year the survey was very much restricted to the core area of Devil’s Water and Tyne Valley W.




Area

No. sites

No. adults

No. nests

found

Observed Occupied (no. sites)

Breeding Category (no. sites)

Number young fledged

Display

Sit/

Rear

Fledge


Conf

Prob

Poss

Devil’s Water

6

10

0

6

2

6


6

0

0

9 (3x2, 3x1+)

Allen

4

7

0

3

1

0


0

1

3

0

Upper South Tyne

1

1

0

0

1

0


0

0

1

0

Lower South Tyne

2

3

0

2

0

0


0

1

1

0

Tipalt

0

0

0

0

0

0


0

0

0

0

Tyne W

8

11

0

7

2

8


8

0

0

13 (5x2 ,2x1+, 1x>0)

Tyne E

2

3

0

2

1

1


1

1

0

1 (1x>0)

Derwent

0

0

0

0

0

0


0

0

0

0

Total

23

35

0

20

7

15


15

3

5

23 (8x,2 5x1+, 2x>0)

Table 44: Results for the Honey-buzzard Breeding Season in SW Northumberland by area in 2022


Funds are +4k wtd; should have emphasised last week that the +16k at end of week was a net movement after paying out the 16k dividends to the family. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 27th: maximum 10C, minimum 5C, sunny all day. Made Kingston with varied transport: Uber from Welwyn to Welwyn Garden City, WGC to Finsbury Park by train, FP to Richmond by tube, R to Kingston by bus, over 2 hours door to door. Picked up some bug, barking cough and sleeping sickness but no temperature: slept 13 hours last night, 6 hours 30 min deep sleep, 1 hour 30 min REM; feeling a lot better. Son and I went for a long walk yesterday of 7 km, may have resulted unexpectedly in long sleep. Granddaughters very pleased to see me Had good time at son’s. Seeing him soon in North-east for Festival. Daughter and family go to Dubai end-March. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 26th: continued to record Red Kite: 3 at Welwyn S and 2 at Sherrrardspark Wood where also had a Common Buzzard. Moderate walk set me up for long sleep so very good.

December 25th: maximum 10C, minimum 4C, light SW, cloudy, few light showers. We had family reunion in White Horse, Welwyn, which went very well. Here’s piccie of yours truly with 2 granddaughters. Had Xmas dinner no.5 – is this the last? Had soup, turkey and tart with couple of rw and a welcoming ps! Did give out 16k as planned: well received! Son gave me 3 operas: Die fern and Das Liebesverbot by Wagner, early operas, and Meyerbeer’s Robert le Diadle, all well worth close study. After a walk to ponds, we all came back to son’s place after the lunch for present swapping and a cup of tea: what a contrast to last year! Had 3 Red Kite, 2 over Node Way Gardens and 1 calling from North Welwyn on walk at 15:00. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 24th: maximum 10C, minimum 5C, light SW, very sunny morning, cloudier later, few showers. Up very early for me at 07:00, drove to NCL Airport, dropped off car, Metro to NCL Central, Lumo NCL-SVG £38 in 2 hours 15 min (last train of day to London from NE/Scotland, very comfortable, once kicked someone out of my reserved seat!), taxi SVG-Welwyn £18. Tidied up diagrams and their descriptions for ANPA paper on way down. Had a Red Kite over A1(M) ½ way between Stevenage and Welwyn. Settled in well, went for a quick drink at R&C in evening, packed, very lively. Walked 7.5 km today. Son has sent off his saliva sample for autosomal DNA analysis by Ancestry; should be interesting to see whether he inherits more German strands from my late wife than my daughter (children do not necessarily inherit 50:50 from their parents). Tomorrow is big day! To the gorgeous one: have a gr8 day: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 23rd: maximum 5C, minimum 3C, light E, murky, steady, heavy rain late afternoon and evening! Gave out lots of bird foods in garden: had 16 bird-types around feeding area, including 1 Nuthatch, 12 Blue Tit, 4 Coal Tit, 2 Great Tit, 3 Tree Sparrow, 3 Blackbird. Had gr8 last drink of season with D/D at DoW4g4s: pleased to meet A there again: celebrating my birthday with meal there soon. Think travel arrangements resemble those for an African tour so not inexperienced in such uncertainties, though an African, once your friend, will stick by you, unlike our transport companies! To bed early by 24:00! Funds are +16k on week after some end of year write-downs. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 22nd: maximum 6C, minimum 5C, light W, dry, mainly cloudy. 08:32 sunrise (no change), 15:42 sunset (1 minute gain); we’re on our way back! Did visit Newburn Riverside Park from 13:30-15:10 for habitat survey on the square, including the Honey-buzzard nest site at .Ryton Willows, making this site no.6 to be done in Tyne Valley E. Analysis will take a little while with Google Earth. Did a bird count of course seeing 53 Pink-footed Goose (feeding on winter wheat) with 5 Greylag Goose, 5 Mute Swan (2 adult, 3 1w, flying low-down upstream), 1 Cormorant adult, in total of 19 types. Large numbers of Corvids: 35 Crow, 28 Jackdaw, 8 Magpie. For mammals had 10 estimated moles. Still thinking hard on ANPA paper and changed limit and colimit labelling in a number of diagrams. Switched contingency ticket with LNER from tomorrow until 13/2 (first class for a little extra) when go down to see Tannhäuser. Lumo had better run now! Made G4g4s with P/A/R for good final chat b4 break; L was showing off!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 21st: maximum 6C, minimum 3C, fresh SW, showery, a little cooler feel in the wind. 08:32 sunrise (1 minute lost), 15:41 sunset (1 minute lost, small rounding change perhaps). Solstice today: let’s celebrate: every day for the next 6 months is longer than the one before! Booked car parking at Newcastle Airport for break £76 and now just pray! Restored Holiday Extras (NCL park) and Loganair apps on my phone and displayed tickets. Have been through the spreadsheet of Honey-buzzard records: found 1 not added to BirdTrack and a couple of minor discrepancies with the web site and another spreadsheet on which I compile running totals but nothing serious. All rectified and can start producing final tables tomorrow. Might go to Newburn/Ryton tomorrow for Honey-buzzard habitat survey. Made QHC4s4l and QHL for some work on the paper; had an idea to improve the main topos diagram, by simplifying it with a canonical (archetypal) example; hoping to get some work done on my train journeys and while waiting around! Didn’t make G4g4t as B not out (scan) and felt I’d take a breather! Sent feedback form from KH: complimented them on last concert! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 20th: maximum 8C, minimum 4C, moderate SW, showery, a little cooler after yesterday’s heatwave! 08:31 sunrise (2 minutes lost), 15:42 sunset (1 minute gained). Solstice tomorrow, roughly coinciding (logically) with start of Hanukkah!! Completed habitat analysis for Eltringham Honey-buzzard, that’s site no.3 done for Tyne Valley W. Next up is Ryton Willows in Tyne Valley E, going to do it from Newburn on other side of the Tyne: the lowest in altitude and most urban site done to date. This will be site no.6 for the E area. Hope to get on with Honey-buzzard 2022 season results tomorrow morning and ANPA 2022 in QHL in afternoon after lunch there. Funds are in revival mood: +24k wtd, on bounce in commodity stocks. Becoming convinced that 2023 will be like 2022: good for commodity prices/mining & energy stocks and bad for tech and house builders as inflation proves stubborn with China reopening and interest rates stay relatively high. Of course the losing categories are already well down so not necessarily going to fall a lot further but may be stuck in a rut for a while. Have reduced tech holdings considerably in last 2 weeks, anticipating a further slide or stagnation. As Net Zero continues, we might have this trend for years! Am raising dividend for kids in 2022 to 4k each child and grandchild (from 3k in 2021): Xmas presents 16k! Went shopping today: bought bird seed and nuts £10, 2 presents for grandchildren £20, 16 1st class stamps £15. Have just about finished sending Xmas cards. Also took delivery of 250 kilos of ovoids £140 and 100 kilos of small doubles coal £68 from my coal merchants J&JC. Booked a contingency rail fare with LNER for Friday afternoon – can push this back to mid-February when down in London again if necessary. Still have Lumo ticket for Saturday! Continued with Mahler’s symphonies tonight, playing 3,4 (so listened to 1-4 +8 now). The last movement of 4 is beautiful: Das himmlische Leben: soprano singing about a child’s imagination of what heaven is like. Tempted to wish: but maybe best not to: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 19th: maximum 13C, minimum 4C, fresh SW, showery, so much milder. Didn’t make the shopping but did write 12 XMAS cards and post them. Xmas meal for R at B was good, turkey followed by tart, sat next to PJ and wife and NW and wife for sociable meal. Later made G4g4s where could see L again! Present were R/A/P for gr8 chat with A on. LNER have cancelled nearly all their trains for 24/12 so on Lumo now; think LNER should be censored for giving up so easily when strike starts at 18:00 that day. Had a joke at R from speaker, a rector: scene Bethlehem, a manger, a crying child; nothing to do with me says the innkeeper; nothing to do with me either, says Joseph! No meals 2moro so expecting to progress a few issues. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 18th: maximum 0C, minimum -1C, light E, dry, raw, classical day for emerging from a cold spell – feels colder with lack of sun than in the freezing patch. Evening passed with smooth thaw and up to 4C by now (01:35 19/12) with rain and no ice, mist or fog as forecast earlier. We gained a minute in the evening today, sunset 15:41, but still losing slightly more time in the morning (sunrise 08:29): still almost at shortest day (21/12 in 2022, winter solstice). From Honey-buzzard home page at http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/index.html:

18/12/22: Red Kite season summary: 40 sites occupied but only 16 juveniles known to fledge, a disappointing season productivity-wise. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandrk.html for further details.

18th December 2022: Updated Red Kite page with disappointing productivity results for SW Northumberland in 2022 (Population of the Red Kite in SW Northumberland). In overall results on Red Kite page: Coverage was variable from 2019-2022, always less than prior to 2018, and results fluctuated between 37 and 61 sites occupied. The only concern was poor apparent productivity in 2022 when just 16 juveniles were seen.

So now on to Honey-buzzard: have downloaded all records world-wide for 2022 into a spreadsheet from BirdTrack: 66 of them, 3 from Crete, 3 from Marciac (incomplete, not finished adding all July data from France), 3 from Chamonix, 57 from England (all Northumberland). So will start processing them tomorrow and give a higher priority to those late Marciac records. Reflections on Messiah last nite: really good production from VE but of course she has sung in the chorus so well qualified with the genre. Not sorry to not be there although I enjoyed the stream. I do prefer the dark side of music and indeed in the concert at KH, liked the carol In the Bleak Midwinter, one of my favourites. Made W4smallshop £20 and Sh4c4ll. Much later made G4g4s with R/P and S on, where some pretty merry lads, been there since World Cup final started at 15:00; good to meet L again. Would have preferred France to win but pleased for Messi and some of his Argentina mates. Laughed at this phallic symbol in the awards https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-cup/2022/12/18/emiliano-martinez-shocks-lewd-gesture-argentinas-world-cup-win/. Brought back memories of the romantic Piazzolla!! 2moro is some Xmas shopping, card writing, 4th Xmas meal with R @ B4m4s followed of course by G4g4s. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 17th: maximum 3C, minimum -2C, moderate SW, dry, mainly overcast, raw. Here are the Red Kite results for 2022, a disappointing year in productivity. Still waiting for the FoRKers. Next up is Honey-Buzzard. More details of the Red Kite breeding season for 2022 are available in Table 16:



Area

No. sites

No. adults

Breeding Category

No. Juveniles fledged

Post-breeding sites

Conf

Prob

Poss

Devil’s Water

8

10

2

4

2

3

0

Allen

2

3

0

1

1

0

0

Upper South Tyne

2

3

2

0

0

3

0

Tipalt

1

2

1

0

0

1

0

Lower South Tyne

2

2

0

1

1

0

0

Tyne W

11

15

4

2

5

4

0

Tyne E

3

3

0

1

2

0

0

Derwent

11

22

4

6

1

5

0

Total

40


60

13

15

12


16 (2x2, 12x1+)

0

Table 16: Breeding Data for Red Kite in SW Northumberland by area in 2022


This year, the west of the county reverted to its status of 2020 in coverage terms with just 5 sites found occupied in the Allen, Tipalt and upper South Tyne areas, compared to 15 in 2021 and 2 in 2020. The Devil’s Water and Tyne Valley W area received normal fairly intensive coverage with 19 sites occupied, compared to 19 in 2021 and 28 in 2020. My coverage of Tyne Valley E was poor with 3 sites found occupied, compared with 5 in 2021 and 10 in 2020. I did not visit Derwent at all, relying on N&TBC coverage. and Derwent. The total number of sites found to be occupied fell from 56 to 40 and the total number of adults found declined from 75 in 2021 to 60. The major reason for the decrease in numbers found is likely to be reduced coverage with NR away for long periods in April, July and August, in catch-up with relations post-Covid. Some emphasis on Black Kite sites also reduced the time spent in the field elsewhere in the study area. However, it did not appear to be a successful breeding season with the pair at my home site near Ordley failing early on and the species was inconspicuous in late summer and early autumn when family parties should be on the wing. So the sharp fall in number of juveniles raised at 16 compared to 44 in 2021 and 25 in 2020, may reflect a poor breeding season. The reason for the decline in productivity is unclear at the present time.


Movements were not noted this year. No mixed pairs with Black Kite were noted this year: in previous mixed pairs the Red Kite was replaced by a Black Kite giving only pure pairs of Black Kite in 2022 (see Black Kite in Northumberland). There is some suggestion that where they interface, the more aggressive Black Kite are pushing the Red Kite out into adjacent areas.


As in 2021 records were included from the bulletins of the Northumberland & Tyneside Bird Club from February to October 2022. These added 2 sites each to upper South Tyne and Devil’s Water. The main effect was on Derwent where all 11 sites came from the Bulletin. So 15 sites in all were added from the bulletins to the 25 sites that I found from my own observations. FoRK results are not yet in.


So quite busy today, completing this. Did watch the stream of Messiah – concert was well-attended with Level 2 open. Always good to see musicians close-up: noted cellist KT, who played at recent Festival warm-up and has also played at KH.

I noted that VE is chief producer of the streams, quite a challenge, but the streams are now very professional with timely focus on singer/player, and the chorus, who sang very well, got a lot of attention tonight. Hope to get out 2moro for a bit of a walk as weather warms slightly. Fixed TV aerial today after part arrived in post and watched the World Cup 3rd/4th place battle, narrowly won by Croatia over Morocco. Spent some time looking at new (for me) South American oil stocks. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!


December 16th: maximum 2C, minimum -2C, moderate SW, dry, becoming cloudier, raw. Xmas meal no.3 lasting 3 hours was had in Slaley with roast pheasant as my choice with a g and rw. Good company: my unn mates A/M and partners, 5 of us out. Much later made DoW4g4s with D/D for gr8 chat in very nice atmosphere; had a Brown Rat at Newton. Another dismal week for markets with own funds losing 18k but proving fairly resilient (loss 0.8%). When’s it all going to end; sentiment is very bad with tls (tax loss selling) aggravating the situation. Suspect we’ll see a bad start to 2023 followed by the start of a recovery, at least in commodities as China begins to recover from its disastrous zero Covid policy. Stocks on the wrong side of high energy prices may take longer to recover and unless we adapt the Net Zero objectives for reality can see some sectors (e.g. heavy industry) in terminal decline. I’ve built up a large position again in the Falklands embryonic oil industry. Think have found my great grandmother Sarah Dixon’s birth in 1842 in Stockport, will pursue for more details. Hope to complete Red Kite results tomorrow. Am planning to stream Messiah from S as no trains, usual road closed for gas leak and bad weather. I am concerned about the appalling public transport links to the S. In Germany I doubt the S would be granted a public entertainment licence in view of its lack of connection to any network. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!



December 15th: maximum 1C, minimum -8C, calm, brilliantly clear and sunny winter’s day, rime gone, dry, no snowfall yet, bitterly cold at midnight (end of day) -7.5C in external reading on car. A Brown Hare on the roadside at Ordley on way home. Again collected with buckets on Fore Street for Hexham Rotary from 13:00 to 14:00 in the open, footfall low, donations low, not very heartening. Dashed back for lunch at home b4 returning to QHL 4 work on ANPA while cleaner S sorted the house out; gave her £60 Xmas bonus. Booked 3 tickets for Wagner’s Tannhäuser at ROH for £201 + £3 donation; family very keen to take up my offer, It’s a brilliant opera with a stirring overture; one of the first bits of classical music I got to love after a performance by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra at Exeter Cathedral, which attended with father. Had good chat with A/R/P at G4g4s – all turning out in the cold. Cannot find marriage of Sarah Dixon (my paternal great-grandmother) to Enoch Friend in the civil records: most strange! Am continuing to collect circumstantial evidence. 2moro it’s chat with N/D over Skype at 10, R&C4m4l with M/B/A/A at Slaley at 12:30, DoW4g4s with D/D. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 14th: maximum -2C, minimum -6C, calm, brilliantly clear and sunny winter’s day, rime all over trees, hedges and grass, quite heavily on some tree branches, dry, no snowfall yet. Same as yesterday. Collected with buckets on Fore Street for Hexham Rotary from 13:00 to 14:00 in the open – it was so warm, had to strip off (irony!). Then W4bigshop at £60 followed by QHC4s4l where met A/A (seeing again Friday) and QHL 4 ANPA, b4 G4g4t with B and the gang; very friendly pub! Gave Big Issue sellers from Romania £15 between them – quite generous really – Xmas bonus, have 2 copies of the mag. Completed compiling Red Kite records from the N&TBC bulletins and am now going to bring everything together for the status in the study area this past breeding season. Also compiled some details of my Grandmother Bertha Friend’s ancestors. Her father Enoch Friend was born in a sleepy Devon village to a farming family moving into drapery and they look a bit like yokels (so appear most unlikely for a continental partner) but then found that Enoch spent 30 years as a boarder in north London (Census snapshots, maybe up there on trade) so that may well be where he became more worldly, meeting his wife Sarah Dixon, and may give a hint as to the relations my father had in north London. Asked son and big sis whether they want to come and see Wagner’s Tannhäuser at the ROH on 16/2; I’m going anyway! Might be the Sleeping Beauty there next!! 2moro it’s another stint in the freezer in 4St at same time with much later G4g4s. Hope tension sorted: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 13th: maximum -2C, minimum -6C, calm, brilliantly clear and sunny winter’s day, rime all over trees, hedges and grass, quite heavily on some tree branches, dry, no snowfall yet. Electricity supplies heavily stressed again, with high prices paid again for spot electricity. Gas is supplying c60% of electricity at the moment and c75% of all power (electricity supplies only c20% of all power: we are 81% dependent on fossil fuels for total power). Much hype around nuclear fusion today: yes it’s a great technique but it’s probably 20-50 years away as a proven engineering technology. Concert was fabulous: played with such vigour and intensity, particularly the Vivaldi winter and the Piazzolla: Enjoyed lunch before, washed down with a little rw. Indeed great experience all-round!! Will go to more. Added Red Kite records from bulletin for April-June 2022. Funds are unchanged on wtd: gentle rise in $ values counteracted by slight rise in £ against the $: bear market drags on but prepared to take some losses in return for being aboard near the bottom of the cycle. Had 4 Common Buzzard: 1 at Stagshaw, 1 at Bingfield, 2 at Throckrington. Thought someone was particularly inspired: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 12th: maximum -3C, minimum -5C, calm, freezing fog all day, dry, no snowfall yet; in Tyneside few cm snow on ground, slightly warmer, misty. Electricity reached £2250/MWh briefly today as sources so stretched with renewables solar and wind at miniscule levels; that's equivalent to £40k a year for an annual typical bill. Made R @ B4m4l with Rachel Penn, the speaker from the Woodland Trust; she used to be an environmental consultant; very keen on this organisation. Accepted by all that tree planting in the uplands, except along streams, affects waders adversely so falling out of favour; difficult to find planting land elsewhere; we’re short of land in this country. Went to TC in evening for National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation - not my usual dark genre – but was very funny with continuous action and did enjoy it; much larger audience than for my normal taste!! Left the ‘Shire in freezing fog but roads clear and made CAL via A1 as Ponteland Road (rat-run from Throckley - Callerton) still closed for gas mains repair. Came back via Walbottle and Throckley: fog all gone and roads well-gritted. Had a Barn Owl at Ordley at 00:30. Earlier compiled February and March records from N&TBC bulletins for Red Kite report. Stroll was ecstatic: she’s so gorgeous: lok2tgrf: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! 2moro looks good!!

December 11th: maximum 1C, minimum -3C, light W, cloudy, dry, slight thaw midday. Out in the field today, going to Eltringham for Honey-buzzard habitat visit, walked 5.8km in 2 hours from 13:00-15:00. Had 2 Common Buzzard adult calling and a Kestrel 1w in flight. Thrushes were plentiful, including 20 Blackbird, 17 Fieldfare, 16 Redwing, with 4 Jay, 6 Mallard, 5 Bullfinch. Had 6 Greylag Goose, 2 Cormorant adult and 5 mole at Merryshields GP. Total for birds on trip was 20 types overall. Added Henry R, Christopher R, William R, Robert R, as sons of Roger R (1628-1710). He had 8 sons in all, of which 7 lived to marry and no daughters; responsible for quite an increase in Rs in west Somerset, including my ancestors. Established on Ancestry Pamela B as my second cousin once removed on maternal side, linked through marriage of William Thomas May to Sarah Jane Dashper. This time the once removed refers to my maternal side breeding faster as opposed to the paternal side, where the generations are stretched out. Made G4g4s where good chat with R/P. Had 2 Brown Hare and a Barn Owl at Ordley at 23:30 on way home. Daughter’s off to Dubai 2moro for short trip, with granddaughters, prospecting on school and housing! 2moro it’s R @ B4m4l and thinking of TC again with stroll later: could well be NLCV as short! lok2tgrf: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 10th: maximum 0C, minimum -4C, calm, partly sunny and dry throughout, all-day frost on grass in shade. Had Xmas dinner at DoW with D/D – very good show put on for us: I had terrine, turkey and Xmas pudding – not too original, with a couple of g to wash it down. Think I’ve got at least 5 more such meals to go. Cost was £37 each including drinks and generous tip. Did some work on desktop: sorting out full list of Honey-buzzard sites in the study area, complete with grid references; getting Eltringham habitat map printed from Google Earth, ready for site visit; bringing all wildlife records on BirdTrack up to date; connecting John R, George R and Nicholas R, to father Roger R (1628-1710); reading again John Stevens PCC will made 1647, proven 1654 (involved with many Rs in Hillfarrance area of Somerset). Looking forward to seeing her again: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 9th: maximum 1C, minimum -3C, light W, sunny and dry throughout, all-day frost on grass in shade. Had good chat on Skype with N/D at 10 for 80 minutes: it’s coming up to 3 years without going out for them. Made T4m4l with M for good catch-up. Trip to London is complicated by the strikes; coming back now going to younger sister in Devon for 3 days, arriving by train at Honiton and coming back by air with Loganair from EXT-NCL after New Year. So 3 stays, with son, daughter and younger sister. Hope to see elder sister as well. Electricity today reached £750/MWh for a while, with masses of imports from our European friends! To think we rejected tidal energy, which is absolutely predictable, at £92/MWh as too expensive. In common with world markets, funds had a poor week at -16k; realisation that recession looms in 2023 sunk in this week but personally hope that China recovering from lockdown may counterbalance that for commodities. Average US retail investor is -30% ytd, according to Bloomberg. Sh14 should be brilliant: wish I were there: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 8th: maximum 0C, minimum -3C, light W, sunny and dry in morning, smattering of snow in afternoon, all-day frost on grass in shade. Price of electricity reached nearly a record at £640/MWh this evening (10 times the long-term rate) as wind started to drop. Our energy system is like something out of Alice in Wonderland but not sure they’ll be many laughs when the bills come in or it collapses altogether! Net Zero is a very dangerous cult, which is going to damage people’s well-being much more than the gentle rise in temperatures we’re experiencing. Saturday evening will be fun as the football match is on, the weather stays very cold and freezing fog moves in, as wind and sun disappear. Bit cold for survey work today, maybe Saturday. Made QHC for my tuna sandwich with salad, then did some work in QHL on ANPA; think I’m starting to understand eternal objects as atemporal ones, including sensory aspects; deadline extended to 1/2/2023 – thank goodness as not quite ready yet! Much later out to G4g4s with R/P 4 good chat; car recorded -2.5C as drove back. Keep hot: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 7th: maximum 1C, minimum -3C, light NW, sunny and dry, all-day frost on grass in shade. We had good lunch at Vercelli in HEX, 11 stalwarts of the G for 3 course lunch and plenty of rw plus a limoncello, cost £35 all in. That went on for over 2 hours of fun; quietly slipped away b4 the pub crawl started; not that keen on losing my marbles! Have sorted out the Norton relations after securing Evan’s will from the Probate Office. Jamie C who has also had an autosomal DNA test, and is reported as my second-third cousin from Ancestry’s analysis, is actually my second cousin once removed, meaning Ebenezer Rossiter is my gt-grandfather and is his gt-gt-grandfather as my lot have been slow in breeding! The interest is that there’s none of these German genes in his DNA so it’s Bertha Friend that is increasing the continental genes at grandparent level with my father 48% central/northern Europe from his assumed contribution to my DNA i.e. he was ½ continental and I’m a little over ¼ continental! Hoping to get out in the field 2moro down to Merryshields for Honey-buzzard survey, a popular walk for us when lived in Stocksfield, b4 going to QHC4s4l, QHL for work on ANPA paper and much later G4g4s. SW had a Red Kite at Viewley on way in at 13:00. Probably good for me having no TV while waiting for aerial adapter: can watch anyway on iPlayer and took out a box-set of Mahler symphonies (Rattle, CBSO) and played 2,3 - gr8 stuff! Hope it goes well 2moro: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 6th: maximum 4C, minimum -1C, light NW, some showers, cooler trend continuing. Sunset close to bottom at 15:42, just 2 minutes more to lose of light in next 8 days. Sunrise, at 08:16 today, is still getting later for a while, c20 minutes to lose of light by New Year. Had hair cut at 09:30 at JG with the lively Jd: didn’t ruffle it this time as came out and people actually complimented me on it! Made W4shop 4 cleaning products for cleaner’s use– £19. Concert by RNS in Hexham Abbey was very fitting for the setting with DS conducting well (as Portugal thrashed Switzerland 6-1): Maria played a difficult solo by Biber expertly; we then had, before the interval, Corelli’s XMAS Concerto, von Bingen O Beatia Infantia, Arvo Pärt Trisagion. The last went down very well. After the interval we had a Purcell Chacony and Bach’s Cantata 199, expertly sung by Bethany Horak-Hallett. Everything went smoothly; very good to see the packed audience; they’d thoughtfully put up screens with live action for blind spots in the Abbey. Completed the Honey-Buzzard habitat analysis for Wylam Horsley, first site to be done since May; next up is indeed Eltringham, on edge of Tyne Valley W. It’s good work for the recess, when they’re not here, may get the survey in the field done on Thursday. 2moro have meeting with my Globe mates in Italian restaurant for late lunch! Under a lot of pressure to become President Elect of Hexham R, thinking about it! Many R members at concert tonite! Funds are -5k on wtd; many worries on trends in US economy but better feelings on China for 2023. Relieved to see a hare on the roadside outside my house. Looking forward to next week: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 5th: maximum 5C, minimum 1C, moderate E, heavy bursts of rain in morning, drier later. Downloaded my Red Kite data for 2022, some 44 records for study area and started analysis; need to tie in the N&TBC bulletin data to give a more accurate total. Analysed habitat data for the tetrad containing the Honey-buzzard site at Wylam Horsley; not quite finished yet, have done ½ the woodland assignments and measurements. At least one more to do in this area: Eltringham/Merryshields with 2 more as possibilities. Made R @ B4m4s with talk on bird ringing by CE, former owner of Hexham Racecourse, He does have an unappealing hang-up over predators; nearly everything is a predator of sorts, after all Blue Tits savage caterpillars! Much later made G4g4s 4 good chat with R/P and bar-lass Alex on. Having hair-cut tomorrow morning at 09:30 and concert at Hexham Abbey in evening. Have sorted Kirkharle: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 4th: maximum 5C, minimum 4C, moderate E, heavy bursts of rain all day, pretty dismal. Did a lot of work on ANPA paper, tying in Rosen’s work, and on family tree, taking it right back on WT to a Roger R, born in 1587 in Hillfarrance, Somerset. Going to switch back to birds this week, compiling Red Kite returns for 2022 and resuming work on Honey-buzzard habitat survey. But keeping the ANPA going as close to finishing now. Had a Tawny Owl on the road towards Newbiggin again. Made W4bigshop £66 and WC4c4ll early-on and G4g4s with P/R and L much later: ecstatic atmosphere after England’s win. My TV aerial’s on the blink with clamp seemingly missing, ordered new adapter, and car key ring’s batteries are on the way out so ordered 2 more. 2moro it's R @ B4m4l and G4g4s. Next concerts are RNS at Hexham Abbey on Tuesday and 16 at S on Friday. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 3rd: maximum 5C, minimum 2C, light E, misty, some heavy showers. Has been a great week, back to earth today. Caught up with quite a lot of paperwork and domestic duties today. Sorting out family tree of Roger R (born 1678) in Wiveliscombe, another miller! Was he jolly though? Made DoW4g4s with D/D for good chat; we’ve got Xmas dinner there next Saturday. Applied for a concert and meal at Kirkharle. Had 2 Tawny Owl today in Ordley area, one calling at home, the other c1km down the road towards Hexham, plus a Kestrel 1w at Newbiggin. Walked 8.5km yesterday, today 1km! Bought more bird food yesterday, now it’s peanuts, sunflower seed and grain on offer, plenty of birds around. Had an unfortunate accident with a hare which got stuck in one of my gates and died; freed the body and placed it in the field; sad, especially if it’s the hare which has been taking up residence in my field. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 2nd: maximum 5C, minimum 2C, light E, misty, dry. Kept up the culture with trip to S for Hallé under Mark Elder. Very impressive concert: started with favourite composer Wagner and his Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde. This was played with some restraint, probably more appropriate for a concert setting. In the opera the Liebestod ‘Love in Death’ is the finale, as Isolde (soprano) imagines she is making love (very graphically in the music!), standing over the dead body of Tristan (tenor), in realisation of their frustrated passion. She then collapses and dies in what some critics have described as an act of suicide; some think the whole of the Liebestod is a suicide note. For the concert version, Elder’s approach was fitting. The first half concluded with some wild dances from Barber – bit surprised as normally think Barber is smooth but the percussion here was angry! The second half had one work, a suite of music from another of my favourite composers Tchaikovsky with Sleeping Beauty. Elder is keen on Tchaikovsky's ballet music saying in an introduction that he thought Tchaikovsky was very much in his element with ballet music as opposed to concertos and symphonies. It was very varied with some beautiful serene passages interspersed with wilder ones; AY excelled in a difficult flute passage. Very sociable, met lots of partners and V and stayed for a rw at end b4 catching last train. Funds finished week at +8k with gentle rise in stocks facing the headwind of a stronger £ which pushes down $ values in terms of £. Had early nite: thinking of the gorgeous one: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

December 1st: maximum 5C, minimum 4C, light NW, misty, very dull. Got a monthly star award from WikiTree: November 2022 Club 100 Badge (for 100 contributions to the genealogical data). Today added Evelyn Mary Norton as sister of Evan Norton. Ought to add that Evan was the family star: he became Sir Evan Augustus Norton, for his service to Birmingham Hospitals. He died in 1967, leaving an estate of £85k. My investing career actually started when I was 16 by swapping £50 in investment bonds for some mining shares. My father died intestate (no will) so received £750 from his estate under the rules, which I also invested at age 18. By time I got married at age 28, this had grown to 5k (enough then to buy a house) with the major winner being platinum mining shares, as the metal was selected for catalytic converters in cars: had anticipated this from my chemistry studies. This money went into our new house in Haltwhistle as deposit and improvements, but investing days were over: my partner had no wish to participate in the boom and bust trails of the 1970s and anyway we concentrated on property (nesting instincts!). Did do some work in QHL in afternoon and made QHC4s4ll. Then to CAL for Metro to NCL, where enjoyed fantastic concert with Weinberg’s Jewish Songs for soprano and piano trio the highlight. The opening concert promises to be really something as it’s packed with Weinberg’s work. Enjoyed everything in the concert: the artists, the pieces, the enthusiastic audience, the refreshments plus a bonus of a bottle of ps, which carried on the Metro like the best of winos!! Got back in time for G4g4s where met the gang of P/R/A for short chat. 2moro it’s the Hallé at S playing some heady erotic Wagner in the first half and Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty in the second half; hope to meet flautist AY afterwards. She looked and acted gr8 today: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 30th: maximum 4C, minimum 0C, light W, mist/fog everywhere, very chilly with lack of solar radiation. After lovely sleep enjoyed leisurely breakfast until 10, then 11:23 train NCL- HEX where to QHL for some work on ANPA paper b4 home to light fire and then out to G4g4nba (Ncl brown, as run out of g in the busy football matches!), where pleased 2 c L. Carried on ANPA work in evening; it’s getting quite polished but have not finished a couple of critical sections on feeling and philosophical perceptions. Completed adding George R’s immediate family 1667 to WikiTree; next up is Evan Norton’s family, son of William Norton and Rose Rossiter (my paternal grandfather’s twin sister); the Nortons have descendants in the Ancestry DNA close relations so keen to establish exact relationship. When my father drowned, we had little money and Evan set-up covenants to my mother and younger sister to help out; in the 1960s he was a millionaire solicitor. But with a keen interest in finance and property (and a stockbroker’s account aged 18) I was already plotting to revive our fortunes. Evan is first cousin to my father and therefore second cousin to me but no sign of the German genes pre-Bertha Friend! 2moro it’s into L&P for a good-looking concert in evening, more Weinberg! Think I shall be coming in by car as there’s an enormous gap now between 20:25 and 22:53 in evening train service back to Hexham. Good rise on NASDAQ today on signs future US interest rate rises will be smaller. Had 2 1w Kestrel at Widehaugh. lok2tgrf: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 29th: maximum 5C, minimum 3C, light S, fog all day in ‘Shire, bit clearer in NCL. Nite out on the toon: staying at L, like this place, smart but unpretentious, made TC 2 c The Menu, a really weird dark comedy involving a group of well-to-do but tainted visitors to a magnificent dinner with various dark deeds eventually leading to the whole place going up in flames. Liked Ralph Fiennes as the all-powerful chef and Anya Taylor-Joy as the sexy innocent dragged into the mad evening but who eventually escapes! Enjoyed it! Wanderings were very satisfying: she’s so amazing!! Got Uber taxi back to hotel. Funds +6k wtd on resource stocks doing well. xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Leisurely breakfast and return home 2moro with G4g4t.

November 28th: maximum 7C, minimum 0C, light W, some sunshine, dry, frost by evening. A productive day, creating full-page topos diagram for ANPA paper, which is nearing completion of first draft, which is just as well as should be submitted in early December! Made Rotary at 18:15 at B4m4s, pleased to see L there; not good attendance, don’t think members like dark evenings but I’m a creature of the nite! Talk was on Humshaugh Net Zero: how a village shows the world how to decarbonise! Later made G4g4s 4 good end to day with A/R/P. Ancestry has confirmed Vera Friend’s daughter Vivienne Kennedy as my second cousin through trees and autosomal DNA. I have Germany/Sweden/Denmark (30%) almost equal to her Jewish Peoples of Europe/Norway (29%) , which could be a labelling problem, as Ashkenazi Jews typically have autosomal DNA close to that of central European countries. My father has inferred 48% Germany/Sweden and 52% England, suggesting my paternal grandmother was close to 100% continental. When my father was at Imperial College in London as an undergraduate c1920, he used to be pampered by relatives in Golders Green and we did visit them once as a family in the 1950s but I cannot remember their names. 2moro going to TC for some choice, followed by stroll and JI (now L) hotel again near Centre of Life!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 27th: maximum 10C, minimum 3C, light S, some sunshine, dry, mild. Highlight of day was Angela Hewitt on the piano at S in afternoon playing Bach The Well-Tempered Clavier Book II, Nos. 5 – 8; Mozart Sonata for Piano No. 8 in A minor; Mozart Sonata for Piano No. 9 in D major; Chopin Nocturnes in B & E, Op. 62 Nos. 1 & 2; Chopin Scherzo No. 2 in B flat minor, Op.31. Very polished performance in the Bach but additionally inspired in the Chopin; love Chopin’s piano music and she handled the rubato so creatively! Walked across the High-level Bridge there and back for the second time in 3 days – good exercise. Made G4g4s with R/D/B/P and good chat with L in action. Going to the cinema at TC on Tuesday to broaden my experience! 2moro it’s R and G in the evening. Did some work on the ANPA paper on the slow Sunday trains today on my Android ‘phone, using Notepad, polishing stuff written so far. Failed on Ebay in bidding for a Jersey Ag trefid spoon, ran into heavy bids by presumably Jersey collectors; good to stretch them a bit and use up their funds! Going to Tsinandali Festival in Georgia with son in September; it’s a festival with the theme east meets west so very appealing; will go off on my own either before or after it to Batumi for raptor watching. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 26th: maximum 10C, minimum 8C, moderate to fresh SW, sunny afternoon, cloud and rain later, mild. Relaxing day, in between 2 concerts, going to piano recital tomorrow. Chatted to son from 17:00-18:00 on FB video, and met D/D at DoW4g4s and good crack. Identified Vera Friend (1914-2011) as daughter of Walter Friend and Esther Cutley; Walter is brother to my grandmother Bertha Friend. We have the autosomal DNA for Vivienne Kennedy who is descended from Vera Friend; assuming she’s daughter of Vera then Vivienne is my 2nd cousin (common great grandparent). So Ancestry’s prediction of us as 2nd-3rd cousins looks to be accurate with Enoch and Sarah Friend as our common great grandparents. Funds finished last week +8k with rise in £ and weak oil price and tech stocks restricting gains but markets seem to be going in the right direction! Bought another Exeter Ag spoon c1675 from Ebay. Delighted to hear from someone, including that tour went well : xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 25th: maximum 9C, minimum 7C, light SW, sunny, dry, milder. Made rehearsal and concert at S with RNS and TZ conducting. Marvellous day out, better food today in the partner buffet and met James, new manager of RNS. Good social with L/S/M and others; think pp are gelling well, not being too cliquey. TZ has marvellous empathy with orchestra; he doesn’t even have to tell them what he wants improving; they just play the section again knowing what’s needed! Music was Elgar’s Serenade for Strings, played exquisitely, Walton’s Viola Concerto, played dynamically by TZ’s partner RK, and Vaughan-Williams’ London Symphony, potentially a heavy blurred piece but came over very clearly, full of contrasts, with a few starring solo pieces by MG and KH. Met MG/IB and others in bar later for gr8 chat!! Back on last train, mercifully still running b4 yet another strike. Family DNA is very perplexing with mine and daughter’s results difficult to reconcile with others. The DNA suggests that I’m continental Europe to a significant degree on the paternal side but this cannot come directly from my male side who are all Devon/Somerset. The infiltration must come from the female side of a marriage. By looking at my cousins, including remote ones, the infiltration of continental genes has to come very recently through my grandmother Bertha Friend, daughter of Enoch and Sarah (Dixon) Friend, baptists, who married my grandfather, George Rossiter, jeweller, also a baptist, in 1899. The ethnicity of a second cousin in the Friend connection is ¼ Jewish Peoples of Europe. Will investigate further. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 24th: maximum 9C, minimum 5C, light SE, cloudy, few showers, slightly milder. Main event of day was funeral of Philip Latham at west Newcastle Crematorium at 11:15, driving there. It was very well attended, chapel was full; he had many interests including improving the lot of refugees (English for All charity https://www.englishforall.uk/ with Philip’s piccie on left, to which gave £20 in closing collection, already give them £10 a month), bee-keeping, walking (we used to go to Scotland for Munro (peaks over 3000 feet asl) bagging), Liberals, education (was a school-teacher, retiring early), drama, plus Quakerism. The service was held in Quaker tradition with no formal service, just silence punctuated from time-to-time by people’s tributes. We came back to Riding Mill village hall for the wake (no alcohol!). His two daughters were very gratified by the large turnout and all a bit tearful but nice to re-acquaint with some old friends, not seen for a while, particularly Martin Pugh, a history professor from Newcastle Uni and wife Fran who live in Slaley. N/D didn’t go in spite of our having all drunk together on Friday night at Welly in Riding Mill for 35 odd years: still sheltering from Covid! Did get my g later-on at G4g4s with R/P/A and a good chat! 2moro chatting to N/D on Skype, followed by rehearsal and concert at S with RNS and return of TZ! Not long to return of the fancied one: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 23rd: maximum 7C, minimum 0C, light SE, few showers, weak sunshine, frost on car early-on. Back to earth today with QHL 4 work on ANPA 2022, QHC4m4ll and G4g4t with B who’s come through unscathed after latest immune therapy. We had good chat! Continuing work on WikiTree added George R 1667-1727 miller of Wiveliscombe, Somerset, Margaret R’s grandfather, and in my direct line through her. 2moro going to Philip’s funeral in west Newcastle with wake afterwards in Riding Mill. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Updated home page with entries:

22nd November 2022: Updated Goshawk page, a perplexing season, for SW Northumberland in 2022 (Population of the Goshawk in SW Northumberland).

22/11/22: Goshawk season summary: 9 sites occupied in spring, no records after 15/6, no young known to be raised, a perplexing season. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandgos.html for further details.

November 22nd: maximum 7C, minimum 0C, light NE, few showers, weak sunshine, frost on car early-on. Made concert at lunchtime at the premier university in the NE – brilliant, marvellous Weinberg with pizzicato and passion! Son has confirmed attendance for most of Festival. Made CT (Coffee Trader) before and after concert 4c and 4s: my favourite cafe: same initials as a certain mathematical theory. Daughter and elder granddaughter have had their autosomal DNA test results: daughter has ethnic markers all the way from Russia and eastern Europe through Germany to the UK, reflecting her maternal grandfather being brought up in Breslau, Silesia (now Wroclaw, Poland). Granddaughter’s DNA is very much as expected: 47% Iran, 28% England and North Western Europe, 20% Germanic Europe, so roughly ½ Iran, ¼ England, ¼ Germany. Ancestry confirms daughter has 50% of her genes from me and granddaughter 25%. Scandinavia seems to figure too highly in both my daughter’s and my analysis, maybe attributable to Germany, certainly in her case. These techniques are still in a development phase. Would be good for my son to get a kit. Funds -4k wtd. Trust still in one piece: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

In discussion with Whitehead conference, in Munich next July, chair of my section said:

Dear Nick Rossiter, Thank you for your reply. 

I am very saddened to learn from you about the death of Michael Heather. It is a great loss for all of us. I will remember him with a good feeling, especially for his hard work for the realization of new ideas till the end of his life. 

Thank you for agreeing to participate in the section of "Whitehead, Mathematics and Physics". I shall expect your abstract. Your suggestion for a presentation is very interesting and fruitful. 

Best wishes,  Vesselin Petrov

Back in QHL tomorrow!

November 21st: maximum 5C, minimum -2C, light NE, dry with sunny spells, frost early-on. Gr8 day: meal with the gorgeous lively one at KK4m4d: lovely occasion!! Nearer home made R @ B4m4l and G4g4s so pretty hedonistic day!! Good news:

Northumbria University, Newcastle, has today been named University of the Year 2022 in the prestigious Times Higher Education (THE) Awards. The THE Awards are widely recognised as the 'Oscars of higher education'. The impressive win recognises exceptional performance, as well as bold, imaginative and innovative initiatives that have advanced a Higher Education institution’s reputation during the academic year 2020/21. It marks Northumbria’s remarkable transformation to become the UK’s first research-intensive modern university. The strategy, which began in 2008, embedded quality research at the centre of everything that the University does, alongside a clear social mobility mission, and alignment to business and the demands of the regional and local economy. This success was borne out in the Research Excellence Framework (REF), which is a measure of the quality and strength of research across UK universities. In the REF 2021 results, Northumbria recorded the biggest rise in research power of any UK university for the second time, moving up 27 places to 23rd having previously risen to 50th in 2014, from 80th in 2008. https://newsroom.northumbria.ac.uk/pressreleases/northumbria-named-as-uks-best-university-3218399

Obviously benefiting from the ground work in 2002-2010 by yours truly!! Following last Friday’s relative complacency over North Sea oil bonds, today sold the lot for a bit under par as found out that interest payments are subject to the windfall tax: This government is going insane. Visiting unn 2moro, to building where used to meet Mike each lunchtime as part of our collaborative work. That’s sad but visit has a very positive dimension. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 20th: maximum 7C, minimum 0C, light S, dry with sunny spells, frost late-on. Completed addition to WikiTree of George Rossiter (1709-c1778) deals as a miller in Tiverton and added details of the marriage of his daughter Margaret Rossiter (1752-1783) to John Rossiter (1755-1842, also a miller in Tiverton); this isn’t a first cousin marriage (common grandparents), but may be a fourth cousin on John’s side and a third cousin on Margaret’s side on latest Wiveliscombe, Somerset, trees, which are inputting now into WikiTree. Keep it in the family! Went for walk around Sele by Tyne from 13:00-15:00 with break later at Sh4c4ll – very pleasant!! On walk had a Little Egret on the Tyne 1  2, in total of 16 bird-types. Made G4g4s with R/D/B/P 4 gr8 crack! 2moro looks good!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Reviewed Goshawk update written yesterday and publish today without change:

More details of the Goshawk breeding season for 2022 are available in Table 16.


Area

No. sites

No. adults

Breeding Category

Juveniles

Conf

Prob

Poss


Local-fledge

Also seen

Devil’s Water

2

3

0

1

1

0

0

Allen

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

Upper South Tyne

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Lower South Tyne

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

Tyne W

1

1

0

1

0

0

0

Tyne E

2

2

0

0

2

0

0

Derwent

2

2

0

2

0

0

0

Total

9

10

0

4

5

0

0

Table 16: Breeding Data for Goshawk in SW Northumberland by area in 2022


A perplexing year for Goshawk with a good start to the year with 9 sites occupied in spring and no records at all after 15/6 when one seen in Dipton Wood. Probable records came from Slaley Forest (pair displaying on 7/2) and Hexham (female displaying on 21/3) with possible records from Cupola Bridge, Wylam, Stublick, Hyons Wood and Dipton Wood from 26/1 to 15/6. The Bulletins of the Northumberland & Tyneside Bird Club were searched from January-September 2022: a site in Hexham was confirmed as probable with multiple sightings in March and two soaring females were seen at Derwent Reservoir on 26/3. Two birds were noted moving N in March: at Derwent Reservoir on 22/3 and Hexham on 7/3 raising the possibility that some of these birds in the study area early in the season are over-wintering and will move N to breed. But it is not clear they were migrating as the 2 sites were both still occupied later in the month. These records from the Bulletin are included in the totals above. The Goshawk does apparently retain a tenuous hold in the study area but its status is uncertain. It is not clear if the secrecy of the birds in summer is masking productivity or if the birds are failing because of stresses such as persecution. The abundance of Woodpigeon in the study area makes it unlikely they would suffer from food shortages.


November 19th: maximum 6C, minimum 4C, light SE, dry with a few bright intervals, cooler. Quite a lot of birds around garden, 20 types, including 6 Mistle Thrush and 15 Redwing, plus a Grey Squirrel and c6 wasps still on flowering ivy. Had a Kestrel yesterday hunting to N of Letah Wood. Got BirdTrack records up to date for all of November, just ½ of French trip to Marciac to add some time. Did draft Goshawk account for 2022, will publish tomorrow. Added some more info on O&G to yesterday finance view. On WikiTree added more info on Geo R miller of Tiverton and his 7 children. Completed Festival web updates on actors. So active day on the desktop. Did speak to son for an hour on FB video: good to keep in touch. Must get out for a walk tomorrow. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Wrapping up Hobby summary for 2022. Here’s entries on home page:

17th November 2022: Updated Hobby page with disappointing results for SW Northumberland in 2022 (Population of the Hobby in SW Northumberland).

17/11/22: Hobby season summary: 3 sites occupied, 4 adults seen, no confirmed breeding. There is a marked decline:10+ sites occupied annually from 2001-2017 and 3-9 sites from 2018-2022, albeit with less coverage in latter period. See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandhobby.html for further details.

November 18th: maximum 8C, minimum 6C, light W, rain finally ended mid-morning, then cool with bright intervals. Ag spoon arrived, pleased with it; made QHC4m4ll and QHL to work on ANPA paper completing Category of the Ultimate and moving onto feeling, leading into emotion. Later made DoW4g4s with D/D 4 good chat. Funds are 13k down on week, after taking 6k write-down of WAS1 and 1.5k withdrawals, largely for Devon trip; think we’re still bumping along the bottom and am positioning for 2023 when expect to see some recovery in stocks, sensitive to interest rates, such as tech and housebuilders. Relieved that got out of all North Sea oil equities in the last few weeks: the extra taxes levied (75% total before up to 30% investment allowances, now running up to 2028, hardly a narrow window) mean there’s just the prospect of steady decline now; do retain some bonds – reviewing their risks now. They will not raise anything like the amounts in tax that they claim. See for instance: KPMG responds to the Energy Profits Levy https://home.kpmg/uk/en/home/media/press-releases/2022/11/budget-2022-energy-profits-levy.html. 2moro hope to do Goshawk account for 2022 and get back to habitat survey for Honey-buzzard. Had 2 mammals on the road today: a Roe Deer at Loughbrow at 17:00 (stopped immediately saw it!) and a Badger at Letah Wood at 23:00. Feeding birds now on seed as well as nuts; had Nuthatch on nuts. Next week will be busier! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 17th: maximum 8C, minimum 7C, light SE, heavy rain all day, much surface water, cooling trend. Did complete the Hobby account for 2022 as below: decline is evident! Had good chat with M/B at T4m4l and with P/A/R at G4g4s. Received invite to talk to International Whitehead Conference next year in Munich, Germany, 26-29 July 2023, organisers Vesselin Petrov and Joachim Klose, section ‘Whitehead, Mathematics and Physics’. Pleased at that, can build on current ANPA paper and there will be another ANPA meeting in August 2023 to consolidate. Will certainly accept! Wonder if they know sad fate of my colleague. Gr8 occasion: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

More details of the Hobby breeding season for 2022 are available in Table 17:

.


Area

No. sites

No. adults

Breeding Category

Juveniles

Conf

Prob

Poss


Local-fledge

Also seen

Devil’s Water

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Allen

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

Tipalt

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Upper South Tyne

1

2

0

1

0

0

0

Lower South Tyne

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Tyne W

1

1

0

1

0

0

0

Tyne E

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Derwent

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

3

4

0

2

1

0

0

Table 17: Breeding Data for Hobby in SW Northumberland by area in 2022


My coverage was very low in the west of the study area, favoured by this species, and this season was largely concentrated on Devil’s Water and Tyne Valley W. Just one observation was made in this area in the whole breeding season: a female displaying at Bywell on 10/6. A search made in the Bulletin of the Northumberland & Tyneside Bird Club (April-September 2022) added 2 sites in the west with in July “a confidential site in the SW provided regular sightings of territorial behaviour with two driving off a Buzzard on 13th and one seen mobbing a Red Kite on 9th. On 15th individuals were noted three times in a two-hour period during which both Buzzard and Raven were mobbed (SJH)” and in August “an individual was at Ridley Common on 23rd (AJN)”. The first site appears from other context to be the County’s best established site at Towsbank in Upper South Tyne and the second is adjacent to the Staward Valley in the Allen. The decline appears to be real, despite lower coverage, as 3 sites (1 this year) had been occupied in Tyne Valley W the previous year. The long-term trend is also clearly down with 10+ sites occupied annually from 2001-2017 and 3-9 sites from 2018-2022, albeit with less coverage in latter period. A search of BirdGuides provided a significant number of records from coastal areas throughout the season but none in the study area.


The RBBP report for 2018 https://rbbp.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/rbbp-report-2018.pdf is interesting: “289–765 pairs. Clements et al. (2016) suggested that the UK Hobby population may be as high as 3,000 pairs, with the difficulty of detecting breeding sites meaning that it is widely underrecorded. There are, however, signs of a decline in the population over the last few years, both in RBBP totals and in the BTO/JNCC/RSPB UK Breeding Bird Survey, which reported a statistically significant decrease of 24% between 2008 and 2018 (Harris et al. 2020). Every county in northern England and Scotland reported small increases from the 2017 figures, however, suggesting that the northward expansion of the species’ range is continuing.” In 2019 https://rbbp.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/rbbp-report-2019.pdf the position was complicated with the comment: “267–678 pairs. Estimates provided by county bird recorders suggest that the UK population is around double the number of records submitted, although there is evidence to suggest it could be higher still (Clements et al. 2016).” The map of Hobby records in BirdGuides for 2022 mainly shows records from northern Britain and shows that the species wanders extensively with a concentration in NE England; most records in southern Britain are not included as BirdGuides is concerned with local or national rarities.


November 16th: maximum 8C, minimum 6C, light SE, sunny morning but sun is very weak now at 6 weeks to solstice, afternoons are disappearing with sunset 16:04, cooling trend. Did plenty of work on ANPA paper at QH Library, designing and populating table summarising Categories of Existence; will comment on table’s findings tomorrow. Made G4g4t where gr8 to meet B again, who’s been struggling with his immune therapy treatment. Rival bid for Coventry Stadium by nice local lads (commodity traders, no less) https://www.theguardian.com/football/2022/nov/16/coventry-sale-agreed-that-would-leave-club-free-of-debt threatens to derail Ashley’s attempts to get a cheap deal on the CBS Arena, which is bondholder security. Bought a nice old Ag spoon on Ebay – Charles II, Exeter c1676, maker MW, only bidder, waiting until last few minutes. Don’t think it’s a steal but like it! 2moro it’s T4m4l with M and G4g4s with the gang. Hope to do Hobby 2022 season – worst for years in study area. Such satisfaction with the most gorgeous one: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 15th: maximum 10C, minimum 4C, moderate SE, heavy rain all day, dry evening, cooling trend. Had some coal delivered: 250kg of ovoids (smokeless) and 150kg of doubles (domestic coal). Latter is soon to be banned by government decree and is scarce already, costing £34 for 50kg; ovoids remain competitive at £28 for 50kg. Coal depot said that domestic coal will soon be unavailable, ahead of the ban on sale next May; price hike might suggest some are stockpiling before the ban; I can just use ovoids though fire lighting may be a bit slower so not planning on building up a cache. Main event of day was visit to QH in evening to see Pelléas Ensemble with flute, harp and viola. They were very talented and inventive musicians playing Debussy, Prelude à l'Après-midi d'un Faune; Rebecca Clarke, arr. Tunnicliffe - Four Songs; Tchaikovsky - Selections from Swan Lake; Dowland, arr. Tunnicliffe - In Darkness Let me Dwell / If my Complaints Could Passions Move; Purcell , arr. Tunnicliffe - Fantasia upon One Note; Ethel Smyth - Variations on Bonny Sweet Robin; Jolivet - Petite Suite. Particularly liked the old English arrangements of Dowland and Purcell. Luba Tunnicliffe, the clever arranger of some of the pieces, played the viola in the Ensemble. So that was a good evening, met L in bar and afterwards. Made B4rw4s 4 nitecap! Completed section on propositions in ANPA paper and now move on to summary of the 8 categories of existence before getting on to feelings to complete the paper! Funds are +7k on wtd after 6k write-off on Wasps bond as troubles continue to mount at the rugby club. Shall never invest in sports-related issues again, far removed from objective finance issues; may have to write a bit more off if Ashley gets his way in the High Court on Thursday morning. But otherwise tech issues are beginning to recover and mines are looking good on China recovery possibilities and shortage of electrification metals for net zero. Looking forward to a week from today: mounting excitement: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 14th: maximum 11C, minimum 7C, light SE, sunny morning, misty afternoon. With rain forecast tomorrow closed down outdoor painting: it’s been a great improvement on the back door. Made R @ B4m4l, paid for 30 large Xmas cards for £30, getting next week. Walked around Sele, seeing 16 Chaffinch and a Grey Squirrel, with a few wasps around flowering ivy. A quiet day after weekend’s exertions on Black Kite report. Made G4g4s with R/A 4 good crack. Gr8 end to day!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Here’s entries on home page:

14th November 2022: Updated Black Kite page with breeding and migration data for SW Northumberland in 2022: rapid colonisation in progress (Black Kite in Northumberland)

14/11/22: Black Kite season summary: 7 sites occupied, 12 adults seen, all pure pairs, all sites successful, 11+ young raised (4x2, 3x1+). See http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandbk.html for further details.

November 13th: maximum 13C, minimum 8C, light E, sunny, another beautiful day! Completed painting the back door with a gloss coat; may touch it up tomorrow a bit more if conditions remain good. Had a very good day tidying up at home: clearing some old cardboard boxes out of shed to bottom of far hedge, putting the new wood into the shed to dry, trimming branches in orchard to permit hedge trimming, cutting out invasive blackthorn from field. Did keep an eye on my flowering ivy by road: literally hundreds of black flies, a few hover flies, c20 wasps; every time a vehicle came past a cloud of insects lifted for a few seconds, very impressive. In day had a Chiffchaff calling in garden, 40 Greylag Geese high up moving W, 4 local Canada Goose, 2 Bullfinch, plus a Brown Hare, flushed from my field where it is living now, a Mole and a Red Kite floating over area to S, their new territory after this year’s failure at Blackhall. Last night had a Tawny Owl calling at Ordley at 23:15. Today 2 walkers said how they always liked this part of the walk as there was so much wildlife around: isn’t that nice! Not out tonite, all of mates are away. 2moro it is the G in the evening and R @ B4m4l where collecting the lunch money on the PoS machine. Best of all was completing the Black Kite report (full details including piccies at http://nickrossiter.org.uk/hbweb/northumberlandbk.html):

More details of the Black Kite breeding season for 2022 are available in Table 2.3:





Area

No. sites

No. adult Black Kite

No. adult assoc-iating Red Kite

No. pure Black Kite juvenile

No. hybrid Black Kite x Red Kite juvenile

Breeding Category

No. Juv-eniles fledged

Post-breeding sites

Conf

Prob

Poss

Devil’s Water

1

1

0

1

0

1

0

0

1

1

Allen

1

2

0

1

0

1

0

0

1

0

Upper South Tyne

1

1

0

2

0

1

0

0

2

0

Lower South Tyne

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Tyne Valley W

3

6

0

5

0

3

0

0

5

0

Tyne Valley E

1

2

0

2

0

1

0

0

2

0

Derwent

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total

7

12

0

11

0

7

0

0

11+ (4x2, 3x1+)

1


Table 2.3: Breeding Data for Black Kite in SW Northumberland by area in 2022


Early days but the Black Kite colonisation is now looking more secure with an increase in population and the two Red Kite individuals involved in mixed pairs in 2021 both being replaced by Black Kite. So seven pure Black Kite pairs, with 12 adults seen, bred this year, all being successful, raising at least 11 young, in 4 broods of 2 and 3 broods of 1+. The replacement of the Red Kite suggests that there is not a shortage of Black Kite, available in the area, to form new pairings. The two sites, where only one adult was seen, were both picked up towards the fledging part of the season. The pairs are well scattered with one main concentration of 4 pairs in Tyne Valley W and the immediately adjoining area of the Devil’s Water. This area is 11.5km linear, totalling 35 sq km. Both localities where birds were first picked up at the end of the 2021 season, too late to confirm breeding, were occupied this year by breeding pairs. Outlier pairs at Sinderhope (300m asl) and Haltwhistle suggest the species is adaptable in its choice of habitat. It is possible that, although superficially now a pure population, that one or two birds are impure containing a residue of Red Kite genes from the earlier hybrid pairs. The Sinderhope pair has been taken as a pure pair this year because only single Black Kite were seen well there this year but an early-season sighting there was initially thought to involve a Red Kite. The Prudhoe pair was a definite move to a pure pair as both birds were seen well in display. It might still be expected that the occasional mixed pairing will occur, particularly in new sites or at old sites if a vacancy occurs. There was one sighting in a new territory at the end of the season on 3/9 of a juvenile slowly moving SW at Ordley in Devil’s Water, my home area. Hopefully this site will be colonised next season. The species likes to nest near main roads: 5 are near the A69, the main road from Newcastle to Carlisle via Hexham. The sites at Prudhoe and Sinderhope are set away from the A69; the former is habitat-rich for raptors; the latter is in a major game-rearing area where rabbit numbers are high, probably because their mammalian predators are in low numbers. Birds arrived on site in May with first at Styford on 5/5 and two displaying at Prudhoe on 10/5. The first juvenile was seen on 26/7 at Prudhoe with fledging at other sites in the next week. The last birds in breeding sites were seen on 29/8 (2 birds, adult, juvenile, Dilston), 30/8 (1 bird, unaged, Styford) and 2/9 (1 bird, juvenile, Hexham NE). The last sighting was on 3/9 with a juvenile moving slowly SW over Ordley.

Next up are Hobby (just one record in 2022), Goshawk (brief) and resumption of Honey-buzzard habitat survey, resuming with partially completed Wylam Horsley. Bought stream for RNS and watched Tchaikovsky VC and Bartók’s dances again. Keeping busy: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!



November 12th: maximum 13C, minimum 7C, light S, sunny, beautiful day! Did some outdoors painting, sanding down back door and giving it a coat of primer: unexpected opportunity. Met D/D at DoW4g4s and good chat plus six bags of wood from a birch tree they’ve cut down in their garden, for my stove. Working hard on Black Kite records for 2022. Added some actors to the Festival pages!!

November 11th: maximum 14C, minimum 7C, SW gale, sunny, clear air turbulence! Very interesting day! RNS concert had effervescent female conductor Nil Venditti, coming into her own in the dances in part 2, where we had Bartók’s Romanian Dances. Fazil Say’s Symphonic Dances and Brahms’ Hungarian Dances 1, 6 and 10. The Bartók was my favourite and the conductor had a poll (by voice) of what we’d like as an encore! Winner was indeed the Bartók. Fazil Say had produced some very stirring Turkish dances with massive percussion. Highlight of the concert was Tchaikovsky VC, played brilliantly by Norwegian Eldbjørg Hemsing violin; it appears to be such a difficult piece but it is inherently very romantic, not just an exercise in virtuosity. Very keen on Tchaikovsky; would have been annoyed if had gone to last Saturday’s concert instead of Orpheus as the scheduled Tchaikovsky PC 1 was replaced by a Mozart PC as the soloist claimed an injury; says something about the level of virtuosity required! So good concert tonite but attendances are not good; level 1 looks fairly full but level 2 has been closed for a number of concerts and the bookings transferred to level 1; that will not please everyone. Sadly pp Christine S has died, another loss to RNS. Had good chat with pp at concert tonite and made RNS bar after 4 good chat. Travelled by train, getting 17:16 in and 22:53 home. Flushed a Woodcock from verge at Newbiggin at 16:30, presumably a recently arrived migrant. Earlier made QH4m4l and QHL to carry on the paper, now on propositions, last of the 8 categories of existence and chatted to D/N for 90 min on Skype; they’re wondering whether PL’s funeral will be on Zoom. Funds had a similar week to the last one: -9k by Thursday, finishing +18k after a rousing Friday on vague moves towards re-opening China and on US lower inflation report, boosting tech stocks. Position ytd is +529k gross (+30.0%), +481k net, compared to ftse 100 -0.9%, ftse 250 -16.5%, dow -7.1%, nasdaq -28.6%, bitcoin -63.4%. Still buying nasdaq (US tech) stocks as depressed and, at a dribble, UK housebuilders, but retain large commodity stock holdings; North Sea oil equities down to 2k value overall, probably 0k by Monday. Finally got money into new brokers IBKR through standard Lloyds FPO (£100, to reduce alarm, though it’s perfectly legit!). Propositions in Whitehead are a combination of conceptual and physical prehensions; all feelings have a physical dimension: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 10th: maximum 14C, minimum 13C, fresh SW, cloudy, occasional light rain. What incredible migrant totals for Honey-buzzard nationally in 2022 as recorded on BirdGuides and presented below. Such totals exclude repeated sightings at known breeding locations. Today met M/R at T4m4l for good catch-up followed by session in QHL to do work on ANPA paper, onto last of Categories of Existence – propositions – which gives a natural lead into feelings and emotion. Made G4g4s with R/A/P for lively time. Planning another session at QHL tomorrow with bonus of lunch there after Skype chat with N/D. Into S later to see RNS dances with Tchaikovsky's VC as star item! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Honey-buzzard total for 2022 season was 473 sightings (raw, not adjusted) on BirdGuides. The data has been adjusted for known breeding sites, giving a total of 380 birds on migration (152 spring, 228 autumn) compared to a total of 235 birds in 2021, a more normal total in preceding years (2017-2021). Records came throughout the season with peaks in June and September. In 2022 much higher total in May/June and more autumn birds suggest an increasing breeding population with indeed no gap in records in July this year. Map from BirdGuides for 2022 shows predominance of records in East Anglia, south-east England and central southern England but a general absence from the west, including the south-west. The species is apparently scarcer in northern Britain but we know that there is a sizeable breeding population in Scotland and NE England so lack of competent observers at migration points in these areas is suspected.


2021

2022

Period


12

4

April

52

61

May

30

87

June

0

28

July

35

58

August

93

136

September

13

6

October




94

152

spring (April -June)

141

228

autumn (July-Oct)




235

380

year (April-Oct)

Honey-buzzard migrant numbers in 2021 and 2022 on BirdGuides

November 9th: maximum 10C, minimum 8C, moderate SW, sunny most of day, one light shower. Still a few wasps on flowering ivy at Ordley. Did some energetic gardening today, cutting scrub with hedge trimmer along long party hedge with neighbours; they normally arrange to have it cut professionally in return for my cutting it on my own for many years. But of course they do need to be able to reach the hedge! Stayed up until 04:50 watching US election; still counting then but Republican wave already repulsed to some extent. Don’t really like either main party in US: both too extreme though at least the voters do have a clear choice. Up at 09:50, polishing section on contrasts in ANPA paper and starting on multiplicities, which I think just means diverse heterogeneous societies, a colimit in category theory, like nexus but with no typing. Terrible day for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies on collapse of a coin exchange; bitcoin is now down 67% ytd. Affected whole market, always does when an important section suffers like this. 2moro catching up with M at T4m4l while S comes to clean; then going to QH Library. Much later it’s G4g4s; Did make G4g4t today 4 good chat. Hope it all goes well: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

From 27/9-28/10 final Honey-buzzard records on BirdGuides for season, involving 13 birds of which 5 in Suffolk on 27/9 and another 4 there in October. (analysis to follow!)


14:38 28/10 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Landguard NR 14:00 possible reported over docks

13:56 08/10 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Lowestoft one flew over Asda early afternoon

12:09 07/10 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Hen Reedbed SWT one over car park this morning

20:21 04/10 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Kessingland juvenile flew south along cliff late afternoon

12:27 04/10 European Honey Buzzard Essex Colchester 12:17 dark-morph juvenile flew high north-east towards Highwoods CP viewed from North Station Road

16:05 03/10 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Copmanthorpe 15:00 one flew south

20:16 30/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head 14:30 one flew low to east

14:55 27/09 European Honey Buzzard Warwickshire Wormleighton 14:14 one to ESE of Wormleighton flew west

14:04 27/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Carlton Colville four flew over mid-afternoon: 3 moved south-east and 1 west

11:51 27/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Carlton Colville 11:30 one circled and flew west


November 8th: maximum 11C, minimum 8C, moderate S, sunny morning, cloudy later with heavy showers. Have indeed downloaded all my breeding season records from BirdTrack for the main raptor species and will start with Black Kite for analysis. Had productive day: adjusted style sheets (css) for Festival home page to compile piccies better. Represented Whitehead’s contrasts of contrasts as n-categories in formal category theory (natural match), now onto multiplicities which have some connection with nexus. Sold out large holding in North Sea’s largest oil and gas producer HBR (on windfall tax), reinvesting in US oil/gas and tech; slowly building up stake in US heavily-depressed tech sector, including in MSFT (Microsoft) and an ETF tracking the Nasdaq index (CNDX). Funds -5k on wtd, mainly due to fall in $. Have failed dismally to transfer any money (just £1k) to IBRK in USA, twice having current account suspended and twice 50-min chats with Lloyds fraud squad: very charming! Bill had similar problem with Nat West, trying to move money into a $ account, and gave up. So have revived my account with a London-based foreign exchange dealer and plan to transfer £ to them from my Lloyds account, for them to pass on as $ to IBRK. I don’t give up easily! Wasps are one of my favourite insects, for their dynamism, their impressive social order and as food for Honey-buzzard: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Up late listening to US election results: leaning towards Republicans; now 02:51. Time for bed!!

From 17/10-19/10 some very late Black Kite records on BirdGuides:

16:04 19/10 Black Kite Cambridgeshire Bainton GPs 15:30 possible flew north-east

15:30 18/10 Black Kite Somerset & Bristol West Moor, Hambridge 10:30 juvenile flew over this morning; also Dartford Warbler at Pitt Bridge

09:14 17/10 Black Kite Norfolk East Dereham probable flew over A47 bypass


Black Kite total for 2022 season was 193 sightings (raw, not adjusted) on BirdGuides (124 in 2021), occurring as laid out below, with comparison against 2021.

2021

2022

Period


0

0

February

2

2

March

22

68

April

49

52

May

29

25

June

11

12

July

8

15

August

3

5

September

0

14

October




102

147

spring (Feb -June)

22

46

autumn (July-Oct)




124

193

year (Feb-Oct)

Black Kite sightings in 2021 and 2022 on BirdGuides

In 2022 much higher total in April and more autumn birds suggest an increasing breeding population. Map from BirdGuides for 2022 shows predominance of records in East Anglia and the breadth of southern England. The species is apparently scarcer in northern Britain but a similar pattern (to be published soon) is seen for Honey-buzzard where we know there is a sizeable population in Scotland and NE England.


From 15/9-25/9 some Honey-buzzard records on BirdGuides, involving 23 birds of which 6 in Jersey: (still more late records to compile)


13:01 25/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Corton 12:55 possible over caravan park

15:13 24/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Grouville Marsh one flew over

14:10 24/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point 13:21 one flew south-east; also Western Cattle Egret flew over

13:55 23/09 European Honey Buzzard West Midlands Bilston 13:30 one circled over centre of Wollaston moving gradually south

14:01 22/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Middlebere 21/09 one flew over yesterday

13:59 22/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point one flew east this morning

08:37 22/09 European Honey Buzzard Isle of Wight Ventnor one flew east over Whitwell Road

16:05 19/09 European Honey Buzzard Durham Whitburn Coastal Park 16:03 one flew south-west

15:17 19/09 European Honey Buzzard Norfolk Breydon Water RSPB pale morph flew north over North Wall mid-morning; also juvenile Curlew Sandpiper

15:15 19/09 European Honey Buzzard Nottinghamshire Welbeck watchpoint 15:07 adult male again

11:16 18/09 European Honey Buzzard Lancashire Chorley 11:02 possible south of M61 between Horwich and Chorley

19:03 17/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Lackford Lakes SWT 16/09 one reportedly flew over Bess's Hide yesterday

13:11 17/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Hornsea 12:48 juvenile flew in off the sea, then headed west inland

10:51 17/09 European Honey Buzzard Nottinghamshire Langford Lowfields RSPB one flew south-east over Phase 1

16:16 16/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Lakenheath Fen RSPB 14:15 one then flew off south-east; also Osprey

14:07 16/09 European Honey Buzzard London Walthamstow Wetlands LWT one reported

13:06 16/09 European Honey Buzzard Buckinghamshire Butler's Cross one flew west over Coombe Hill early afternoon

13:04 16/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point two flew south this morning

13:20 15/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point two flew over this morning

11:56 15/09 European Honey Buzzard Highland Fort William 11:30 one flew SSE

07:47 15/09 European Honey Buzzard Isle of Wight Nansen Hill 07:43 one flew south



November 7th: maximum 13C, minimum 9C, moderate SW, sunny periods, almost dry, gusty winds by evening. Completed adding Northumberland records to BirdTrack for 2022 so backlog in hectic breeding season removed. Can now start analysis for each species, starting with Black Kite. Cause for some celebration! Made R at B4m4l and good company. Went for walk around Sele for some exercise. Did mega-shop at W – £87 to get £12 discount (need to spend £80 to qualify); doing shopping every 10 days to keep this going! Made very quiet G4g4S with A/R/P 4 good catch-up from yesterday! Good end to day!! Not up to date on all 2022 records – have about half of those from Marciac still to add and plenty of piccies still to sort. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 6th: maximum 11C, minimum 8C, moderate SW, sunny daytime, dry. Quiet day after last week’s opera bonanza! Had 3 Goldcrest in the garden and started feeding the birds for the winter season with grain and peanuts out. Made more progress on ANPA paper, completing Nexus and Eternal Object sections. Also added a few records to my WikiTree profile after a gap of 8 months since March. Had good chat with son at 17:00 for an hour and made G4g4s with D/B/R/P and a boisterous group of Hexhamshire young farmers! Hope to complete processing backlog of bird records tomorrow with those at Prudhoe 26/7. Also tomorrow have R at lunch and of course G4g4s. Highlight of today was watching the Gulls play Derby in FA Cup round 1 on ITV, who showed the whole game. We were 2-0 down shortly after half-time but rallied to draw 2-2 with a goal at 90+5 after they’d been reduced to 10 men. Crowd was passionate. We’ve had a terrible season so far, bottom of National League, so hope this is a turning point! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 5th: maximum 11C, minimum 5C, light W, steady rain daytime, clear by evening for fireworks. Productive day: represented eternal objects by constant functor in category theory, with nice diagram constructed on paper, new construction-type for me. Bird-records: added 28/7 North Wood, Haltwhistle, and 25/7 Styford, leaving just 26/7 Prudhoe to do. Went into NCL via CAL by car and Metro. Orpheus by Opera North was brilliant: very successful combination of South Asia and European culture. Music was by Monteverdi and Jasdeep Singh Degun (also a virtuoso sitarist). Orpheus was played by Nicholas Watts and Eurydice by the Tamil singer Ashnaa Sasikaran. Instruments included viola, lirone, theorbo, cello, harpsichord, tabla, violin, esraj, ghatam, harp, flute, percussion and trumpet, a true mixture of mediaeval, English and Indian instruments. I understood that seven south Asian cultures were included in the piece to make it truly representative. The story is simple: Eurydice dies suddenly, Orpheus visits the land of the dead, they agree to release her provided Orpheus does not look back on their departure. But he inevitably does, Eurydice has to stay dead but Orpheus escapes and attempts to adjust to his new circumstances. An amazing evening, colourful, multicultural and rhythmic: a great credit to all concerned. Met M/L there, thought they’d be at the Sage! Made Br4rw4s 4 old tyme’s sake!! Back on 23:00 to CAL for drive to HEX, so back home at 23:55. Sadly lost another friend, Philip Latham, to cancer on 2/11; he was my Munro mountain walking partner in Scotland; funeral on 24/11 at West Road, Newcastle with wake in Riding Mill later that day. It’s gone 02:00 (6/11), feeling sleepy, sweet dreams lie ahead: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 4th: maximum 9C, minimum 5C, light W, sunny morning, cloudier later, dry, cool. Had good chats with N/D on Skype in morning and D/D in DoW4g4s. Had good late lunch at QHC with work on paper either side up until 17:30. Am now working on Eternal Objects, constants or time-invariant data, expressed in category theory as constant functors. Expect to resume work on Black Kite records at North Wood, Haltwhistle, tomorrow from 29/7; that’s the penultimate Northumberland records for last season. Funds had a very volatile week, in movements associated with bottom of bear market, dropping by 20k wtd on Thursday morning after mega interest rate rises in US/UK but shooting up to +24k at end of week on rumours of China reopening from Covid! So 44k swing in a day and a half: strong nerves needed at the moment. Bought a dognose fork 1705 (Queen Anne) in latest Ag Spoon Auction for £228, plus commission. Tomorrow’s highlite is Orpheus at TR, going by car to CAL and Metro through to Monument. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 3rd: maximum 11C, minimum 3C, light W, sunny all day, dry, cooler. Had 5 Fieldfare W at Ordley at 12:10 where an adult Common Buzzard was calling. Also 16 Fieldfare at Merryshields at 11:40 from train. Had good breakfast, cooked but also plenty of fresh fruit. Then home on train, leaving at 11:23 from NCL-HEX. Whole 3 days have been very relaxing. Some catch-up at home. Out to G4g4s with R/P/A 4 good chat with E on: gr8 end to day! Road gritted, air temperature 1C and frost looking likely by dawn. 2moro it’s Skype session with N/D at 10, then off to QHC4ll and library in afternoon for more work on ANPA paper. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

November 2nd: maximum 11C, minimum 6C, fresh S, dull morning with rain in the wind, heavy driving rain setting in mid-afternoon, cool. Continued base in NCL at JI at St James Gate, now taken over by Leonardo. Caught 12:06 to ALM on TPE, coming back at 15:00 on LNER, cost £7.50, Weather deteriorating at end and LNER express train failed to stop at Morpeth, overshooting on the wet rails and having to reverse into the station to collect bemused passengers! Birds were quite exciting: Barnacle Goose 27 SW and 17 feeding in field, 54 Whooper Swan feeding in field, gathering of c450 geese comprising 430 Canada Goose, 17 aforesaid Barnacle Goose and 4 Pink-footed Goose, 13 Little Grebe in estuary in loose flock, 1 Little Egret, 165 Wigeon, 37 Teal, 90 Curlew (flock 81 in field), 23 Redshank, 2 Dunlin, 10 GBBG (7 ad, 3 1w), in total of 30 bird-types. The day was good for exercise with 11km walked. Hotel is friendly, classy and efficient with excellent breakfasts and late bar! Saw Traviata for 3rd time in a few weeks, have seen Cast A twice, this evening was with Cast B: Dublin-born Máire Flavin as Violetta (Cast A: Alison Langer), Oliver Johnston as Alfredo (Nico Darmanin), Stephen Gadd as Giorgio (Damiano Salerno), Manoj Kamps at conductor (Jonathan Webb). Don’t really want to say who was better but for Violetta liked AL’s total immersion and MF’s fantastic voice; for Alfredo the youthful ND was a more natural cast; for Giorgio DS looked better as the ‘godfather’; and didn’t really notice much difference between the conductors, after all the orchestra is the same, except perhaps MJ was a little more racy in the orgy of Act 1. The maid Annina was played both nights by ‘my’ Amy Payne very elegantly. The doctor Grenvil was also played both nights by the appropriately named Matthew Stiff, capturing well the essence of the 19th century private doctor. These 6 take the final bow; quite a lot of minor roles and the chorus not there – a pity! Still on third time round found it a very moving experience: Verdi is one of my 3 favourite opera composers, with Wagner and Puccini. Tosca by Puccini is popular item of 2nd part of season. Someone there looked familiar: delighted to see the interest!! Had chat in intervals with L/M/S, fellow RNS partners. Had to buy my own ticket and rw tonite. Earlier made VctCmt4m4t+ rw. Have a very difficult choice on Saturday: Orpheus at TR or Belgian National Orchestra at S; think it will be ON as the insight event at Leeds really wetted my appetite; pity we have this clash! Train strike on 5/11 so into CP and then Metro to TR. No more trips planned for November and December at the moment but I’m a restless creature!! Was plenty of room at the Inn for some desirable company: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Opinion from Bloomberg yesterday in their daily newsletter to their subscribers:

The gains from windfall taxes on energy firms may be less than hoped for and the consequences substantial, Bloomberg's editors write. Imposing an arbitrary tax on a small subset of companies sets a dreadful precedent, penalizing shareholders and punishing investment. There are no easy solutions to hard problems and a windfall tax is no solution at all.

Am liquidating remaining UK oil and gas holdings leisurely, putting some of proceeds into oil and gas in USA/Brazil/Falklands. The UK’s unreliability tax-wise will harm us enormously in the long run: low inward investment and no energy security as companies shun us. Such taxes are associated with desperate banana republics. I have no quoted European stocks: again, think the EU is far too fond of state interference in the market. Lack of energy investment will keep prices of the commodities higher for longer as supply decreases, damaging consumers’ wealth.

November 1st: maximum 12C, minimum 8C, light W, heavy rain overnite, drier daytime and evening, cooler. Well ON have certainly polished up their La Traviata: exquisite tonite and such warm hospitality from the ON crew: well a few rw and good chat b4 and in the 2 intervals. Music was absolutely brilliant and going to compare it to the alternative cast, on Wednesday evening, staying overnight in JI, Scotswood Road, quite classy! Bit of birdwatching up the coast tomorrow! Day had other highlites: one in particular: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Funds minus 5k wtd continuing recent weakness: some think PoO is going down, I don’t: American Strategic Petroleum Reserve is running dangerously low: it’s being abused in desire to keep oil prices down before midterm elections.

October 31st: maximum 14C, minimum 9C, light S, bright daytime, heavy rain in evening and into nite, cooler. Made QH Library from 15:00-17:50 to continue work on ANPA paper, where good progress made, relating Whitehead’s concrescence to closure through adjointness in a Locally Cartesian Closed Category. Have got diagrams working in the paper. Went on to Rotary at B4m4s where good talk by army officer and good meal with dessert and cordial company. Back home for an hour and then out to G4g4s where met A/R/P 4 good chat. Had frog and Barn Owl at Newbiggin at 21:30 and 2 Tawny Owl at Ordley at 20:30. 2moro home in the morning but out later for 2 days in NCL for ON. Bye for now: lots of kisses to the most gorgeous one. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 30th: maximum 14C, minimum 10C, moderate SW, dull morning, sunny later, mild. Here’s summary of bird report for Devon from 20/10 to 27/10 and totals:

56 species from 169 records, 6 complete lists, 16 places

Butterflies were of 2 types: Red Admiral 4 (3 Dartmouth 23/10, 1 Teignmouth 26/10), Painted Lady 2 (2 Dawlish Warren 26/10). One dragonfly noted: Southern Hawker at Dawlish Warren 26/10. Some piccies are to follow, both on personal side and of wildlife.

Also processed Black Kite records from 28/7 Sinderhope and 30/7 Hexham NE (abortive trip). Just 2 sheets to process for Northumberland for whole 2022 season, both in late July. Today had walk in Hexham Sele from 12:55-14:30. Had 14 bird-types on walk, including a singing Dipper, 8 Coal Tit, 6 Blackbird, 6 Robin. Plenty of wasps around still on flowering ivy with c20 at Ordley, c5 at Elvaston, c20 at Stainthorpe Court. Had 2 rabbit at Ordley on return from pub (G4g4s with B/D/P/R 4 enjoyable time) at 23:45 and a Tawny Owl calling at Elvaston at 23:30. 2moro it’s a quiet day until R at B4m4s (evening) and G4g4s but cleaner S is coming in afternoon at 15:30, so will be out then. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 29th: maximum 12C, minimum 11C, light E, dull all day, cooler. Quiet day: catch up at home; had 90 min chat on Skype with N. Had Brown Hare on grass at back: plenty to eat! Completed processing Styford and Bywell Black Kite for 2/8; plenty of good piccies. In the middle of processing 17/8 drive to Froxfield and back from Ealing, then all done for August. Booked up at Jury’s Inn, NCL, for 2 nites next week with breakfast for £131 to fit in with ON. Will write 2moro: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 28th: maximum 14C, minimum 11C, moderate SW, heavy rain in morning, becoming sunny later, no sea! Car into service from 09:30-14:30; in fine condition they said – no warranty claims! Paid £39 for various cleaning of A/C and transmission systems. They sent me a text message with 2 videos of their checking of car – high tech! So was pleased with service! Did a lot more work on ANPA paper in QH Library, cleaning it up so it ran in LaTeX without errors, giving smart pdf output, which can polish. Had lunch at QHC. Did W4bigshop – £84 b4 discount of £12 – on way to DoW at 19:30. Made DoW4g4s and good chat with D/D! Funds are -22k on last 2 weeks; high volatility suggests a contest between buyers and sellers; prepared to take some losses now in hope for better 2023 for markets. Tried transferring 1k via IBAN with Lloyds to IBKR in USA: initially not accepted, current account suspended, 40 min wait on telephone line to speak to fraud squad, 10 min chat, think it’s all cleared! Have quiet weekend coming up with only N on Skype at 10 on Saturday as event. Son is hearing all 15 Shostakovitch SQ at South Bank over the weekend! I’ve got 3 operas next week with ON at TR, NCL. Time for bed: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 27th: maximum 18C, minimum 13C, moderate SW, sunny intervals with showers expected, sea choppy. Journey back was very smooth: taxi turned up on time, all trains on time so 8 hours was spent in comfortable style. Did a lot of work on ANPA paper again, but more difficulty with a few areas as went deeper into concrescence, which appears to be simply concretising, that is converting a conceptual or virtual structure into a new actual entity. Also looking at eternal entities, which are public facts or constants; Whitehead has private side to his entities, represented today by encapsulation. Have installed MiKTeX on the laptop for text processing on the fly to produce a pdf. Caught slow train from Teignmouth to Exeter and that was good as slow through Dawlish Warren, where on Exe in all had 1400+ Wigeon, 900+ Dunlin, and 2 Shelduck, 30 Mallard, 27 dark-bellied Brent Goose, 27 Mute Swan, 2 Cormorant, 31 Little Egret; added first 2 to list. Most amazing sight of day was 3 Red Kite as individuals flying over Peterborough city. Coupled with big sis’ recent sightings of Red Kite over Ealing, this seems to suggest they are moving into urban areas. House was warm as had left heating on low. In reporting monthly readings, noted that my balance had gone from +£66 at start to minus £1,557 by end; E.ON are charging me estimated readings on an old defective meter taken away 9 months ago; think it’s a computer cock-up as they tried to update account charges automatically before the latest price hike. But anyway have emailed them right away asking them to remove the old meter from my account; have not yet received a formal bill, will be interesting to see if their monitoring system picks it up; formal complaint is next stage if not quickly rectified to force review. Back to G4g4s where met R/M/A for good catch-up with L in attendance. 2moro sees car’s 2nd service in HEX at BStM – it‘s 2 years old! So will be in QH Library in morning. No trips planned for a while but plenty of concerts to come, including end of month: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 26th: maximum 18C, minimum 15C, moderate SW, sunny intervals all day, almost dry. sea choppy. Took ferry across from Shaldon to Teignmouth, cost £2: it’s not far! Then train from Teignmouth to Dawlish Warren for walk along dunes into the Nature Reserve. From 12:30-15:50 had 26 bird-types, including 2 male Cirl Bunting, 4 Yellowhammer, 8 Shelduck, 6 Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 1 Redshank, 3 Oystercatcher, 36 Linnet, 11 Goldfinch, 11 Greenfinch, 32 GBBG (30 adult, 2 1w), 1 Moorhen, 11 Cormorant. Raptors comprised 2 1w Kestrel hovering and one Common Buzzard up over Eastdon at 14:22, mobbed by Jackdaw. Eastdon is where my maternal grandfather William Nicholls farmed along with his wife Mabel Lena Holbrook. Had 2 Painted Lady butterflies, a Southern Hawker dragonfly and many wasps were around flowering ivy. The reserve is suffering from coastal erosion of the dunes and the Warren Golf Club behind is also beginning to look precarious. Much work continues on the sea walls at Teignmouth and Dawlish to fortify the sea defences. At Teignmouth, where took many piccies for memory purposes, had a Red Admiral butterfly. Current position for Devon trip is:

54 species from 155 records, 6 complete lists, 14 places

Took taxi back to Ness House (£10) and booked taxi for tomorrow morning for 9. Dinner was again good, going back to the sea bass. Looking forward to return; it’s lovely visiting my former haunts but no inclination to retire here! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 25th: maximum 16C, minimum 15C, moderate SSE, sunny intervals in morning, moderate rain setting in in mid-afternoon. sea choppy. Got out at 10:45 while still fine and back at 15:30 when deteriorating. Had lunch of tuna sandwich + salad and Americano at Clipper cafe, an old haunt of family in our visits to Shaldon where in-laws lived. Had good walk up Teign Estuary from mouth opposite Ness where staying towards Combe Cellars with tide going out revealing large areas of mud. Had 31 bird-types including 6 Greenshank, 13 Turnstone, 3 Curlew, 123 Oystercatcher, 12 Little Egret, 22 Cormorant, 4 Grey Heron, 22 Mute Swan, 1 Redwing, 2 Starling W. Raptors comprised 5 Common Buzzard: 2 at Haldon SW, 2 on N side, 1 on S side. Dinner was again good with mushroom soup, beef stew, Americano, rw&br, cost £45. Did some work on Black Kite piccies from 2/8 at Styford/Bywell. Over 2-week period funds are now minus 3k, suffering from rise in £ as go from +7k halfway through the period. Cannot really grumble: have made gains from fall in £ for most of year. Suspect that Sunak’s honeymoon period will be short as harsh realities reassert themselves in the UK economy. Starting a new account with Interactive Brokers to gain better coverage of North America market and improved bond dealing. 2moro is last day here, may go to Teignmouth on ferry and Dawlish Warren by train. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 24th: maximum 16C, minimum 11C, light SW, sunny spells, dry. Busy morning clearing-up villa before leaving at 10:00 in large taxi for TOT; I paid this time £50, including tip; it’s about 25km. At Harbertonford on way had 2 Redwing, 3 Raven and 5 Fieldfare moving SW. This village has some fame: birthplace of my maternal great-grandfather Jeffry (sic) John Nicholls, son of a wheelwright, on 17 Feb 1859. Travelled with family to Newton Abbot on train, where we said fond goodbyes and caught local train to Teignmouth, while they went on to PAD. I got a taxi to Ness (£9) House in Shaldon, where dropped case at 12:20 and went out for a walk around the Ness headland, including the Ness Cove and the cliffs above. Had 28 types of bird, including 2 Balearic Shearwater N, 6 Gannet S, 18 Cormorant, 10 Shag, 56 Oystercatcher, 1 Little Egret, 2 Raven, 3 Goldcrest in bushes on clifftops, 4 Redwing SW, 24 Goldfinch, 4 Bullfinch, 1 Green Woodpecker. Raptors comprised 2 Common Buzzard calling E of Teignmouth Station and a male Kestrel hovering over cliffs in the Ness Cove; signs of a Sparrowhawk at the Ness with panicky birds. No butterflies but one hornet while sitting on bench watching estuary; wasps fairly common around ivy and a piece of dog dung, looking for flies. So interesting day. Hotel is good, got bit of a sea view from my large room and residents have the lounge overlooking the Estuary for dinner, which cost £43 for soup, sea bass, Americano, rw and brandy, with free Prosecco as intro treat! Lovely views of my home-town Teignmouth from the hotel in good weather today. Planning to explore Teign Estuary upstream tomorrow and Teignmouth on Wednesday. Wish someone was here: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 23rd: maximum 16C, minimum 13C, moderate S, spells of heavy rain, dry interludes. Highlight of weekend was family lunch at Cherub Inn, Dartmouth, founded 1380 and likely patronised by those 2 pirates, Walter Raleigh and Francis Drake, in 16th century. Party rose to 21 with arrival of another nephew, his partner, and 3 children. We had a very good time: had Chilli Mexican-style for main course with crumble and ice cream for dessert and a couple of stout and a Russian coffee to wash it all down. Cost was £550 in all, for which we’d already made a contribution. Kids became a bit riotous on return: water-pistol fights, hide and seek, balloon blowing (and some bursting) with a machine! Think neighbours will be glad to see us go. Niece and her sister-in-law went in swimming with wet suits on! 2moro morning is end of party and I move on to Shaldon. Today saw 3 Red Admiral butterflies and a Raven. Very interested to hear that all of daughter’s family are about to take autosomal DNA tests. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 22nd: maximum 16C, minimum 14C, light SE, few spots of rain, otherwise dry, mild, airstream very unstable, sea choppy. Villa is beautiful on 3 levels, close to River Dart, with access for boats, and grand views over the Dart Estuary, Kingswear, and Dartmouth. We went for walk in afternoon to Sugary Cove Beach, with a narrow steep descent into the Cove from the Road but with well-constructed steps. We came back by boat from Dartmouth Castle (14th century) to the town. Younger sister arrived with partner: they’re staying in a hotel nearby but in the daytime are with us, so 16 people now. We had cake-cutting today at noon, meal in this evening and tomorrow have lunch out at a restaurant in the town; thunderstorms are forecast over next 24 hours. Did keep a bird list (9 types), having 8 Shag, 4 Cormorant, 1 Gannet 1w N, plus a Grey Seal. Great to see everyone again and so pleasing that granddaughters are playing so well with nephew’s kids though latter are a bit older. Hope the gorgeous one is keeping fit: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 21st: maximum 18C, minimum 14C, moderate to fresh SW wind, steady rain punctuated by pulses of torrential rain, mild, a bad Devon day weather-wise in all its glory. Had very nice breakfast of salmon and scrambled egg in bar at hotel; a popular venue for the locals for breakfast and coffee. Very pleased with stay – friendly, efficient and comfortable. Memorial service was fitting for memory of Mike Heather, my close colleague for 45 years. It was held in St Mary’s Church in Totnes, was well-attended and concentrated on his human qualities. His contribution to academia was not so conspicuous, so very glad I attended to stress to his family the keenness of his endeavour and the worthy problems he was attempting to tackle. The wake was held at Dartington Hall, one of Mike’s favourite stomping grounds, and I’m sure he would have appreciated the choice. They had tried to hold it at the Royal Seven Stars Hotel, where I was staying, but they didn’t have the staff. Felt rather drained at the end – will carry on our work to the best of my endeavour but it’s always sad, losing your confidant.

Made my way to TOT where met son and daughter and granddaughters off late-running 17:48 train (one I caught day before) and we all went down by taxi to our villa in Dartmouth. So wet everywhere with floods on road from time to time. Cost was £50 including tip, paid by son; the driver was very helpful in locating our abode. Great to meet family again, plus elder sister, niece and partner, nephew and partner and their two children through her, and nephew and partner through younger sister who’s arriving tomorrow. So 14 people to date. Funds finished week +7k after one or two wobbles. Have moved some money into US tech and UK housebuilders as their prices are very depressed. But main emphasis remains energy and natural resources, particularly overseas. Did some birdwatching in Totnes around the Dart in poor weather, getting 16 bird species, including 2 Little Grebe, 18 Pied Wagtail, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Moorhen and 46 Redwing W in groups of 40 and 6 at 12:32 and 12:50.

October 20th: maximum 17C, minimum 15C, rain middle day, sunny later. Travel down went well from HEX-TOT – everything on time (7 hours 53 min via KGX and PAD ; would rather have some exercise in middle of journey than be cooped up in direct CC via Midlands); full of nostalgia as return to roots with train going through Teignmouth and up the Teign Estuary, where brought up until went to University at Hull; am staying there after stay on Dart. Staying at Hotel Royal Seven Stars for one night where had good meal of steak with pepper sauce, crumble, Americano, couple of g, all for £46 including tip; cost for B&B is £91. Did masses of work on train on ANPA paper, wouldn’t say broken back of it but enormous progress as now up to the 8 Categories of Existence; keep on thinking over to you Mike but that’s not an option. Birds in Devon included a Common Buzzard at Bradninch, 10 Black-tailed Godwit on Exe at Turf, 30 Curlew and 10 Dark-bellied Brent Goose at Cockwood on Exe (near where mother brought up at Eastdon Farm), a Great White Egret at Teignmouth, 3 Little Egret, 20 Mute Swan, an Oystercatcher, 20 Curlew, at Bishopsteignton. Not too surprised at Liz Truss’ exit but with 266 MPs voting for Putin in yesterday’s fracking vote, still think the country is totally complacent about our energy security. The country is ungovernable with such an unrealistic electorate and its representatives. America is at last giving the green light with longer-term assurances that oil/gas will continue to prosper there and that’s from a much stronger base with regard to self-sufficiency; Canada has talked the talk but maintains a vibrant energy industry. The UK and Europe are failing to address the supply side and face de-industrialisation on a mega scale. Will be a harrowing day tomorrow. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 19th: maximum 10C, minimum 9C, light E, cloudy, few spots of rain. At Ordley in morning had a Tawny Owl at 4, a Common Buzzard at 11 and 140 Redwing coming out of the sky from E at 11:30. Made QH Library and made good progress on ANPA paper, getting stuck into nexus, which appears to be a colimit with intension. Also had lunch at QHC and then met B at G4g4t 4 good chat b4 he starts some immune therapy on Friday. Then made QH 4 Sound of Musicals, a show put on by HASS (Hexham Amateur Stage Society) of which I’m a patron, contributing £60 for this production. It was their 90th anniversary so musicals across the years were presented from Pirates of Penzance, through Oklahoma to Evita, Sound of Music, Les Miserables. Very enjoyable, pleased to see CA again and our librarian letting her hair down! Made B4rw4s afterwards with good chat to L who was acting as big Controller!! Very warm feelings to someone who’s empathetic: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 18th: maximum 11C, minimum 8C, light W, sunny morning, cloudy afternoon, dry. Beautiful day, completed hedge cutting in front garden, taking final crest off leylandii and top off beech hedge. Still quite a lot to do around the back but pleased at progress. Made Lindisfarne Gospels at the Laing, NCL, in RNS function for pp. Very pleasing: private chat and show around exhibition, not to mention 2 ww. Came back with recent widow L (see 14/10) on train and drove her home in HEX. Very pleased to see good reviews for Orpheus https://operanorthmail.co.uk/3T5R-1HWJP-08DE1882506287D82BEIFH8EA9C5F9074C95C7/cr.aspx. xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Funds are unchanged on wtd. Here’s some recent climate data:

Climate upward trend in temperature continues at 0.13C per decade. Temperature rise continues to be much stronger in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere or the Tropics. La Niña looks set to continue. The Arctic ice cover has stabilised and Antarctic ice cover is proving to be very variable. The Atlantic 2022 hurricane season is a low-key affair, contrary to forecasts.

UAH Global Temperature Update for September, 2022: +0.24 deg. C. https://www.drroyspencer.com/uah-global-temperature-update-for-september-2022-0-24-deg-c/

Global climate trend since Dec. 1 1978: +0.13 C per decade. September Temperatures (preliminary): Global composite temp.: +0.24 C (+0.43°F) above the seasonal average. Northern Hemisphere: +0.43 C (+0.77 °F) above seasonal average. Southern Hemisphere: +0.06 C (+0.11 °F) above seasonal average. Tropics: +0.03C (+0.05°F) above seasonal average.

The global atmospheric temperature departure-from-average in September dropped a bit from August to +0.24 °C (+0.43 °F) above the long-term average, down slightly from +0.28°C (+0.50 °F). The decline was evident over the SH as the temperatures there fell -0.18 °C (-0.32 °F) from August. As noted last month, the extratropical warmth, especially in the NH, during this multi-year La Niña episode has been a remarkable feature that has kept the global average near or above zero since commencing in late 2020 and is consistent with a long-term upward trend in global temperature. That trend according to these observations is +0.13 °C per decade since December 1978. The latest values of various El Niño/La Niña indices indicate the La Niña (cold phase of the cycle) continues and is predicted to continue through the NH winter. The influence of La Niña generally induces cooler temperatures, so that one would expect with its potential demise next year, global temperatures will rise somewhat from where they are now. This is not a prediction, simply an observation based on the past. The latest on the evolution of La Niña and its anticipated diminishment by 2023 is provided by NOAA below.

The planet’s warmest spot, in terms of the monthly departure from average, was over southern Greenland at +5.4 °C (+10.2 °F). Areas of especially warm temperatures compared with average occurred over western N America and a band that stretched from the Sahara eastward across southern Russia and northern China to the North Pacific Ocean. Scattered locations in the high-latitude southern oceans were also warm. The coolest departure from average was in the far South Pacific north of the Amundsen Sea at -3.5 °C (-6.3 °F) just edging out a cold pocket over Belarus which was the centre of a cold area of northern Europe. Northern Russia and scattered areas of the high latitude southern oceans were also cool. https://www.nsstc.uah.edu/climate/ Sept 2022

La Niña is present .* La Niña Advisory Equatorial sea surface temperatures (SSTs) are below average across most of the Pacific Ocean. The tropical Pacific atmosphere is consistent with La Niña. There is a 75% chance of La Niña during the Northern Hemisphere winter (December-February) 2022/23, with a 54% chance for ENSO February April 2023. https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/enso_evolution-status-fcsts-web.pdf. October 17

After reaching the minimum on September 18, Arctic sea ice extent has been steadily increasing. With the passage of the equinox, the sun has set at the North Pole. September average ice extent ended up tying with 2010 for eleventh lowest in the satellite record.

The September 2022 average Arctic sea ice extent was 4.87 million square kilometres (1.88 million square miles), tying with 2010 for eleventh lowest in the satellite record (Figure 1a). Extent was 1.54 million square kilometres (595,000 square miles) below the 1981 to 2010 average and 1.30 million square kilometres (502,000 square miles) above the record minimum set in 2012. The annual minimum extent was reached on September 18 and the autumn freeze-up is now well underway. Antarctic sea ice extent has exhibited extreme inter-annual variability with record highs and record lows within the past decade. There is also strong regional variability, with some areas showing long-term trends of ice loss, with others showing gains. One region with a notable downward trend in extent is the Bellingshausen Sea, west of the Antarctic Peninsula. The Peninsula region has also experienced a strong multi-decade warming trend, which has resumed after a decade-long hiatus. One factor in these changes is a strengthening of the Amundsen Low the brings southward winds to the region, which raise air temperatures and compact the ice. A new study by Dalaiden et al. suggests that this Amundsen Low strengthening is caused by an anthropogenic forcing, and a coupling to the general temperature pattern and trends in the Pacific Ocean. http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/ October 4

2022 Atlantic hurricane season. Actual activity to date from 1/6: 11 named storms, 5 hurricanes, 2 major hurricanes. Well below forecasts though still some of the season to go up to 30/11. Just one very damaging hurricane Ian which hit Florida. Average activity up to 30/11 is: 14.4 named storms, 7.2 hurricanes, 3.2 major hurricanes (1991-2020). Most forecasts were for an above average year. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2022_Atlantic_hurricane_season

October 17th: maximum 13C, minimum 8C, fresh SW, sunny intervals, dry, feeling very fresh. Processed 3/8 Hexham NE including piccies of Honey-buzzard and Black Kite. Processed Black Kite piccies from 29/8 at Dilston. Made R at B4m4l; good talk from Dave Best on drone photography; good for landscapes and buildings, not so sure it’s good for wildlife as need heavier camera with zoom, putting you over 250 grams for weight of zoom and into a tighter regulatory regime. There’s an archetypal account of using drones for studying eagles in Tasmania, in which the eagles took an intense dislike to the intruders and attacked them, smashing them to the ground. But I think they are used extensively by professionals in North America for studying nesting birds including raptors and doing censuses: need training for use of drones and ideally institutional support for buying drone, insuring it and providing a framework for usage. Have had some talks on them at RRF conferences and I did attend a workshop on them in RSA. Bought 50 purple crocus for £10 in aid of polio campaign at R. Made G4g4s with R/P and further chat with R on drones as he’s got one. Am interested, will do more research: like gadgets which extend interests! Have almost completed August as just have 2/8 Bywell and some sightings from M4 on 17/8. But plenty still to do in July: 4 site visits and quite a lot of records from Marciac, France. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 16th: maximum 11C, minimum 8C, moderate SW, sunny morning, cloudy afternoon. Busy today, adding Trip Report for Chamonix, France, visit in August 2022 (Chamonix 2022) with summary:

Birds -- 46 species from 95 records, 7 complete lists, 12 places in Chamonix, France, area from 19 Aug - 27 Aug 2022. Raptors were of 11 types: Common Buzzard 11, Griffon Vulture 10, Honey-buzzard 4, Bearded Vulture 3, Short-toed Eagle 2, Golden Eagle 2, Egyptian Vulture 1, Black Kite 1, Tawny Owl 1, Kestrel 1, Peregrine 1. total 37 birds. Full bird records.

Butterflies15 species, 49 insects, 10 trips, 8 localities, 580-2134m asl: Small White 20, Shepherd’s Fritillary 4, Silver-washed Fritillary 4, Painted Lady 3, Speckled Wood 3, Green-veined White 2, Clouded Yellow 2, Common Blue 2, Geranium Bronze 2, Marbled Ringlet 2, Swallowtail 1, High Brown Fritillary 1, Small Tortoiseshell 1, Small Heath 1, Large White 1. Full butterfly records.

Honey-buzzard were noted at 2 localities: 1) at Argentière at 1252m with adult alarm call on 21/8 as walked towards mature spruce plantation and on 22/8 with a family group of 3 in the air above the tree line close together over the village; 2) at Les Gaillands at 1020m on 23/8 where an adult female left to forage from a dense spruce plantation, in contention with an adult Common Buzzard.

Added a recent photo of Michael Heather to process (category theory) web pages at http://nickrossiter.org.uk/process/index.html. Will add a tribute after memorial service in Totnes on 21/10.

Spent an hour from 14:40-15:40 out on the road outside house surveying the Devil’s Water. Quite a few migrants were seen – exiting summer visitors: 2 Swallow SW. Winter visitors from Scandinavia: Redwing 45 SW, 10 N; Fieldfare 3 SW; Brambling 2 W; Chaffinch 2 SW; Greenfinch 1 N. Birds moving: Siskin 2 N, 2 SW; Goldfinch 8 SW. Feeders: Jay 2; Red Kite, an adult up over Linnels at 15:13, mobbed by Jackdaw; 6 Blackbird. Started work on piccies from 29/8 in ‘Shire walk; have added data but piccies of Black Kite in particular here are useful. Next up data-wise is 2/8 Hexham NE. Made G4g4s with R/A/P 4 good chat. Missing someone: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 15th: maximum 11C, minimum 6C, moderate SW, sunny morning, heavy showers by evening. No walk today, bit blustery, decided to catch-up on records, completing all October ones and processing piccies for 5/8 of Black Kite and Honey-buzzard; will publish tomorrow. Made DoW4g4s with D/D 4 gr8 chat. Luxury villa in Dartmouth is costing us provisionally £335 per adult for the 3 nights with 15 occupants (11 adults, 4 kids) in main place and others arriving on a daytime basis. Looking forward to it, once memorial service is celebrated! Hope concert went well: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!.

From 21/9-15/10 some late Black Kite records on Bird Guides, probably involving just 3-4 birds:

21:27 15/10 Black Kite Dorset Lytchett Matravers possible flew over

10:16 14/10 Black Kite Highland Glen Nevis 09:00 one reportedly flew south

19:40 10/10 Black Kite Cornwall Trethewey adult is bearing a transmitter

14:11 10/10 Black Kite Cornwall Trethewey still from B3283 just beyond St Buryan this afternoon

11:30 10/10 Black Kite Cornwall Trethewey 11:20 one again in flight near The Bottoms

10:35 10/10 Black Kite Cornwall Trethewey 09:40 one still in valley below Crean then flew south-east

09:56 10/10 Black Kite Cornwall Trethewey 08:40 one still in field near The Bottoms at 50.0622, -5.6524 then flew towards Trethewey

16:31 09/10 Black Kite Cornwall Trethewey 16:20 one in field near The Bottoms at 50.0622, -5.6524

14:29 08/10 Black Kite Cornwall Polgigga 13:50 again over valley to north-east at Crean

13:12 08/10 Black Kite Cornwall Polgigga 13:00 one flew over Higher Bosistow Lane


October 14th: maximum 12C, minimum 2C, sunshine and showers, light SW, sunny, quite cold by 24:00 with clear skies. Came back though Dipton Wood at 23:45, seeing 1 Badger at Riding Mill, 1 Rabbit in Dipton Wood main, 4 Rabbit and a Tawny Owl at Ordley; earlier had a dead Grey Squirrel on road at Hexham S, a Kestrel at Styford N and a Jay at Throckley S at 12:00. Met Trish Sykes at wake who reported 2 Red Kite at Dukesfield on 8/10; she's seen less Red Kite in the 'shire this year. Attended funeral of Nick Norris at West Road Crematorium, NCL, at 12:30; met NH, S there to represent North Music Trust. Went back to B4m4ll in Hexham as wake so changed plans to stay in NCL 4 afternoon. Pleased 2 c my mate L again from G at B!! Music and yoga were main interests of couple and very pleased that L will keep up her patronage of RNS! Back at 18:08 on train RDM-NCL for concert; sat with S/M as T still at work. Concert by RNS was excellent – a rather austere opening with piece by Kaija Saariaho – Nymphea Reflection -- was followed by a brilliant solo performance of Schumann’s Cello Concerto by Anastasia Kobekina (Moscow born and reared, now in Germany) with Dinis Sousa conductor joining her for an encore ‘Intermezzo’ by Schumann for cello and piano. They finished with Beethoven 8: a very confident and expressive performance on a work they know well and one of my favourite symphonies. Stayed for a couple of rw with the orchestra b4 catching last train home, where chatting to one of the trustees of QH theatre, HEX. 2moro fancy a walk, seeing D/D in evening. Funds lost all last week’s gain at minus 24k on week; bemused at the political crisis: the public/media seems to be blissfully unaware of the crisis facing the country in maintaining living standards in the face of a full blown energy crisis. We need to solve many supply-side issues throughout the economy, most particularly in working skills, working population size, and in nuclear, oil/gas and even coal for energy infrastructure. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 13th: maximum 12C, minimum 8C, calm, sunny all day, dry, beautiful. Three interesting types of birds at Ordley: 12 Pink-footed Goose S, 1 Buzzard, 1 Chiffchaff. A Red Admiral was at Hexham on ivy blossom; plenty of hover flies, some bees but few wasps on flowering ivy in Hexham. Busy day gardening doing top of leylandii 4m high using steps and extended trimmer over 2 hours; needs final tidy-up along crest but arms aching and will leave that for another day. Had break in cutting with T4m4l with M/B and good chat. Made G4g4s with R/P/A at end of day 4 lively conclusion! Added 7/10 Ordley to BirdTrack so getting going again on bird records. 2moro sees funeral of NN at 12:30 at West End Crematorium in NCL (collection for North Music Trust); going to drive in, take car to CAL, change clothes and then go into NCL/GHD for work on prehension, meal and concert at S. Should sleep well tonight after all that exercise! Sweet dreams: xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Markets are so volatile: on latest inflation data in US, NASDAQ (tech) opened down 3% but finished 2% up. Another very trying week for funds but volatility today shows some people are buying into the avalanche of selling!

October 12th: maximum 13C, minimum 9C, light SW, mostly dry, shower at ttime. Intruder alarm duly serviced at 09:00; everything OK even battery which worked well during the great storm Arwen. Made QH Library at 13:00, had lunch at QHC and met B and the gang at G4g4t 4 gr8 chat! Did a lot more work on ANPA on the prehension concept, up to limit and colimit with diagrams, not at LCCC yet; will carry on doing a bit each day until prehension draft completed. Did do some hedge trimming this morning in front, cutting all at low level; plan to continue tomorrow with the tops; very good for keeping fit! Lunch is with M at Tans. Time for bed: it’s 01:08 (13/10): xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 11th: maximum 12C, minimum 9C, light SW, sunny, dry. Haircut at 11 with lively Jd at JG set me up for day! Catch-up on a number of tasks on computer until 17:00 when had FB video chat with son for an hour; all’s well, he’s coming to the Festival for opening and closing nights and jazz, going to Istanbul from NCL for a few days in between! Completed all Festival work – will review 2moro to check it’s all done!! Run on PayPal after its ill-advised account fine of $2.5k for malicious comment, to be judged by them alone; shares are down 75% from a year ago; would not keep a high balance with them: go woke, go broke! Markets continue in depression: minus 5k wtd on own funds, could be a lot worse with main indices off 1.5 to 2% in 2 days. 2moro it’s intruder alarm service at crack of dawn (09:00) and more active day with QH Library, QHC and G all lined up in afternoon; should get some more work done on ANPA paper after some tidying up today. Be in touch: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 10th: maximum 11C, minimum 7C, moderate W, sunny, dry, cool evening. Day to Leeds was very rewarding; learnt a lot about Monteverdi’s Orpheus and its conversion to a hybrid western Europe/south Asia version; sure it will be controversial and I asked the question: how do you cope with the lack of homogeneity across south Asia? There are many tensions in Indian films at the moment with north India (Bollywood) facing great challenges from south India (Hindu), where of course the thriving Indian IT centre is concentrated, around Bangalore. But it’s great to bring communities together so it will be fascinating to see how it works out. Indian classical music (raga) can be as intricate as western forms. We had a talk by a lecturer from York University, Dr Neil Sorrell, followed by seeing the close of rehearsals of bits that still need polishing with dress rehearsal on Wednesday and opening performance on Friday in Leeds. I’m seeing it in early November at Newcastle. We finished with a panel in q&a where a positive feel on all sides towards the Europe/Asia collaboration. Enjoyed the afternoon: very welcoming atmosphere for their patrons. Got back after yet another train cancellation by Trans Pennine jit 4 G4g4s with P/A/R 4 good chat. With quite long disjoint train journeys made gr8 progress on ANPA text, using Notepad on ‘phone under Android to record changes, backing up with email copies from time to time; predictive text eases the writing load enormously. Can see now that of Whitehead's main terms prehension is Locally Cartesian Closed (product), nexus is coproduct and Ultimate is topos, all very satisfying but still a lot of work to do to write it all up. Very pleased to hear from someone … xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 9th: maximum 13C, minimum 7C, light S, windy on moderate SW in evening with heavy rain showers. Today was music-day with concert by London Phil in afternoon. A large orchestra, made good use of, in Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet and Elgar’s Enigma Variations. The flautists were brilliant: gr8 to have JB and EG together again, EG deputising for CC and of course JB is their regular principal!! Benjamin Grosvenor was the star in Mendelssohn's PC 1, which has 2 fast movements and a very lyrical middle one. His 2 encores had the audience guessing, possibly Bartók or Shostakovitch but he does compose as well so might have been his own writings. Think Enigma Variations is the best large-scale English music of the romantic period, performed well under Edward Gardner. Good social day, meeting several partners and attendance was good: 3 levels filled. Going to funeral of Nick Norris from Hexham, principal partner with Linda in Newcastle West Road Crematorium on Friday; he died of stomach cancer just a few weeks after initial diagnosis, devastating. Had some decent exercise today, walking to S and back from station; had a quickie G4g4t at VctCmt and also a longer G4g4s at G. 2moro it’s ON insight in Leeds, going by train. 6/6 artists processed: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 8th: maximum 12C, minimum 8C, moderate W, dry, sunny spells, clear by evening, felt warmer today. Had good field trip to Stocksfield Mount from 13:20-15:30, finding 2 Honey-buzzard juvenile, 1 over Eltringham at 14:34 1 (12121), other over Bywell Short Wood, heavily mobbed by Rook at 14:49 2  3  4  5 (12122); 2 Red Kite, adult NE of Short Wood at 14:07, 1w over New Ridley at 15:08 1; 4 Common Buzzard: 2 adult +2 1w over Mount 1, a 1w over New Ridley 2 and 2 1w over Merryshields (total 7). Some interesting migrants in total of 27 bird-types: a Redwing W (first of season for me), a flock of 9 Brambling N, a Lesser Whitethroat over nearby trees (grey upperside, very clean white underside, rearing up and then down again) , a Swallow S, 3 House Martin SW, 8 Herring Gull adult W, plus 2 Jay, 11 mobile Chaffinch, 5 Siskin, 2 Bullfinch, 3 Goldfinch, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Stock Dove, 1 Grey Heron, and late butterflies: single Comma and Small White. Many wasps were on flowering ivy, c40. Heard some Canada Geese (say 10) over Newton at 23:00 coming out of DoW, after gr8 chat with D/D and the charming A on. Concert 2moro at S with London Phil. Michael Heather’s memorial service is in Totnes on 21/10 so rearranged trip starting that date to 20/10 and will join with family late afternoon on 21/10 for short journey to Dartmouth, where family do is on. It’s going to be an emotional week. Michael’s son S sent me a photo of his father, which I’d requested to add to my process web page as so many of the entries are our joint work. 4/6 artists processed : xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 7th: maximum 13C, minimum 7C, fresh SW, heavy rain in morning, sunny with heavy showers in afternoon. On the laptop in morning with good chat to N/D on Skype from 10-11:30 and joining plenary talk at Raptor Research Foundation in Florida from 13:00-14:30. The talk by Rob Fletcher was very interesting, on Snail Kite in the Everglades, which has been recovering thanks to an invasive Apple Snail, which is larger than the indigenous species, providing good food for the kite, which in a decade have started to develop larger bills to extricate them from their shells: evolution in action! Went for local walk from 17:30-18:45 and bumped into a juvenile dark-phase Honey-buzzard 1  2  3  4 (12120), which was floating around quite rapidly over the fields to NW of my house at Ordley. Got a few piccies: it disappeared to N, presumably a Scottish bird on migration. Also had a 1w Kestrel, a Nuthatch and 8 Tree Sparrow in total of 16 bird-types. Met D church treasurer out on walk for a chat: he knew a lot about Florida wildlife, including the one no-one loves: the invasive Burmese Python. Completed analysing piccies from 5/8 Prudhoe, confirming account below. Had a shock with my website. After Chrome/Vodafone collapsed in the morning on the desktop, restarted everything and was getting a solid error 403 Forbidden on all my own web pages. Tidied up the home directory, removing the .htaccess file and changing the main index file from .phtml to .html but no good. Noticed other people were still accessing my pages but laptop with Edge had same 403 message. Then found with ‘phone that that was the same with WiFi but if I switched it to 4G, it worked. So turned off WiFi router, left for 30 sec to drain and restarted: access problem solved! Funds had a much better week, recovering nearly all of last week’s losses with gain of 24k, giving +532k gross ytd, +485k net. PoO approaching $100 a barrel after OPEC cuts, setting off mini-boom in oil stocks. Have started accumulating US tech stocks and retained a few UK housebuilders but main thrust is still commodities, particularly oil. Markets as a whole had a decent Monday but were falling fast again by Friday. 2/6 artists processed: always delighted to help: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 6th: maximum 15C, minimum 11C, fresh SW, heavy showers, sunny interludes. Busy day, attended plenary session on Zoom from Raptor Research Foundation (RRF) for 1 hour from Florida on bromide poisoning in fish and eagles, met M at T4m4l and R/A at G4g4s with S on. Booked up train HEX-LDS next Monday £53 for insight event into Orpheus opera and renewed RRF sub for 2023 for $100, including extra for young researchers. Have indeed resigned from JLAF; reasons are complex but basically it’s too woke! Added Sinderhope 6/8 to BirdTrack with some piccies. Next up is 5/8 Prudhoe. Climate-wise looking at Holocene Thermal Maximum! Morning sees my hormone levels peak: xxx XXXXX!!!!!!

October 5th: maximum 13C, minimum 9C, moderate SW, heavy rain most of day, few sunny interludes. Busy day, made QH Library for work on ANPA paper, QHC4s4l, W4bigshop (£57), G4g4t 4 gr8 chat with B/T. Cleaner S came in afternoon. Made good progress on ANPA paper, getting the first section sorted, and intend to spend an hour a day on this now. Feel I have too many activities on at the moment, about to ditch JLAF. xx XXX!!! Great rendezvous with the most gorgeous one: xxx XXXXX!!!!!!

While no-one doubts that global temperatures are rising gently (0.13C per decade on satellite data from UAH) there is far from unanimity as to the cause though the climate emergency crowd attribute the rise (mainly in their models) solely to anthropogenic (human) factors, namely carbon dioxide. Two papers have recently been published, which suggests the models are not perfect. One suggests La Niña winters could keep on coming, as in this study at https://phys.org/pdf584031305.pdf. The full paper is Systematic Climate Model Biases in the Large-Scale Patterns of Recent Sea-Surface Temperature and Sea-Level Pressure Change by Robert C. J. Wills, Yue Dong, Cristian Proistosecu, Kyle C. Armour, David S. Battisti, in Geophysical Research Letters (August 2022) with plain language summary:

Regional climate change depends not only on the magnitude of global warming, but also on the spatial pattern of warming. We show that the spatial pattern of observed surface temperature changes since 1979 is highly unusual, and many aspects of it cannot be reproduced in current climate models, even when accounting for the influence of natural variability. We find a particularly large discrepancy in the rate of warming within the western Pacific Ocean and eastern Indian Ocean, which suggests that models have systematic biases in the response of sea-surface temperature patterns to anthropogenic forcing, because the contribution of natural variability to multi-decadal trends is thought to be relatively small in this region. Our work raises the possibility that the recent trends toward more La-Niña-like conditions may be partly a response to anthropogenic forcing, even though most existing climate model and paleo-climate evidence suggests that trends will eventually reverse toward more El-Niño-like conditions, with an associated shift in regional climate trends.

The second analyses recent temperature changes over the last 43 years on a regional basis. Climate Concerns, Some thoughts on our knowledge of the Earth's climate, at https://oz4caster.wordpress.com/monthly-trends/#:~:text=The%20September%202022%20global%20mean,since%20records%20began%20in%201979 (September 2022). It reports:

The pattern of temperature trends for the Southern Hemisphere middle latitudes and Antarctic is not consistent with hypothesized significant man-made global warming. Since carbon dioxide concentrations are relatively uniform across the globe on a time scale of years and show persistent upward trends since 1979, these flat and downward temperature trends indicate that hypothesized man-made global warming is not dominant and that other factors are likely to be more dominant over the last 40 years. The implication is that observed upward temperature trends in the Northern Hemisphere are also being dominated by other factors. These other factors need to be resolved before any kind of accurate future climate predictions can be made. Predictions made assuming that man-made global warming is dominant are likely to fail.

So the science maybe is not so settled! Why does the planet have such large divergent regional trends in warming/cooling? More to follow in this line …

October 4th: maximum 16C, minimum 12C, moderate SW, cloudy, rain from time to time, mild. Completed processing all records in September and October so next onto Black Kite tour in early August and finalising Chamonix. Planning to get back to ANPA paper though 2moro as copy needed by early December; may work in QH Library and have lunch in QHC, followed by G4g4t; S is coming to clean and it’s going to rain all day. Today after f&c+mp meal at HFB (£18) made piano recital at QH, with talented soloist Dominic Degavino. He played a varied programme of Beethoven Sonata 3, Beach Five Improvisations, Schubert Allegretto, Brahms Sonata 3.The Beethoven was the most expressive and the Brahms the most emphatic with great chords and bold playing. Amy Beach’s pieces were quite wistful. An enjoyable concert, met JR and wife (Rotarians) in interval for good chat over a rw. Had another rw afterwards at B where met D/P, also having a change from the G! Have booked up for an insight event in Leeds next Monday afternoon into their next production Orpheus; enjoy these as have experts discussing the work and how to perform it. Also following week invited to a Lindisfarne Gospels event at the Laing NCL by RNS coordinator NH. So music scene is good: xx XXX!! Funds are having a better week with +18k wtd as US boom slows, maybe limiting rate rises. Have bought into tech and oil this week with maybe NASDAQ bottoming and PoO Brent over $90 again.

Pleased to see BBC giving bad publicity for biomass: Drax: UK power station owner cuts down primary forests in Canada. A company that has received billions of pounds in green energy subsidies from UK taxpayers is cutting down environmentally-important forests, a BBC Panorama investigation has found. Drax runs Britain's biggest power station, which burns millions of tonnes of imported wood pellets - which is classed as renewable energy. The BBC has discovered some of the wood comes from primary forests in Canada. The company says it only uses sawdust and waste wood. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-63089348. Yorkshire power station Drax 'destroying ancient forests' BBC Panorama finds. In an investigation of Drax Power Station, BBC Panorama claimed the station is now emitting more greenhouse gases than when it burned coal. A Yorkshire power station is 'cutting down trees in ancient forests important for fighting climate change', a BBC Panorama investigation has claimed. Drax Power Station in Selby switched to burning wood pellets at its plant from coal, and in recent years has received £6bn in green subsides from the taxpayer as a result. But campaigners dispute claims burning wood pellets for energy is a truly renewable energy source. https://www.examinerlive.co.uk/news/local-news/yorkshire-power-station-drax-destroying-25169572.

Drax response to BBC Panorama programme on Canadian Forestry. A Drax spokesperson said: “Canada has some of the most highly regulated forests in the world which ensures the forests in British Columbia (BC) are managed properly and provide positive benefits to nature, the climate and people. “People living in and around these forests are best placed to determine how they should be looked after, not the BBC. Drax’s own world-leading sustainable sourcing policies are aligned with the rigorous regulatory frameworks and rules set by both the BC and UK governments. https://www.drax.com/press_release/drax-response-to-bbc-panorama-programme-on-canadian-forestry/.

IMHO biomass is a scandal. Drax has received £6 billion in subsidies to ship wood pellets from all over the globe to its furnaces at Drax to generate electricity. It would be better to burn coal (the power station lies in a coalfield) with latest equipment than to trash biodiversity in forests around the planet. The Eurozone also uses a lot of biomass to reach its targets on carbon emissions and forests are suffering in the current energy shortage. In the TV programme the Drax spokesman kept on saying “This is not in our business model” but what’s the relation between the model and reality: a question that could be aimed at all Green thinking: time for a critical rethink!

October 3rd: maximum 14C, minimum 12C, moderate SW, cloudy, sunny intervals, spots of rain. Busy today concluding Crete 2022 report and finalising Honey-buzzard breeding season results, as below. Now going to get backlog of records in UK from 19/9 to present compiled and then do the Chamonix report. Today made R @ B4m4l and G4g4s, latter with R/A. Completed glamorous job replacing downstairs loo seat (see 20/9): cleaner S had recruited a friend to saw through the hinges on the seized old ones while I was in London; I then ordered a replacement plastic one (£30) on Amazon which arrived yesterday and fitted today: so that’s a relief! 2moro going to concert 1 of HMS series at QH – a piano recital. Taking a winter off vaccinations (Covid/flu): far too many unexplained deaths and illness in healthy young people who’ve been recently vaccinated; heart disease (myocarditis) is a frequent common factor. Data from Israel in particular is disturbing https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-10928-z. So in massive catch-up at the moment: looking forward to November!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

From home page at Honey-buzzard Home Page:

15/09/22: Honey-buzzard end of breeding season: Overall 23 sites occupied, 18 male, 14 female. In fledging period from 28/8-15/9, in 14 sites, had 4 male, 4 female, 21+ juvenile seen, 1+ juvenile inferred, 30 birds total. Survey very much restricted to core of study area this year of Hexhamshire (Devil’s Water) and Tyne Valley W. In this core area the population was at saturation levels with high breeding success.

3rd October 2022: Added Trip Report for Crete visit in April 2022 (Crete 2022)

Birds: 67 species from 264 records, 14 complete lists, 12 places. 13 species of raptor, 75 birds: Common Buzzard 30, Common Kestrel 13, Griffon Vulture 8, Black Kite 6, Peregrine 4, Honey-buzzard 3, Bonelli’s Eagle 2, Sparrowhawk 2, Long-legged Buzzard 2, Lesser Kestrel 2, Steppe Eagle 1, Red-footed Falcon 1, Barn Owl 1. Full records in bird report.

Butterflies: 10 days of recording, 10 species, 154 insects: Small White 80, Speckled Wood 23, Holly Blue 16, Common Blue 10, Clouded Yellow 10, Swallowtail 6, Large White 5, Cretan Festoon 2, Small Copper 1, Painted Lady 1. Full records in butterfly report.

October 2nd: maximum 14C, minimum 8C, moderate W, mostly dry, sunny spells. Much better day weather-wise and house feeling nice and warm with baseload storage heaters; did light coal fire in evening for cheery glow. Taking it easy physically the last 2 days but out for a walk towards Dotland 3km at dusk and did make G4g4s with 3 mates R/B/D 4 gr8 chat. Wildlife in last 2 days included a badger over the road at Newbiggin yesterday at 23:00, a rabbit on the road at Ordley at 24:00 tonight, a Tawny Owl in the Sele at 23:30 tonight, and on walk, 2 adult Common Buzzard calling from Peth Foot and a Grey Heron at Peth Foot around 18:30 with 10 Blackbird, more conspicuous. Made massive strides on Crete report for April 2022: completed processing piccies of everything (birds, butterflies, other wildlife, scenery) for account, obtained summary of bird records from BirdTrack and converted to xhtml, ½ way through compiling butterfly records in spreadsheet. So confident complete report will be published tomorrow, then onto Chamonix report for August 2022 which is also close to finishing. It’s Rotary at B4m4l tomorrow and G4g4s again. To the gorgeous one: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

October 1st: maximum 13C, minimum 9C, moderate W, very heavy frequent showers, sunny intervals. Had a nice relaxing day after the hectic week. House is warm. Put a lot of work into my embryonic Crete 2022 page where now just have part of one day 15/4 to complete compilation of piccies. So almost there, maybe will finish tomorrow, at least to publish a draft. Had a female Sparrowhawk in plantation to N of house, wonder if it’s taking up residence. Late butterflies comprised a Red Admiral and a Small White. Met D/D at DoW in evening for gr8 catch-up. 2moro will be be back at G! Next concerts are Tuesday at QH in HEX and on Sunday with London Philharmonic at S. Hope the fancied one is fit: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

September 30th: maximum 14C, minimum 9C, moderate W, very heavy frequent showers. Had left one storage heather on low but house felt cold and put on remaining storage heaters on low today as well as burning a bucket of smokeless fuel on the fire; house still warming up as went to bed; storage heaters are on low tariff on Economy 7. Electricity prices are up 20% (gas +40%, don’t have supply) on ½ year, +100% on 12 months tomorrow but not going to skimp! Trains back were all on time, leaving LDS at 10:14 and making HEX at 12:40 with 2 changes. Met M at T4m4l at 13:00 – quickly back in the swing. N/D are having a pause this week in the Skype conversation – pity they don’t come out properly! Funds finished -26k on week, leaving position at +508k ytd (+28.8%) gross, +461k net. All indices are now down on year with ftse 100 -6.7%, ftse 250 -26.9%, dow -21.0%, nasdaq tech -32.4%, bitcoin minus -58.2%. Fierce bear markets everywhere now with UK stocks especially undermined by reckless mini-budget of Kwarteng/Truss. Don’t think Labour would be much better as they still have the same insane energy policy. The west is teetering on the edge of a serious decline with its religion of net zero: there is a gradual rise in temperature but we can adapt: there is no climate emergency and there’s certainly not the natural resources to provide decarbonisation of power supplies by 2050. Yet the west is doubling down on intermittent renewables, biomass in the form of burning wood and expensive electric cars. The west will become deindustrialised and poorer on current trends. The BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa, plus recent additions) who only pay lip service to net zero are going to dominate the world order if current trends continue. Had been buying some UK domestic stocks like housebuilders but have liquidated most of these in the dead-cat bounce today and hold 122k cash of which 1/4 in $. Looking at tech stocks (Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, etc) through investment trusts with their shares now at discount of c15% to portfolio value and oil/gas (again!) at the moment particularly those with a $ component; the £ and € are toxic for the foreseeable future.

September 29th: maximum 13C, minimum 10C, light S, cloudy, light rain. Music extravaganza trip finished in style with La Traviata in opening night for Opera North’s new season. Train from KGX-LDS at 13:03 was cancelled so caught 13:30 NCL train, getting off at DON to change for LDS. Get £18 refund for cancellation so that brings cost for whole trip down to £60 but was an hour late into my hotel at 16:30. Ibis Styles is ideal for the opera as it’s only 200m from the theatre; quite a classy hotel, one I stayed in last time, the skyscraper, is budget but today’s choice was reasonable at £79 including breakfast. Started in Howard Assembly Rooms for welcome reception (rw) and handing over of complimentary ticket for dress circle, front row. La Traviata by Verdi is a well-known opera and was delivered in classical style, leaving Orpheus and Orfeo as presumably their more experimental productions. Almost every seat had been sold. Alison Langer as lead role Violetta sang beautifully and powerfully, mastering the crescendos with absolute certainty. She also had good acting ability and that undefinable stage presence. It’s a sad story as Violetta moves from a casual care-free life in Paris in Act 1 to her deathbed in Act 3, where she dies of TB at the end, having a brief spell of joy as the pain goes as the body starts to close down: very poignant! Alfredo, played by Nico Darmanin, was her lover. Her maid was played by Amy Payne, who was in the ON Chorus and sang a few folk songs to me in the lockdown over Zoom, in a scheme to raise some money. I see the same production in TR at NCL in a few weeks, where I also get a complimentary ticket. The conductor was Jonathan Webb. Reception continued in the 2 intervals and post-performance. Attended all; had some interesting conversations with ON staff including the ON Education overseer who remembered well (and fondly) the BAF opera, with which they assisted. Retired to hotel for really good sleep: dreaming of all the excitements of the past 6 days: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

Wildlife noted on travels: a Kestrel at Holme Fen, single Red Kite at Little Ponton and Stubton (29/9) and a Buzzard at Saxton (30/9), using Google Maps to locate where the bird was seen.

September 28th: maximum 14C, minimum 8C, light SW, sunny intervals and showers. Made Richmond Park for walk around Pembroke Lodge with daughter; very good exercise and saw 14 Red Deer, including a massive stag. No raptors seen. We all went for meal at Persian Restaurant Sofreh in New Malden http://www.sofrehrestaurant.com/ from 18:00-20:00, owned by Iman, Mehdi’s brother-in-law; had lamb kebab and plenty of salad, mint tea, no alcohol! Was a lovely occasion. So visit has been really good in cementing relations with all I hold dear!! Left off funds position from yesterday as didn’t want to sully a brilliant day. Minus 17k on wtd but panic has been so bad, could have been much worse. Will leave my take on it all to the weekend but am fairly fully invested so riding out the storm. 2moro it’s up early to wave goodbye to granddaughters as they go to school and then up to Leeds for La Traviata and receptions at ON, staying overnight in Ibis b4 return to HEX next day. Next trip is to Dartmouth in Devon for elder sister’s party in a weekend in late October; adding 3 nites midweek at Ness House for £450 to return to my home town of Teignmouth, where I was brought up. Got super off-peak rail travel for £170 via London; travelling down with son and daughter and granddaughters on last leg from PAD. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

September 27th: maximum 14C, minimum 10C, light NW, cloudy, some heavy showers. Went for walk around Isabella Plantation in Richmond Park with daughter and dog late morning; good exercise and did see 4 Red Deer, 6 Grey Squirrel, 2 Fox, 50 Ring-necked Parakeet, 2 adult Mute Swan, 6 Greenfinch. Total for bird-types was 17. In addition a Tawny Owl was called on edge of Park at 23:00 yesterday. Made WAT from NBT in afternoon, moving into Wagamama for refreshments, including chilli chicken and rw; joined by superb company, delighted that we could meet under such pressure!! Concert followed at RFH sitting next to son. What a performance of Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique by Aurora under Nicholas Collon conductor with Matthew Baynton as presenter! The performing by heart does do more for the piece than just an intellectual feat: it gives a spontaneity and deeper understanding that brings the music alive. All 5 movements came across well but thought the March to the Scaffold was brilliant and the Dream of a Sabbath Night to close was sensational, particularly the ending. So another triumph for Aurora and Collon’s designs and implementations. Whole orchestra played brilliantly and gr8 2c someone on front of stage!! Good-sized audience, mainly young, gave a deserved raucous standing ovation. Had chat with son afterwards, caught train WAT-NBT and picked up by daughter as not too late. What a marvellous day: xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

September 26th: maximum 14C, minimum 7C, light NW, cloudy, some showers, one heavy. Made move from WGC to NBT, getting 13:03 bus Welwyn to WGC, 13:52 fast train to FPK, tube to VXH, suburban train to NBT, arriving at 15:08. Really enjoyed stay at son’s!! So now with 2 lively granddaughters, daughter and son-in-law. He starts work with Balyasny Asset Management in mid-October in London, moving to Dubai in December with family joining him in March. BAM was founded by a Ukrainian emigrant some years ago: Dmitry Balyasny plus 2 others in Chicago in 2001. So ex-Gazprom but still with some eastern bias! Overlooked in current debate on the dismal £ is the fact that we have a massive 8% of GDP deficit in our Balance of Payments with the rest of the world: we are living way beyond our means: Kwarteng’s budget did nothing to resolve this problem directly, though the fall in £ will be a help in that it encourages exports and discourages imports. So really looking forward to tomorrow!! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

September 25th: maximum 16C, minimum 11C, light NW, sunny intervals, dry. Went for walk from 12::00-13:30 in meadows on way to Codicote – many Red Kite floating around, say 10, 2 Common Buzzard and a young Kestrel, plus a Grey Heron, a Green Woodpecker, a Nuthatch in total of 16 bird-types. We had roast lunch at the White Horse, roast beef and Eton mess for me; we’re minded to have Xmas lunch here with myself staying with son in Welwyn and daughter’s family coming over from Kingston for the day; saves on cooking! Today made Wigmore Hall in evening for piano concert by Igor Levit, a Russian who’s lived in Germany for quite a while. He played 11 Chorale Preludes by Johannes Brahms, Variations on a Folk Song by Fred Hersch (b.1955), Tristan und Isolde Prelude (transcribed by Zoltán Kocsis) by Richard Wagner, Piano Sonata in B minor S178 by Franz Liszt. The Brahms sounded rather organ-like. The folk song was Shenandoah and the background was the Shakers in America: very evocative and many contrasts, enjoyable. The Wagner featured the well-known Tristan chord as the move away from tonality began. Rather novelly the Wagner ran straight into the Liszt, with no gap, and we had a very robust performance of the sonata, with slow soft patches punctuated by tremendous force in rapidly executed chords: vintage Liszt. My first visit to Wigmore Hall – friendly, enthusiastic audience and staff. We came back through Oxford Circus, Finsbury Park and Welwyn Garden City to Welwyn. An excellent day and quite active, walked about 13km. We had an encore, a Schumann sonata finale. Igor did initially threaten a 22-hour piece! 2moro is change-over day! No alcohol so far on this trip! xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

September 24th: maximum 17C, minimum 8C, light NE, sunny intervals, few light showers. Down to London arriving KGX at 18:46, where met son outside Nero; we went to Granary Square for good meal, £89 all in, part of new KGX complex, joining onto Kings Place. Then back to Welwyn GC by train and taxi to flat in Welwyn. Flat is so much improved and kempt – gr8 2 c! 2moro it’s walk, lunch at pub in Welwyn and then trip to Wigmore for concert. xxxxx XXX!!!!!! Only raptor noticed from train was a Kestrel at Offord Cluny at 18:00.

Helping investments last week was an update from RKH on their Falklands adventure with their Israeli partners Navitas:

Sea Lion Update: Navitas Transaction Completion [23 September 2022]

Rockhopper Exploration plc (AIM: RKH), the oil and gas exploration and production company with key interests in the North Falkland Basin, is pleased to announce that, further to the signing of definitive documentation as announced on 19 April 2022, the transaction enabling Harbour Energy plc ("Harbour") to exit and Navitas Petroleum LP through its UK subsidiary ("Navitas") to enter the North Falkland Basin with a 65% stake in, and operatorship of, all of Rockhopper's North Falkland Basin licences (the "Transaction"), has completed.

Samuel Moody, CEO, commented: "We are delighted to welcome Navitas to the North Falkland Basin as Operator of the Sea Lion development and wider acreage with all of its associated upside. We also thank both the Falkland Islands Government and Harbour for their work on this Transaction and look forward to working with Navitas to bring Sea Lion to fruition. Sea Lion alone is capable of producing at over 120,000 barrels of oil per day with significant upside. The proven oil and gas in the Falklands has the potential to form a material part of wider UK energy supply in a relatively short time frame, bringing with it huge potential security of supply and financial benefits for all stakeholders." https://www.londonstockexchange.com/news-article/RKH/sea-lion-update/15641063

September 23rd: maximum 16C, minimum 8C, light SW, sunny, few light showers. Have got car back – looks immaculate – was ready at 15:00; was walking in but had done 1.5km when picked up by Rotarian BM who took me to Loughbrow Park – big saving as didn’t have to walk up steep hill in middle but still had to walk down into Hexham and did 10km in day. Paid £350 excess to the garage Steer. In addition to earlier highlight, also had a concert at S with RNS. Got train in and had gr8 meal at MP – pizza piccante, rw and panna cotta – very good to meet friendly staff there again £37 – but back to the dreaded bus replacement for last train so came back on 22:05 service bus 10, which is more direct: the train stations are not aligned with the main roads! Concert called Lindisfarne to align with the Lindisfarne Gospels being deposited at the Laing Gallery was well attended and very atmospheric, particularly John Tavener’s Supernatural Songs, supposedly with a metaphysical basis! Videos were shown of the Holy Island area and the whole piece was very moving, played superbly by the RNS strings and sung in commanding style by Sarah Connolly, mezzo soprano. In the first half we had Hildegard of Bingen Rex Noster Promptus Est, John Tavener The Lamb, Hildegard of Bingen O Virtus Sapiente, Henry Purcell In Nomine in Seven Parts, Arvo Pärt Orient and Occident . All very atmospheric, almost hypnotic and modern and old. xx XX!!! Funds in a traumatic week for markets (falls in major indices of 3 to 5%) were down 20k, less than 1%, but at least the strength of the $ is hammering commodity markets, which should bring down inflation.

Wildlife today comprised 3 types of butterfly at Ordley: 2 Small White, 2 Speckled Wood, 1 Comma; a Mute Swan adult at Merryshields; at Quayside at 17:00: a Robin, an adult Cormorant, 20 Herring Gull, a GBBG 1w, 14 Feral Pigeon, 1 Woodpigeon.

September 22nd: maximum 16C, minimum 8C, moderate SW, cloudy morning, rain afternoon and early evening; just 1/2 bucket smokeless coal today, house is warm, electricity bill for last 3.5 weeks is £94 with storage heaters all off. Completed processing French material from 20/8-27/8 (with 25/8 Montenvers upland shrubs) so will give summary and totals tomorrow. Then moving onto Black Kite tour in study area in late July-early August.

Added Mike’s ultimate paper last Saturday to our website:

Heather, Michael, & Rossiter, Nick, Whitehead’s ‘Big Science’ of Process, Critical Edition of Whitehead Conference: Whitehead’s Harvard Lectures, 1925–1927, Virtual conference: 16–17 September 2022 (2022). pdf.

Battling to the end! Had long reply from his brother to my condolences saying that our research kept him going. There is likely to be a memorial service as Mike has left his body to medicine; would like to give a tribute there. Also posted on ANPA Chat and a number of colleagues have expressed their sorrow. Think I ought to add a picture of Mike to our website.

Not a very active day, feeling sad; had chat with son on FB video about this weekend, maybe Rotunda for dinner on Saturday and a walk and a pub at Welwyn on Sunday, b4 Wigmore. Gr8 to firm up arrangements for next Tuesday with the gorgeous one: xx XX!! Bye most gorgeous one. xxxxx XXX!!!!!!

September 21st: maximum 18C, minimum 13C, light W breeze, sunny, warm, dry; just 1/2 bucket smokeless coal today, house is warm. Walked in again from 13:40-15:00, 1 hour 20 min seems to be predictable in dry weather. Made QH4s4ll (tuna, very nice staff and atmosphere), library for another read of M’s latest paper, G4g4t with B/J/S, so pleased to meet B again; he’s been told to stay in but it’s his raison d'être! We had a gr8 chat, then caught a taxi back to ‘Shire, £10 + £2 tip; that’s my 4th, total £53, hiring a car would have cost at least £500 for the 9 days. No news from repair shop: let’s hope that’s good news! May need to walk in to collect car on Friday, we’ll see; would be jit 4 RNS on Friday nite and trip S on Saturday afternoon. Will write 2moro: xx XX!! Worked hard in evening on Montenvers 25/8 piccies from mountain railway trip to the glacier; some stunning mountains, 1 butterfly, still to do the conserved meadow. Will be at home 2moro all day and nite! Wildlife on walk comprised: 2 Small White at Ordley; at Letah Wood: 1 singing Woodpigeon, 2 Nuthatch, 1 Starling, with butterflies: 1 Small White, 1 Red Admiral; at Loughbrow: 1 singing Woodpigeon, 1 juvenile Common Buzzard, 1 Nuthatch with 1 butterfly, a Speckled Wood.

Just heard at 00:34 22/9 the tragic news on my lifelong collaborator from the 1970s to now in over 250 research papers, Mike Heather:

Dear Nick, Very sorry to report that Michael had a stroke on Sunday and sadly passed away on Tuesday [20/9]. Regards, Noel [his brother]

Michael had sent me his last paper only last week and had presented it on Saturday through Zoom to a select group of Whitehead scholars in California. He’s been ill for some time with Long Covid and has had the near impossible task of caring for his wife who has dementia. He was a little older than me. He retired to Totnes, Devon, where he was a churchwarden. Will write a more substantial tribute on our work together.

September 20th: maximum 18C, minimum 9C, light NW breeze, dull, warmer, short sunny intervals, almost dry; just 3/4 bucket smokeless coal today, house is warm. ‘Phoned accident repairer today and they said they needed one extra part, damaged at the back of the grill, which should arrive tomorrow, enabling completion on Thursday and delivery back to me on Friday. Let’s hope so: that’s 5 working days on their counting (4-8 days was original estimate) as transfer days don’t count! Caught up on some records, processing piccies for Argentière on 24/8, leaving just one day to do for the French Alps trip at Montenvers on 25/8. Started replacing downstairs loo seat as metal hinges have become loose; would prefer a modern plastic one; dismantling is not easy as wing nuts underneath seized; a very glamorous job! Funds -5k on wtd with markets continuing weak generally. This is the week of big interest rate rises so that obviously has a dampening effect. Planning on walk-in again 2moro morning with bins and camera, keeping fit and looking for raptors! Looking forward to next week as will be much more creative and can forget about not having a car, whatever happens! xx XX!! Wildlife today included: 12 Lesser Redpoll in one flock in field, with butterflies 4 Small White, 1 Red Admiral.

Since 14/9 up to 20/9 no more Black Kite on BirdGuides, but 16 (14 records) more Honey-buzzard (92 in 12 days):

16:05 19/09 European Honey Buzzard Durham Whitburn Coastal Park 16:03 one flew south-west

15:17 19/09 European Honey Buzzard Norfolk Breydon Water RSPB pale morph flew north over North Wall mid-morning; also juvenile Curlew Sandpiper

15:15 19/09 European Honey Buzzard Nottinghamshire Welbeck watchpoint 15:07 adult male again [counted as migrant]

11:16 18/09 European Honey Buzzard Lancashire Chorley 11:02 possible south of M61 between Horwich and Chorley

19:03 17/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Lackford Lakes SWT 16/09 one reportedly flew over Bess's Hide yesterday

13:11 17/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Hornsea 12:48 juvenile flew in off the sea, then headed west inland

10:51 17/09 European Honey Buzzard Nottinghamshire Langford Lowfields RSPB one flew south-east over Phase 1

16:16 16/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Lakenheath Fen RSPB 14:15 one then flew off south-east; also Osprey

14:07 16/09 European Honey Buzzard London Walthamstow Wetlands LWT one reported

13:06 16/09 European Honey Buzzard Buckinghamshire Butler's Cross one flew west over Coombe Hill early afternoon

13:04 16/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point two flew south this morning [follow through from SE England]

13:20 15/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point two flew over this morning [follow through from SE England]

11:56 15/09 European Honey Buzzard Highland Fort William 11:30 one flew SSE

07:47 15/09 European Honey Buzzard Isle of Wight Nansen Hill 07:43 one flew south


September 19th: maximum 15C, minimum 11C, light W breeze, dull, cool, short sunny intervals, dry; just ¼ bucket smokeless coal today, house felt warm. Not really a monarchist: just let it all wash over you: everywhere like a ghost town: not convinced country can afford a day off like this: did a lot of gardening with the hedge trimmer, cutting back ivy, hedges, shrubs everywhere, even the roadside hedge, getting ready for final major tidy-up. So place is looking more kempt! Had 2 butterflies today: 1 Small White, 1 Large White, plus a Swallow to SW and 4 Canada Goose. P did wonders: came to fetch me to take me to G: then when no taxis around at end, took me home: forever indebted! Had gr8 chat with P/A. Will ‘phone garage 2moro to check on progress. Working on Argentière 24/8, finding a previously undetected raptor in piccies from early in session and studying hard the 2 large fritillary butterflies on buddleia in the village. 2moro expecting to remain at home but Wednesday will walk in again to HEX for some company in afternoon (or even hopefully to pick up the car!). Have not run out of any more food items so planning holding-up! xx XX!!

September 18th: maximum 13C, minimum 9C, light N breeze, dull, cool, short sunny intervals, dry; smokeless coal fire lit at 11:00 and kept in all day with 1½ bucket, heating almost whole house, feel like a fireman! Tropical storm Fiona has become a Category 1 Hurricane, threatening Puerto Rico but not the Gulf. A super typhoon Nanmadol (Josie) is affecting parts of Japan but it lost power rapidly as it made landfall. Made good progress on last French trip, sorting piccies for 23/8 at Les Gaillands and Chamonix, including views of the town, Mont Blanc and the glacier. Have almost finished bird compilation for the Alps with 46 types in BirdTrack from 19/8-27/8, including 11 types of raptor; Honey-buzzard were found at 2 sites: Argentière (adult alarm call one day, subsequently family group 3 birds up above wood) and Les Gaillands (female agitated by adult Common Buzzard). Need to compile piccies for 2 days: 24/8 and 25/8. Did have a short walk today from 15:00-17:00 (3.5km) from Juniper to Motag to view 4 of the Shire’s Honey-buzzard sites but none seen. Had 3 Woodlark in flight as singles (1 N, 2 W), maybe dispersing from Slaley Forest to stubble fields to the N, rather than the moorland and sheep walk to the S. Also in total of 23 bird-types had 9 Swallow E, 5 Bullfinch, 5 Siskin, 2 Chiffchaff, 6 Robin, 1 Tawny Owl calling at 19:33. At 16:15 a Sparrowhawk (unsexed, not aged) rose over ridge briefly to N at West Dipton. Just one butterfly was seen: a Small White. 2 Kingfisher were at Hexham on Tyne at 11:00 near road bridge from a rower, with whom had a chat on walk. Received refund from LNER as delay repay from last trip HEX-EAL, getting £108.55 paid into my bank account. Have booked another trip today: HEX-KGX-LDS-HEX in 3 legs of advance singles, costing £77.30 in all! Glad we’ve got a meeting: xx XX!!

September 17th: maximum 13C, minimum 9C, moderate NW breeze, sunny periods, cool generally, coal fire (pre-laid) lit at 23:30 with ½ bucket to raise comfort. Did a lot of reading in morning, catching up on recent nature publications, creating piles for scanning and jettisoning, archiving and straight chuck! Roast beef ready-meal was lunch. Have already run out of eggs and radishes since big shop. Walked in again to Hexham, leaving home at 15:00 and arriving at Hexham Station at 16:31, 6.1km. Not much around: 2 Linnet and 2 Common Buzzard calling at Letah Wood, a Chiffchaff and Nuthatch at Loughbrow, a Red Admiral in Hexham. From train (16:40) spotted 2 Speckled Wood at Ovingham. Newcastle had been playing (1-1 with Bournemouth) so Metro was packed, just able to squeeze into one going to GHD, making S at 17:45 where had tuna sandwich and Americano. Joined reception at 18:30 sharp for good catch-up with N/F and partners and the odd rw. Before the concert, the Orchestra played God Save the King and we had an extensive tribute from AP, with plenty of moist eyes, to LV, who was much loved by RNS and supporters. The concert was dedicated to the memory of Lars Vogt, with a reprint of MO’D tribute in the Guardian in the programme. Concert had 2 main pieces. 1) Beethoven PC4 with American Jeremy Denk as star: he certainly was, playing superbly throughout; liked his feint at an encore, whatever could you do after such a piece, Brahms lullaby! 2) Mozart Mass in C Minor ‘Great’ with RNS Chorus and 4 soloists, including Rachel Redmond who is a local favourite. This was very stirring and grand, really enjoyed its contrasts and power. Walked back to Br4rw4s (old times!) b4 catching last train at 22:38 NCL-HEX, very busy and gr8 to see it running again after all those bus substitutions. At HEX at 23:25 no taxis at Station but picked one up at the rank in town, £12.50, with tip £15. Disturbed to see another Roe Deer on steep hill near my accident scene: this one jumped over a wall with difficulty, it’s a very restricted area for them to escape! So busy day: gr8 to be back at concerts and plenty of exercise with day total of 17,290 steps, 12.1 km! Hoping to get car back on Wednesday or Thursday. Meanwhile, good to keep fit: xx XX!! Just a short local walk planned for Sunday.

Immediate interest from look at recent publications was the British Birds report on Scarce Migrants in 2020, covering Black Kite and Rough-legged Buzzard on pp.384-385, July 2022 BB. Black Kite should of course now be in Rare Breeders (1 mixed pair with Red Kite in Northumberland in 2020) but we’ll pass over that! For Black Kite number of accepted records was 34, 2nd highest on record, thanks to a concentrated arrival between late April and early May. Sussex and Kent produced the highest counts with none north of Yorkshire, so none in Scotland. For 2021 124 were noted on BirdGuides but how many have been accepted is another matter. For 2022 there are 179 sightings on BirdGuides to date. I detect some prejudice in the account (no news there!): any breeding should occur in the deep south of England, not in the wild north, and the trend is surely up, not ‘none’ with 10 per year 1980-1989 and 15 1990-1999 up to 23 per year 2010-2019 and now 34 in 2020. Rough-legged Buzzard had a poor year with just 11 birds in 2020, 2nd lowest on record but its numbers are very variable.

September 16th: maximum 12C, minimum 5C, moderate NW breeze, sunny periods, cool by nighttime, no fire lit as out, house felt quite warm on return at 23:30 from solar infusion during day. An energetic day with no car: 12746 steps, 8.92km, of which 6km was the walk-in from home to Hexham town centre at Eastgate. Walk-in from 13:30-14:50 took 1 hour 20 min with some dawdling looking for raptors of which none seen! Made QHC4s4ll (tuna) and Hexham Fish Bar4m4t (haddock), latter good quality with cost £17.40 including Fentimans original lemonade. Made Library after late lunch, looking at M’s latest writings on Whitehead and raising some questions for him on HL2 (Harvard Letters volume 2). After tea decided to go to Riding Mill early for walk to Tyne, going by 18:56 train after bus failed to turn up. That was a good decision with plenty of interesting birdlife by the River at dusk from 19:05-19:55. Had a flock of sparrow at Ordley at 13:30: 30 Tree Sparrow, 15 House Sparrow. At Riding Mill at dusk in total of 13 bird-types had a Tawny Owl (calling at 19:49, mobbed by Magpie), 2 Dipper (1 at some height, 1 low-down), 3 Goosander (drake, 2 redhead), 35 Swallow (in 2 flocks 22,13 moving SW at dusk), 1 Pink-footed Goose (lone bird low-down to W), 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Bullfinch. Made W4g4s where met D/D at 20:30 4 gr8 chat. They gave me lift home, all the way to Ordley: marvellous!! A Tawny Owl was calling at Ordley at 23:30. 2moro is big day at Sage, another walk-in in afternoon (no bins this time) and then train HEX-NCL 16:56 and Metro NCL-GHD with taxi on final leg back to home after leaving NCL on 22:36. Funds lost Tuesday’s gain with wtd -1k after 5k withdrawals (3k to granddaughter I, 2k to pay off credit cards from summer trips) and sharp falls in world markets (-2 to -5%) on fears that inflation is becoming more entrenched. Ytd is +554k gross, +507k net. Have continued to move out of oil into mining (metals needed for decarbonisation, coal) and UK housebuilders (crashed 50% ytd). Main oil interests are now in the Falklands. Have no short-term debt (or indeed any debt) now. xx XX!!

September 15th: maximum 14C, minimum 7C, light NW, sunny spells, particularly in morning and late afternoon, cool by nighttime, lit fire with intent on full bucket of coal and all internal doors open. Marooned but P came out to fetch me for pub and got taxi back again at 23:30 with Advanced Taxis for £12, £14 with tip. Did lots of catch-up in daytime, now inputting data back to 27/8, even including the Kestrel and Black Kite in France via GPS. Not so many distractions! G4g4s was good with P/A/R and S on, even able to have an extra g as not driving! There was a spin-off for Honey-buzzard survey. Went out locally from 12:00-13:00 and had 2 Honey-buzzard juveniles to SW of local site, up for a minute, quite close together. So that converts 1+ to 2. Feel might add a bit more on walks through the ‘Shire to Hexham; charging lighter Panasonic camera for record shots. Also today at Ordley had 45 Greylag Goose SW at 17:00 (heard well) and 10 mobile Siskin, plus 2 Swallow S and 3 W and a Chiffchaff. Butterflies comprised 2 Red Admiral, 1 Speckled Wood and 6 Small White. Also working today on ANPA paper and M has submitted our paper for this Saturday, as well as presenting it. Marvellous!! Looking forward to seeing the gorgeous one: xx XX!!

September 14th: maximum 16C, minimum 8C, light NW, mostly cloudy, cool feel, fire not lit as still warm from yesterday’s fire, place is reasonably insulated and heat comes out from stove and chimney breast for some time after it’s stopped glowing actively. UAH report on climate for August 2022 has now arrived and is added below. A tropical depression ‘Seven’ is in Hurricane alley: can it rescue the season? Car duly handed over to Steer at 09:55; the 4-8 days does not include today, Wednesday is day 0 and yes no work next Monday so must be at least a week before it’s done. Went to Library at QH in morning and early afternoon with breaks at T4m4l with M/B and G4g4ll with A/L. Was working on ANPA paper, on which plan to spend 1-2 hours a day now that main Honey-buzzard season is over. Got taxi home, Advanced Taxis, from main rank in town: £9.60 rounded up to £12 with tip. Think late nite charges will be higher. Have added 11/9 Prospect Hill to BirdTrack, now working on 13/9 Hexham Tyne Green. 2moro it’s day at home, then P is going to fetch me from Ordley 4 G4g4s but I’m coming back by taxi. Friday I’m planning to walk in to QHC4s4ll, Library until 18:00, supper, bus 20:24 HEX-RM, W4g4s in Riding Mill with D/D, bus RM-HEX 22:57, taxi home. Saturday rather similar except going to Sage by train/Metro for reception and concert. Then Sunday at home throughout. Ordley is 150m asl and Hexham is 64m asl so some sense in walking in and getting taxi back. BAF updates completed: labour of love: xx XX!! Isabella was indeed 6 today: sent her by Moonpig an enormous personalised card and a Unicorn tea-set, and sent her mum 3k, maybe towards school fees! Here she is, blowing the 6 candles out with her big sis 1  2. The brick wall at the back in the piccies is Richmond Park’s with large oak trees towering above.

Another late Black Kite today on BirdGuides, making 5 in September overall:

17:44 14/09 Black Kite Gloucestershire Rodborough Common 17:35 one flew slowly north-east towards Swifts Hill

and 6 more Honey-buzzard, with a SW England feel. Total 76 in 6 days:

22:10 14/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Portland 16:00 pale morph flew in-off the sea at the Bill

20:19 14/09 European Honey Buzzard Devon Saltram 17:55 one flew over

16:00 14/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Abbotsbury Swannery one mid-afternoon then flew north-west

15:40 14/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Lodmoor RSPB dark-morph juvenile flew south over Southdown Avenue

13:04 14/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Portland juvenile flew south past West Cliffs early afternoon

12:24 14/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Lodmoor RSPB 12:10 one flew over


September 13th: maximum 17C, minimum 10C, light NW, sunny all day, fire lit on ½ bucket of coal as cool night. Today was last day with the car for a week so went into Hexham to try and nail final site in core area from 12:20-15:10. Did have a Honey-buzzard female soaring at 12:39 and moving off far to E (emigrating) but no juvenile seen; the persistent occupation of the site indicates young have fledged so putting this down as ‘inferred fledging’, a >0 count! Had a Honey-buzzard juvenile at 13:17 floating low-down over a group of trees at Hexham NE, 2 Common Buzzard adult calling repeatedly at Hermitage and 2 Sparrowhawk (ad male, juvenile female) flying high together at 13:44. Also in total of 19 bird-types had 4 Swallow E, 2 Greenfinch S, 2 LBBG ad W, 77 Mallard, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Nuthatch, 2 LTT. Butterflies comprised 6 types, good for so late in season: 10 Speckled Wood, 6 Small White, 4 Red Admiral, 4 Large White, 3 Small Tortoiseshell, 1 Comma. Made W4bigshop £111 as need provisions for at least a week; bought lots of cleaning materials 4 S and restocked freezer as working well now after defrost. So taking car in at 10:00 2moro to Steer in Hexham for its 4-8 days repair; hope they don’t find any nasties when damage is investigated by stripping the damaged part of the car (grill, back supports, front sensor) as that will make it the top-end of 8 days. Will do some work in QH Library after dropping car off and am meeting M at T4m4l, followed later by G4g4t! Will try to keep social life going with walks, taxis and lifts to cover the 3 miles from Ordley to Hexham and do intend to definitely make the Sage on 17/9; fortunately weather is staying dry; car hire would cost approaching £500 for a week, cannot justify that, have £100 budgeted for taxis. Younger granddaughter Isabella is 6 tomorrow!! Funds are +16k wtd on super day yesterday and a bumpy one today on US inflation not going down as quickly as expected. xx XX to the gorgeous one!!

No Black Kite today on BirdGuides but did have 4 Honey-buzzard (+1 in Hexham!), making total 70 in 5 days:

18:29 13/09 European Honey Buzzard Fife Isle of May one; also 2 Curlew Sandpipers

14:14 13/09 European Honey Buzzard Hampshire Hook-with-Warsash LNR 10:40 one flew south-west

12:39 13/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point 12:38 one flew over

10:04 13/09 European Honey Buzzard Greater Manchester Winter Hill 09:03 dark morph; also 2 Ospreys flew through this morning


Climate update: August 2022 was a warm month, some 0.28C above the long-term average but maybe not as warm as some expected in view of the heat waves across parts of China,. Europe and western North America, associated with an unusually persistent La Niña. The tropics had much more normal temperatures. The detailed report from UAH shows that warming continues at 0.13C per decade. It also observes on past performance that if La Niña declines and we move into an El Niño phase, temperatures might rise at a faster rate as La Niña is the cooling phase. Arctic ice is in in a recovering phase, no longer declining from year to year. Hurricane activity, so beloved as damaging wild weather events to be attributed to climate change by the alarmist folks, has confounded all expert forecasts this year using their pet climate models. It’s been very quiet but there’s still time for some major hurricanes. As of today there have been 3 named storms and 2 hurricanes https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2022_Atlantic_hurricane_season with the 2 hurricanes in early September being Category 1 Danielle and Category 2 Earl, none major which requires Category 3. The climate alarmists are spending much of their time scanning anxiously the ocean between West Africa and Caribbean, praying for a series of major hurricanes to develop in order to maintain their credibility. Limitations of computer modelling in predicting complex system behaviour are all too apparent. Flooding in Pakistan is an example of an extreme monsoon, a persistent La Niña and poor land management (deforestation, forests down to 4.8% of land area): how much can be definitely assigned to climate change is in doubt. Summaries in verbatim of some of the latest reports are below:

Latest Global Temp. Anomaly (August '22: +0.28°C)” https://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures.

The global temperature departure from average in August dropped a bit from July to +0.28 °C (+0.50 °F) above the long-term average, down from +0.36 °C (+0.65 °F) last month. The decline was most prominent in the tropics as the temperature fell there -0.17 °C (-0.31 °F). However, the extratropical warmth during this multi-year La Niña episode is a remarkable feature that has kept the global average near or above zero for most months since commencing in late 2020 and is consistent with a long-term upward trend in global temperature. That trend according to these observations is +0.13 °C per decade since December 1978. The latest values of various El Niño/La Niña indices indicate the La Niña (cold phase of the cycle) is still quite evident and predicted to continue through the NH winter. The influence of La Niñas generally induces cooler temperatures, so that one would expect with its potential demise next year, global temperatures will rise somewhat from where they are now. This is not a prediction, simply an observation based on the past. The latest on the evolution of La Niña and its anticipated diminishment by 2023 is provided by NOAA below.

The planet’s warmest spot, in terms of the monthly departure from average was over western China near Yushu at +4.0 °C (+7.1 °F). Areas of especially warm temperatures compared with average occurred over western N America, western Russia, the north Pacific ocean and a large area from New Zealand eastward almost to South America. The coolest departure from average was near the Ross Sea off of Antarctica at -3.6 °C (-6.4 °F). There were fewer especially cold areas, but eastern Russian and the equatorial-south Pacific were cooler than average. A phenomenon of aliasing is seen in the southern hemisphere between the Antarctic continent and around 50° south latitude. We have seen this before in which a large temperature anomaly rotates around the South Pole and is sampled by the orbits of the satellite in a time-pattern that gives the appearance of warm and cold stripes in short distances.” https://www.nsstc.uah.edu/climate/ August 2022.

ENSO Alert System Status: La Niña is present . La Niña Advisory Equatorial sea surface temperatures (SSTs) are below average across most of the Pacific Ocean. The tropical Pacific atmosphere is consistent with La Niña. La Niña is favoured to continue through Northern Hemisphere winter 2022 with a 91% chance in September 23, November, decreasing to a 54% chance in January/March 2023. Report from ENSO: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions Update prepared by: Climate Prediction Center / NCEP. 12 September 2022” https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/enso_evolution-status-fcsts-web.pdf.

Summer in the Arctic is drawing to a close, and sea ice extent is likely to remain higher than in recent years. Several polynyas have formed poleward of 85 degrees North within the pack as well as areas near the thin ice edge. While some thin ice can still be found in the Northern Sea Route and southern Northwest Passage, both appear to be largely open. The northern deep water Northwest Passage route also appears to be largely open. Antarctic sea ice has remained at record or near-record low extent for the month. Summer in the Arctic is drawing to a close, and sea ice extent is likely to remain higher than in recent years. Several polynyas have formed poleward of 85 degrees North within the pack as well as areas near the thin ice edge. While some thin ice can still be found in the Northern Sea Route and southern Northwest Passage, both appear to be largely open. The northern deep water Northwest Passage route also appears to be largely open. Antarctic sea ice has remained at record or near-record low extent for the month.” http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/ 06/09/2022

On May 23, UKMO issued their own forecast for the 2022 season, predicting an above average season with 18 named storms, 9 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes, with a 70% chance that each of these statistics will fall between 13 and 23, 6 and 12, and 2 and 6, respectively.[17] The following day, NOAA's Climate Prediction Center issued their forecasts for the season, predicting a 65% chance of above-average activity and 25% chance for below-average activity, with 14–21 named storms, 6–10 hurricanes, and 3–6 major hurricanes [18]” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2022_Atlantic_hurricane_season.“The expanse of ocean between Africa and the Caribbean Sea has only had two stormless Augusts in more than seven decades of record keeping -- one in 1961 and the other in 1997, said Phil Klotzbach, lead author of Colorado State University’s seasonal storm forecast. August typically is the beginning of the hurricane season’s most-active phase.” https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-08-29/hurricane-alley-hasn-t-been-this-quiet-in-a-quarter-century. “The Atlantic hurricane season has so far confounded forecasts of an active year, with only three named storms so far, none of which were hurricane strength. In fact, until now this August joins 1997 and 1961 in having no named storms.” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/aug/29/weather-tracker-atlantic-hurricane-season-finally-starting-stir. “August was a quiet month for tropical storms. In fact, there hadn’t been a single named storm since early July, and that hasn’t happened in more than 25 years. Yet, just hours into September, Hurricane Danielle developed and was quickly followed by Hurricane Earl. Those two storms are a reminder that the hurricane season is far from over and will likely remain active for several weeks. This season’s storm activity – or lack thereof – has many people wondering just what goes into a hurricane season forecast and what has suppressed this year’s tropical activity thus far. Having a clearer understanding of what it takes to create these seasonal forecasts can help businesses better understand potential risks and make informed decisions from that insight. Most hurricane-season forecasts start by looking at the primary environmental factors, like water temperatures and upper-level winds, that influence tropical activity and just how favourable those factors are for tropical storm development. At a high level, hurricane season forecasts are relatively straightforward to forecast. The job becomes increasingly more complicated when attempting to forecast conditions impacting tropical development several months in advance.” https://www.forbes.com/sites/jimfoerster/2022/09/09/whats-up-with-the-2022-hurricane-season-forecast/?sh=659bd6c36292.

September 12th: maximum 17C, minimum 10C, moderate W, wet start, overcast at lunchtime but sunny by ttime, no fire lit as energetic gardening, out later. Cut front grass and paths and yard, looks much tidier! Made R at B4m4l where pleased to meet latest waitress recruit, l from the G!! A rather sobering talk at R on the desperate state of many people in Hexham E with high deprivation levels and their reliance on food and grocery banks. Put at 10% of the total population of area, can see why major support package for energy bills launched by our new PM ET. Current emergency support at local level is very stretched already and can see major tensions emerging. Made G4g4s with P/A/R for gr8 chat. Sorted more piccies from Les Tines on 21/8 and uploaded piccies from yesterday at Prospect Hill for analysis. Started modifying BAF website with latest updates: xx XX!!

Another bumper day on BirdGuides with 1 Black Kite:

11:07 12/09 Black Kite Fife Out Head one flew west over pines north of river mouth late morning

and many more Honey-buzzard, 15 records, 16 birds (66 migrating birds in last 4 days: 9/9-12/9):

18:33 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Portland one flew east over Avalanche Road this afternoon

18:23 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Orkney Stronsay 18:00 one flew over Holm of Huip viewed from north end of Stronsay

16:35 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Hampshire Aldershot one flew south over Bricksbury Hill; also 1,000+ Swallows flew over

16:31 12/09 European Honey Buzzard West Midlands Bilston probable juvenile flew south late afternoon

15:31 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Kent Herne Bay one flew over Westlands Road late morning

13:43 12/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Brighton one flew east over Waterhall

13:01 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Isle of Wight Nansen Hill 12:58 adult flew south-east

12:33 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Isle of Wight Luccombe 12:30 juvenile flew south

12:18 12/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Pevensey Bay 11/09 dark-morph juvenile flew east yesterday

12:12 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Alderney Alderney 08:30 one flew over Hammond memorial

11:52 12/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head 11:51 two over Belle Tout; also Pied Flycatcher

11:22 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Isle of Wight Luccombe 11:10 one flew south-west

10:58 12/09 European Honey Buzzard Greater Manchester Winter Hill 08:45 11/09 possible circling low then flew into trees

10:13 12/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Bempton Cliffs RSPB 09:58 one flew west over RAF buildings

08:31 12/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Brighton 16:00 11/09 dark-morph juvenile flew south-west over Patcham yesterday



September 11th: maximum 19C, minimum 15C, light S becoming moderate, much brighter day, dry until 17:00 when light rain arrived on time, fire lit (½ bucket) as felt damp with washing out on gallery. Pretty busy at the moment, completing fieldwork for Honey-buzzard, compiling the many Honey-buzzard emigrating at the moment nationally, and keeping up to date on own BirdTrack records, including those from the French and Crete trips. A juvenile Barn Owl out hunting in daylight at 14:00 on road Newbiggin-Ordley with Chiffchaff and 2 Speckled Wood in field area later. Earlier from 11:00-13:45 made Prospect Hill where had a very good haul of interesting species. Top of list was Woodlark, not yet seen this year but masses of suitable habitat in Healey/Dipton Wood area. Had total of 17 on stubble on E side of the Hill, in small groups of 2, 5, 2, 2, 3, 3, flying low over the ground. So it appears we have a thriving local population, maybe 6 pairs from today’s sightings alone. Main aim was Honey-buzzard where had a female up at 11:36 checking the area 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10, joined up in the air by 2 juvenile at 11:49; she emigrated at 11:52, soaring higher and higher into the sky and moving S 11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18  19  20 (12119). Had another juvenile Honey-buzzard at Prospect Hill on N side at 12:51 floating over area. Common Buzzard comprised 3 birds (ad, 2 juv) up together at Dipton Foot at 11:41 and 2 (ad, juv) calling at Prospect Hill at 11:55. Two Kestrel juveniles were hunting over Prospect Hill from time to time. So in day had 4 types of raptor – 11 birds. In total of 23 bird-types also had 12 Linnet, 5 Goldfinch, 2 Yellowhammer, 1 Treecreeper, 25 House Martin S, 29 feeding Swallow migrants, 10 Chaffinch, 1 Chiffchaff. Butterflies comprised 5 types: Speckled Wood 17, Small White 8, Large White 5, Red Admiral 4, Comma 1. Made G4g4s with R 4 gr8 chat! Delighted to receive further input: xx XX!! Only .one outstanding Honey-buzzard site in core area now: Hexham Hermitage which will try and nail on Tuesday, forecast to be sunny. 13/14 sites in core area, ‘Shire and Tyne Valley W, have fledged young this year with just Hexham outcome not known. Had good chat with son on FB video – he’s so much more efficient and sociable now.

No Black Kite but good showing for Honey-buzzard on BirdGuides of 19 records, 22 birds, with notable 4 over Beachy Head:

21:50 11/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Iford Brooks10:00 one flew over

19:19 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Lancashire Winter Hill 12:38 juvenile circled low over Gale Brook Plantation between 12:30 and 12:38 then dropped into nearby woodland as viewed from Scout Road

19:15 11/09 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Barden Moor probable flew south-east this evening

19:14 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Gloucestershire Dursley 19:08 juvenile flew east over Stinchcombe Hill towards Uley

17:55 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Hertfordshire Rickmansworth 15:00 one flew high south-east

17:14 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Portland 14:10 one flew over Thumb Lane mid-afternoon

16:40 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Wyke Down one flew over this afternoon

15:37 11/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head four flew over today; also Pied Flycatcher and 2 Common Redstarts

15:03 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Portland 15:00 one flew east over centre of Isle of Portland viewed from Weston

14:28 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Hampshire Romsey 14:10 juvenile flew low south-west over Romsey Abbey

14:01 11/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Kilnsea 14:00 one circling north of Kilnsea although distant

14:00 11/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Spurn YWT one flew south over Humber early afternoon

13:49 11/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex North Chailey 13:25 two juveniles flew south

13:08 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Kent Whitstable one flew high south-west this morning

13:01 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point one flew over

12:40 11/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head three flew over by 12:30

12:39 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Portland one flew south over the Bill early afternoon

11:59 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Kimmeridge one flew east over Smedmore Hill

11:47 11/09 European Honey Buzzard Kent South Foreland juvenile flew west over Wanstone Farm


That's 50 migrating Honey-buzzard in 3 days 9/9-11/9: an accurate reflection of our steadily increasing breeding population!


September 10th: maximum 15C, minimum 11C, light NE, gloomy day, light rain showers, no sun, fire not lit as out. Spent a lot of time on French records from Chamonix area in early part of week, most done now and added yesterday’s visit details to BirdTrack. Pleased with new BirdTrack app, adding a Tawny Owl on the mobile app at Hexham S at 23:10 by clicking on single record, getting location automatically from GPS, fetching the species from a pick list and entering the count; current time is default value for record; could assist greatly in compiling single-records on the go. Made DoW4g4s 4 gr8 chat with D/D! Not entirely happy with Monday week being a bank holiday; certainly popular with some but will delay car repair completion by a day and will also disrupt quite a few business contracts in general relying on tight schedules. Also unhappy with football programme cancellation at such short notice: how much money has been lost by fans in fares and accommodation. Think we close down things far too quickly these days, particularly since the Covid scare. In a similar vein thought cancelling Last Night of the Proms was a big mistake. All these events could be adapted to show respect while still going ahead. Virtue signalling, particularly with other people’s money, is alive and well. Very pleased to hear from someone: xx XX!! Back in the field tomorrow – we’re going to see a little sunshine!

A Black Kite

15:33 10/09 Black Kite East Sussex Brighton one flew west over Patcham mid-afternoon

and quite a few Honey-buzzard reported today on BirdGuides – 13 records, maybe 14 birds:

18:12 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Greater Manchester Elton Reservoir possible flew SSE early afternoon although distant

16:52 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Hampshire Old Basing one flew south

15:03 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Pembrokeshire Strumble Head juvenile flew in off the sea this morning

14:10 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Leicestershire and Rutland Bradgate CP second individual flew north mid-afternoon

14:05 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Leicestershire and Rutland Bradgate CP one drifting high to south mid-afternoon

13:24 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Leicestershire and Rutland Rutland Water 13:17 two reported behind Lagoon 4 from Sandpiper Hide

12:20 10/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Flamborough Head one flew towards South Landing on west side of Old Fall

12:02 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Felixstowe Ferry one flew south over river mouth and continued toward Ramsholt

12:01 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Shingle Street one flew south

10:34 10/09 European Honey Buzzard Kent Knockholt 09:25 one flew over nearby Cudham

10:24 10/09 European Honey Buzzard West Sussex Pagham Harbour LNR one flew north-west over Owl Point

10:05 10/09 European Honey Buzzard West Sussex Selsey Bill one thermalling north as viewed from Oval Field

08:59 10/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Bempton Cliffs RSPB dark morph in off the sea then flew towards Buckton


September 9th: maximum 15C, minimum 13C, light NE, very gloomy day, heavy rain in bursts, no sun, fire lit as damp, using a bucket of coal to air whole house. Here’s wedding group outside Teignmouth Catholic Church 50 years ago, 09/09/1972: l-to-r Peter Burdett (stepfather), Betty Burdett (mother, formerly married to George Friend Rossiter, deceased, in drowning accident 1962), Paul Burton (best man), Brian Nicholas Rossiter (groom), Anna Franceska Makosch (bride, deceased 13/05/2007, Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma), Janet Hampshire (bridesmaid), Marjorie Makosch (mother-in-law, born London), Hanns Joachim Makosch (father-in-law, born Breslau, Prussia, now Wroclaw, Poland). Day was pretty positive: so wet but cleared up mid-afternoon and with cleaner S coming, went to QHC4m4ll followed by rapid exit to Stocksfield Mount from 15:30-17:20 where some low cloud giving occasional spells of dampness but even a bit of sun. Raptors were feeling like flying after enforced restrictions due to the weather and had: a Common Buzzard adult over Hackwood at 15:20; a Honey-buzzard female soaring low-down over Shilford at 15:35 and moving smartly to E at low altitude and disappearing to view at 15:45; 3 Honey-buzzard, a family group of female and 2 juvenile, up at Eltringham at 15:50, some display together 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8 (12118) but female then climbed high and disappeared E, bye-bye kids! (this is the missing site in Tyne Valley W, so great news, full occupation this season); a Red Kite adult, hunting low-down over Eltringham at 16:34; 4 Common Buzzard at the Mount, 2 adult and 2 juvenile, up from time to time. A walker said 2 broods of Sparrowhawk had been raised this year, one in Guessburn, other at E end of Shilford. Plenty of other migrants: 62 House Martin E, 25 Swallow E, 2 Greenfinch S, 9 restless Chaffinch, 1 Dipper S at low altitude (moving rivers!). Total was 20 bird-types, no butterflies. Further positive news was that the car is going in for accident repairs next Wednesday in Hexham for 4-8 days. Finally funds had a good day and good week at +17k overall, moving to new record; have sold some oil shares (North Sea, US) and moved into big miners and even UK housebuilders; impressed by new PM’s style and her stance on energy; have 132k cash. My ISA fund is my biggest but also have a SIPP account started in retirement, putting c9k into it, now worth 45k. It’s all tax-free as a fund but it’s structured in such a way that any access to it incurs marginal tax rates for me and descendants. But it’s tax free if passed on to charities, so in my wishes to Interactive Investor have split the lot 3-ways evenly to Woodland Trust, RNS and BA Festival. Main holdings are RKH (Falklands oil) and the Manchester bonds. xx XX!!

Many Honey-buzzard moving today (besides my 2!), 13 records, 15 birds in all on BirdGuides, many in Yorkshire, just S of the main weather front::

17:23 09/09 European Honey Buzzard Caithness Hilliclay one flew low north-east this afternoon

14:30 09/09 European Honey Buzzard South Yorkshire Orgreave Lagoons 14:28 three (two adults and juvenile) circling overhead

14:06 09/09 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Nether Poppleton 12:29 juvenile flew south-west

11:41 09/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Hornsea Mere 11:40 one flew north-west over Wassand Hide (permit only)

11:11 09/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Flamborough Head 11:10 one flew south over bowling green at South Landing

10:13 09/09 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head 09:20 one flew south out to sea

09:56 09/09 European Honey Buzzard West Sussex Worthing 09:50 juvenile flew south over Boundary Road

09:26 09/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Spurn YWT 09:24 adult male flew south over Middle Camp

09:24 09/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Kilnsea adult male flew south over Kilnsea Wetlands

08:56 09/09 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Long Nab, Burniston 08:52 second individual flew west

07:13 09/09 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Scarborough 06:49 juvenile flew in off the sea and continued south-west over South Cliff Golf Club

07:12 09/09 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Long Nab, Burniston 07:08 juvenile flew in off the sea and continued inland

07:07 09/09 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Filey 07:00 juvenile flew in off the sea at Carr Naze



September 8th: maximum 16C, minimum 13C, light NE, very gloomy day, heavy rain in bursts, no sun, fire lit as damp, using ½ bucket of coal at this time of year. Up to date in September records in BirdTrack and also added Alpine Clough 22/8 from high-up on Mont Blanc via nephew John. Labelled piccies from Argentière 22/8, including 2 Griffon Vulture, many Raven, a Peregrine and a Honey-buzzard. Met M at T4m4l – good catch-up! Later met R/P in G4g4s with A on!! 2moro is a poignant day: 50 years since marriage at Teignmouth Catholic Church in Devon to Anna Makosch.

Here’s some piccies taken around Chamonix by nephew John and posted on our WhatsApp group page Les Tines: 22/8 Mont Blanc (4807m asl) highest mountain in the Alps and Western Europe, Aiguille du Midi, the highest cable car in France, 3842m 1 with Clair, Emily, Ben 2 and Alpine Chough 3; 26/8 Pool champ NR/Matt 4; group photo front views 5, back views 6, chicken emulation 7. Front views from l-to-r show me, nephew John, daughter Emily, his wife Clair, son Ben, niece’s husband Matt, niece Julie, big sis Gill. xx XX!!

No Black Kite from 4/9-8/9 on BirdGuides. Honey-buzzard records on BirdGuides from 4/9-8/9 included one still at Welbeck plus 7 more:

16:40 07/09 European Honey Buzzard Aberdeenshire Cruden Bay one flew north late afternoon

14:47 07/09 European Honey Buzzard Nottinghamshire Welbeck watchpoint 14:40 one flew south; also 2 Ospreys again

13:33 07/09 European Honey Buzzard Norfolk Brancaster Staithe one circled overhead then flew south early afternoon; also Osprey flew east

12:24 07/09 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point one flew over Mont Les Vaux

16:36 04/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Sunk Island 16:25 one flew towards West Farm

12:02 04/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Huntingfield 10:00 one flew south

08:58 04/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Hornsea one flew low south-west offshore between 07:15 and 07:30

08:21 04/09 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Easington juvenile flew in off the sea and appeared to land in Easington


September 7th: maximum 19C, minimum 12C, light S, sunny most of day, veiled at times, no fire this evening as mild. ‘Phone did arrive on time at 12:30, moved all data and most applications using Google’s Cloud and Secure Switch over WiFi from damaged A12 to new A13; new ‘phone has more memory and can handle 5G, not so useful in Ordley where 4G’s the limit! Transferred SIM card from A12 to A13 at 18:30 to make it a true mobile with full connectivity. Got out in afternoon to Hexham High Wood for walk from 15:00 to 16:45. At 15:59 had a family group of 3 Honey-buzzard up in air, comprising a male, a heavy juvenile and a lighter-weight juvenile. They went high together for a few minutes, doing some close-up ‘fondling’ before diving back to the ground. So this is site no. 10 at which fledging noted: 6 in the ‘Shire, 4 in Tyne Valley W. Also in total of 18 bird-types had an adult Red Kite up over fields to W at 15:21 and 2 Common Buzzard juvenile in the main wood at 15:16. Other birds included 12 Siskin, 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Coal Tit, 2 House Martin S. Butterflies comprised 13 Speckled Wood, 4 Small White, 1 Green-veined White. Also had 20 Swallow migrants feeding at Houtley at 14:50 and a Greenfinch in Elvaston yesterday. Finished up in G4g4t where good chat with a few punters. B’s absent – in hospital with complications in his chemo. xx XX!!

September 6th: maximum 21C, minimum 15C, light SE, heavy atmosphere, frequent torrential showers, only a little sunshine, no fire this evening as mild. Downpipe overflowed near back patio door; used knife to cut some leaves away caught at the base and freed it. Decided to catch-up on paper work, compiling 22/8 La Flégère chair-lift trip and 5/9 Slaley Forest. Ag spoon arrived, 340 years old, Charles II, beautiful piece. ‘Phone didn’t – sorry we missed you (DPD) – meaning driver found diversion at Eastgate, Hexham, and b.ggered off. Not out today. Funds wtd +1k after being +10k yesterday: fears, apparently unjustified, of extra windfall tax hit North Sea oilers. Horrified at borrowing to be incurred by capping fuel bills; help should have been targeted at the poor: no incentive to cut usage to match reduced supply: £ crisis here we come! Nice tribute to Lars Vogt by M O’D in Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/music/2022/sep/06/lars-vogt-royal-northern-sinfonia-trust-and-generosity-michael-odonnell. Also wrote to M and bought Whitehead’s volume 2 of his Harvard Lectures to assist with future papers. https://edinburghuniversitypress.com/book-the-harvard-lectures-of-alfred-north-whitehead-1925-1927.html. Shaved a bit of the price to £123 (still new) by using an Amazon bookseller. Hope to see someone soon!! xx XX!!

September 5th: maximum 21C, minimum 15C, moderate SE, very sunny in morning, more veiled later, had been heavy rain for few hours overnight, no fire this evening as out. Completed freezer defrost, took 27 hours! Crows outside looking a bit sated on thawed cast-offs! Very sad to hear of passing of Lars Vogt, aged just 51. https://www.classicfm.com/music-news/lars-vogt-pianist-conductor-dies/. So pleased I went to his last concerts at the Sage on 13/5, 15/5 particularly the latter when he played solo in piano greats series (see below). Also, after meeting pp Linda, shocked to hear of her husband Nick’s cancer. Made R @ B4m4l where much better turnout; talk was on Sunbeams by Annie Mawson, a Cumbrian musical trust, using musical therapy to handle intractable personal situations https://sunbeamsmusic.org/. Lots of members, including myself, gave £10 and in chat afterwards I suggested she contact Opera North for collaborative ventures. Bought new nite-wear, ones I was very fond of with gr8 memories have fallen to bits: xx XX!! Then out to Slaley Forest Viewley for look for Honey-buzzard from 15:40-17:10; found 2 juvenile Honey-buzzard (both into nesting area, a dark-phase at 16:02 flying at height into site from N 1  2  3  4  5 (12117), a pale brown at 16:18), a juvenile Common Buzzard into Honey-buzzard area at 16:39 and an adult Red Kite up at 15:44 and juvenile Red Kite up at 16:01 and 16:40 to NE, probably 2 young raised. So all 6 sites for Honey-buzzard in the ‘Shire reared young: 2x2, 4x1+, still time to find a few more! Also had in total of 13 bird-types a Jay, an LBBG ad, a Bullfinch, 28 Swallow (13 S) and 20 House Martin S. Butterflies comprised 2 Small Tortoiseshell, 1 Small White and mammals were single Hare and Rabbit. Many investors rushing for the door out of the UK today, including myself, new record comfortably set today. Much later made G4g4s with A/R/P for good chat. Expecting new ‘phone tomorrow, a Samsung A13, cost £129 from Currys; replacing A12 a little early as its screen is badly cracked. Also Ag spoon should be arriving. Granddaughters 1 back to school today at Holy Cross, Kingston https://www.holycrossprepschool.co.uk/ . Here’s map of my autosomal DNA origins, covering last 6-8 generations, perhaps 150-200 years.

September 4th: maximum 20C, minimum 15C, light SE, cloudy most of day, brighter at ttime, few showers early morning, no fire this evening as out. Did similar walk to last Sunday along the spine road in Hexhamshire Low Quarter from 12:20-14:55. Not good conditions for raptor searching but quite a good haul: a Common Buzzard juvenile over Linnels at 12:36 briefly joined by a Red Kite adult, wonder if it’s one of the local pair, which seem to have failed this year to raise any young; an adult and juvenile Common Buzzard at Blackhall Mill at 13:36; on the West Dipton ridge to N side from 13:17-13:27, a Common Buzzard juvenile, a dark-phase Honey-buzzard juvenile 1  2  3  4 (12116), different from last week’s, a Red Kite juvenile. Some hirundine passage again with 32 House Martin moving (20 S, 12 SE); 17 Swallow appeared to be resting. Also in total of 25 bird-types had 6 Bullfinch, 3 Chiffchaff, 20 Goldfinch, 2 GBBG ad plus butterflies 4 Speckled Wood, 3 Small White, 2 Green-veined White and mammals: 1 Rabbit, 4 Mole. Had good chat to son on FB video from 17:00-18:00 and cut grass (tranche 2) in rear area next to gate (the Cowslip area!). Made G4g4s 4 gr8 chat with R/D/B/P and A on. Defrosting fridge-freezer overnite: expecting a mini-flood and chucking out of ancient meat/fish! xx XX!!

September 3rd: maximum 20C, minimum 15C, moderate E, cloudy most of day, brighter at lunchtime, few showers in morning and late afternoon, mild in evening, wet at 23:00; lit coal fire for a few hours in evening as felt damp with washing drying inside. Started autumn clear-up in garden, cutting grass area near neighbours. Had gr8 morning’s fieldwork outside house and in immediate vicinity: a large hirundine movement at 12:30 with 45 House Martin and 45 Swallow SE. Then 2 Honey-buzzard were up over a field to SE, a male and a juvenile, feeding in area from 12:39-13:01 intermittently, followed at 13:07 by a juvenile Black Kite 1  2  3  4 moving SW not far above the trees over Dukesfield. So change in weather has kicked off an exodus of summer visitors though stress the Honey-buzzard were not going anywhere today. Butterflies comprised 3 types: Large White 2, Small White 2, Speckled Wood 1. Also 2 Mole.

Brought Honey-buzzard summaries up to date (to 3/9) on home page:

Display period: 24/4- 15/6 20 site (15 male, 10 female: 25 total)

Sitting/Rearing period: 25/6-16.8 7 site (7 male, 2 female: 9 total)

Fledging period: 28/8- 8 site (3 male, 0 female, 10+ juvenile seen (2x2, 6x1+), 0+ juvenile inferred, 13 total)

In core area, have found fledged birds in 5/6 sites in ‘Shire and 3/8 in Tyne Valley W. Really hard work. Surprising that males have predominated in fledging period so far – are they reforming to stay behind to look after the young? It may be that food is scarce – they don’t tend to leave until the success of the brood is guaranteed.

Very concerned about UK’s financial position. We seem to be more like a populist South American banana republic at the moment (Boris’ true legacy) than a proper European democracy (consequence of Brexit, again thank Boris!); can see hyperinflation if people don’t start being more realistic about the coming inevitable decline in living standards brought about by the disastrous net zero ‘fantasy world’ ideology. The poor must be fully protected but everyone else should pay up so there’s an incentive to reduce consumption (such as by improved insulation or reducing waste) and to concentrate minds. Some hope is emerging already in that some businesses are investing heavily in insulation, we are seeing I hope genuine commitment to building many new nuclear power stations and increasing recognition of the need to develop our own gas and oil reserves for some time to come. Also like the idea of renewable energy companies having to invest in their own energy storage systems to cover their intermittency. But have most of funds linked to US$, CA$ or commodities in some respect, to cover against what increasingly looks like an upcoming £ crisis. To recap own funds were +1k on week, +532k gross ytd, +30.2%, +491k net, compared with ftse 100 -1.4%, ftse 250 -19.7%, dow -13.2%, nasdaq tech -25.2%, bitcoin -56.9%, all ytd. xx XX!! Added ANPA 2022 abstract and presentation to our process web site:

Rossiter, Nick, & Heather, Michael, Logic and Emotion: Whiteheads Category of the Ultimate, ANPA 2022, Liverpool University 8-12 August 2022. abstract presentation pdf.


Mike has sadly gone sick again, into hospital but no bed so discharged home. He’s trying to get me to do the presentation for the Whitehead Critical virtual event on 17/9; he quoted me 11am but that’s Pacific Time which corresponds to 7pm BST. Sage opening concert is at 7:30 so have said it will have to be 8am PDT (4pm BST) on 17/9 or on 16/9. The RNS is the prior commitment with reception beforehand! Later M said he would give the talk, 20 min of alluding to the printed paper would be enough! That’s a relief!


From 30th August on BirdGuides, 2 reports of Black Kite:

12:41 03/09 Black Kite West Sussex Steyning 09:50 probable flew over Steyning Roundhill; also 4+ Whinchats and 3 Common Redstarts along Monarch's Way

19:17 02/09 Black Kite Gwent Goldcliff Pools NR 13:20 adult circled over Goldcliff Point and adjacent lagoon for several minutes before being lost to view


From 30th August on BirdGuides, 5 more reports of Honey-buzzard (7 individuals), plus continued records at breeding site Welbeck 1:

15:06 03/09 European Honey Buzzard Guernsey Les Beaucamps 11:56 three drifted over the school late morning

13:03 03/09 European Honey Buzzard Kent Dungeness NNR 12:40 one circled over Long Pits

12:51 03/09 European Honey Buzzard West Sussex Lancing 10:45 one flew east over ringing site by Lancing College

16:20 02/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Levington Creek/Lagoon one in harvested potato field just beyond level crossing at Strattonhall Drift then flew to Morston Hall

11:37 02/09 European Honey Buzzard Suffolk Minsmere RSPB 11:00 one flew south over the Levels


September 2nd: maximum 19C, minimum 13C, light E, sunny most of time with a few cloudy spells, warm; no need to light fire with the solar heating. Took car into Steer at 11:00 for 15 min photography and close-up analysis; bigger job than I expected, will take a week to repair. They prepare an estimate which goes to LV for approval; if granted repairs can begin when parts secured! No way this can be anything other than an insurance repair now, glad I reported it straight-away to LV as keeps all options open. As was in Hexham drove to nearby Tyne Green for raptor work from 11:15-14:00. 2 Common Buzzard juveniles were hunger-calling from the Hermitage at 11:20. Had to wait for more action, all at Hexham NE, from 12:55-13:09 when had a Black Kite juvenile up frequently, often raising flocks of Corvid, and 2 Honey-buzzard juvenile up briefly, one well developed 1  2  3 (12115) and the other not flying long; these birds are attributed to the Beaufront site. Other birds in total of 24 overall included a Kingfisher, a Moorhen, 2 Grey Wagtail, 4 LBBG (3 ad, 1 juv), 6 Long-tailed Tit, 1 Chiffchaff, 10 Swallow, 2 Sand Martin. Butterflies mainly on buddleia were impressive: 9 types: 9 Red Admiral, 7 Speckled Wood, 3 Large White, 2 Small White. 1 Green-veined White, 2 Small Tortoiseshell, 1 Peacock, 1 Comma, 1 Painted Lady; also had a dragonfly: 1 Southern Hawker. Also had single Southern Hawker today at Ordley and Houtley, latter at dusk 20:15. Made DoW4g4s with D/D for great catch-up! And had short Skype session with N/D in morning as had to take car in for the estimate. Funds had an erratic week with bad sentiment in everything, including natural resource stocks on China’s continued nutty zero-Covid policy. Sold a lot of bonds putting some into depressed miners as an inflation/sterling hedge; after being 17k down on Thursday finished 1k up on week (+532k ytd gross) as Bollywood came to the rescue; India’s economy is is good shape and has overtaken the UK in the last few months to become the World’s 6th biggest. Have 116k cash after bond liquidations. London trip is on, all arranged with son and daughter: xx XX!!.

September 1st: maximum 18C, minimum 11C, light E, sunny most of time with a few cloudy spells, warmer; no need to light fire with the solar heating. Back on fieldwork from 15:00-17:30 while S making place look clean and tidy. Made Dipton Wood S where also had views over March Burn. Very hard work; finally caught up with a juvenile Honey-buzzard putting up a large Corvid flock and being heavily mobbed by Rook while hiding in a conifer copse at Dipton Wood S in SE part at 16:14. Saw it (light brown phase) for a second as it flow low into the copse so that’s one second in a 2.5 hours visit (9000 secs!). Also had 2 Common Buzzard juvenile hunger-crying from 15:07-15:21 and a juvenile Kestrel hunting at 15:03, all in SW part of Dipton Wood. Other birds in total of 16 types included 11 House Martin S, 17 Swallow (1 S), 11 Chaffinch, 5 Bullfinch, 2 Chiffchaff. Butterflies comprised 15 Small White, 3 Speckled Wood, 2 Large White. At Ordley had 1 Chiffchaff plus 3 Speckled Wood and 1 Small White butterflies, also 2 Tawny Owl calling at 23:55 when a Rabbit and Brown Hare also seen. Pleasantly surprised how quickly things are moving forward on the car; had a ‘phone call at 08:51 from TT, by 14:00 had booked an appointment at their parent company’s (Steer) Hexham branch for 11 tomorrow for an estimate to be prepared; if LV accept the estimate, we can then go ahead with the repair around middle of month and I can drop the car off at Hexham for potential transfer by them to Chester-le-Street! About to confirm trip to London and Leeds for late in month with 2 concerts assigned with son, on 25/9 (Wigmore) and 27/9 (Southbank) but staying with daughter as well b4 back to ON in Leeds on 29/9 for La Traviata opening nite (free ticket and 3 receptions, as Ag patron). Made QHC4s4l (tuna and salad again), very tasty and good to meet the staff again. Much later made G4g4s with R/P 4 good chat with S on and L in attendance! ! May even see someone soon: xx XX!!

August 31st: maximum 16C, minimum 9C, light NE, cloudy, few light showers, cool, did indeed light coal fire in the evening, nice and cosy! No fieldwork today. Hg in Hexham never came back with an estimate. So took car in for estimate from another local repair firm GR; they came back quickly with estimate of 2.4k, which seemed to include many things not damaged! So given up local firms and back to insurance company LV whose initial choice of repair company, CF in Blaydon, are not handling any new repair jobs (confirmed today); LV said they knew about this – it would have been nice if they had fixed me up with another repairer, sparing me another 20 min hold on phone to them. Now being paired with TT in Chester-le-Street, not holding my breath! It’s a long way but they do come and collect. Did make G4g4t – very quiet! xx XX!!

August 30th: maximum 16C, minimum 8C, light NE, sunny spells, cool when cloudy, might well be lighting coal fire in the evening tomorrow. Fieldwork today was out to Stocksfield Mount from 13:30-15:30, where found in area a Black Kite (not aged) up energetically at Styford at 13:56, a Red Kite juvenile up at Eltringham at 15:11, 2 Honey-buzzard at 2 sites: 2 Honey-buzzard juveniles were at Shilford/Styford E, first one up at 14:53 climbing slowly into sky 1 (12114), second moving N slowly over Tyne at 15:15. A male Honey-buzzard was up over Bywell Cottagebank energetically at 14:32 1  2 and a juvenile was seen flying 3  4 (12113) into the site at 14:39. 3 Common Buzzard at the Mount (adult + 2 juv) from time to time. Also in total of 19 bird-types had 9 House Martin S, 4 Swallow, 2 Chiffchaff. Butterflies comprised: 4 Small White, 4 Speckled Wood, 1 Green-veined white, 1 Small Copper, 1 Red Admiral. Black Kite are hanging on later this year; not sure whether that’s because they bred late or whether they love Northumberland so much! Added Les Tines 26/8 to BirdTrack. Had a Brown Hare on the ‘lawn’ late afternoon! Ordered new railcard for £70 (3 years). Planning trip to London at end of September and surprise, surprise, M wants me to do the presentation mid-month on Zoom to Poland. Had update from Ancestry on autosomal DNA (recent) origins: 51% England and NW Europe, mainly Devon and Somerset, thought it would be higher; 14% Germanic Europe; 10% Sweden and Denmark; 10% Wales; 8% Scotland; 7% Norway. Irish paternal side has been diluted to zero. German/Scandinavian influence is interesting: definitely a northern European slant! I’ve not given a new sample; it’s the scientific analysis that’s changed. Funds -5k on expected bad start to week following Wall Street’s minicrash over our holiday period. Still thinking of someone: xx XX!!

From 15th August on BirdGuides, 2 reports of Black Kite:

08:10 29/08 Black Kite Cornwall Bartinney Downs 15:30 28/08 one flew north yesterday afternoon

18:33 18/08 Black Kite Kent Grove Ferry NNR 15:15 one flew over as viewed from ramp this afternoon

From 15th August on BirdGuides, many more reports of Honey-buzzard (36 individuals), plus continued records at breeding sites Swanton Novers 2 Welbeck 1-2:

18:05 29/08 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Wimborne St Giles17:55 one

17:04 29/08 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Holton Heath one flew east over Keysworth Point this morning

12:01 29/08 European Honey Buzzard Guernsey Pleinmont 11:35 dark-morph juvenile flew over; also Pied Flycatcher

08:00 29/08 European Honey Buzzard Hampshire Hursley 15:28 28/08 one flew south yesterday

13:57 28/08 European Honey Buzzard Lincolnshire Gibraltar Point NNR one flew south between 12:00 and 13:55; also 114 Common Buzzards

12:00 28/08 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point 11:59 one flew over

15:43 27/08 European Honey Buzzard West Sussex Atherington 15:40 one flew east

14:40 27/08 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head 13:00 26/08 two flew ENE yesterday; also 2 Pied Flycatchers still yesterday

10:48 27/08 European Honey Buzzard Fife Inverkeithing 10:00 adult flew west

12:26 26/08 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Eastbourne one flew over Meads early afternoon

11:33 26/08 European Honey Buzzard Jersey Noirmont Point 11:32 one; also Great Egret

11:27 26/08 European Honey Buzzard Essex Mersea Island 25/08 one flew west over golf course yesterday

11:55 24/08 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Wareham 23/08 one at Lower Piddle Valley yesterday

09:20 24/08 European Honey Buzzard Kent Dungeness NNR 09:17 one circling over trapping area

21:42 23/08 European Honey Buzzard Hampshire Gammon's Hill one reported flying south at Beaulieu Avenue, Leigh Park

17:16 23/08 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Weir Wood Reservoir 16:10 female over west end then drifted ESE

14:40 23/08 European Honey Buzzard East Yorkshire Hornsea Mere 13:50 one thermalling over Heslops with 4 Common Buzzards and 5 Marsh Harriers drifted slowly south-west

09:59 23/08 European Honey Buzzard North Yorkshire Long Nab, Burniston 09:53 one flew south-west

09:01 22/08 European Honey Buzzard Essex Woodham Fen EWT 21/08 two reportedly flew south late afternoon yesterday

17:32 21/08 European Honey Buzzard Wiltshire Landford 16:49 two flew west over Beech Grange

14:16 21/08 European Honey Buzzard Norfolk Heacham 14:00 one flew south-west

10:28 20/08 European Honey Buzzard Norfolk Strumpshaw Fen RSPB 10:27 one circling though distant from Reception Hide

21:58 19/08 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head one flew over this morning

17:13 19/08 European Honey Buzzard Guernsey St Martin's 13:56 one flew over Fermain towards St Martin's

12:24 19/08 European Honey Buzzard Dorset Lytchett Bay pale morph flew over south-west

10:59 19/08 European Honey Buzzard Kent Littlestone-on-Sea 10:51 one flew low north-west over Littlestone House

13:38 18/08 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head 13:22 three circling high together

12:42 18/08 European Honey Buzzard East Sussex Beachy Head 11:50 one flew over

09:56 18/08 European Honey Buzzard Kent South Foreland female flew over low towards St Margaret's

18:55 16/08 European Honey Buzzard Kent Sandwich Bay 18:20 one flew north over New Downs

07:08 15/08 European Honey Buzzard Cambridgeshire Holme Fen NNR, Holme 13/08 male in tree on Saturday


August 29th: maximum 17C, minimum 11C, light E, mainly overcast but sun did break through for c30 mins early afternoon.

Here’s piccies (22/8) of spectacular mountains around Mont Blanc 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9, valley at Les Tines 10  11  12  13 and chalet 601 14  15  16  17 at 1080m asl. Here’s Auntie Ann’s funeral brochure for 17/8 front  back. Here’s Sophia and Isabella at Peth Foot, by the Devil’s Water near my house in July (27/7) 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11, and grandchildren and daughter 12  13  14  15  16  17.

Back in the field for local raptor studies today. Walked up spine road of ‘Shire from 11:50-15:30 seeing nothing on outward stretch but then an intense period of action from 13:25-14:28 as the sun threatened to break through and finally did for c30 mins. Had wondered whether the Black Kite would have left by now but still present in aggressive territory-holding mode at Dilston, where adult seen at 13:25 1  2  3  4  5  6  7 (no.3 with Honey-buzzard juvenile) and juvenile Black Kite joining it at 13:38 in brief encounter 8 with the juvenile Honey-buzzard. The Black Kite juvenile was flying strongly out of Swallowship to SW at end at 14:27, probably to forage 9  10  11. Had Honey-buzzard at 3 sites, not including the local site at Ordley where none seen! These 3 sites were: 1) Dotland with male up 1 (12111) giving wader call at 13:52 followed by aggressive circling with an adult Common Buzzard, earlier a juvenile chicken call was heard at 13:35 from the copse into which the male flew; 2) a dark-phase juvenile soaring briefly 1 (12112) to W of Letah Wood at 14:23; 3) a ruddy-phase juvenile up briefly with Black Kite at Swallowship at 13:38 3. Also had 20 bird-types including 2 Tree Sparrow (1 weak flying juvenile 1), 4 agitated Bullfinch, 2 Nuthatch, 27 Swallow (13 S), 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Stock Dove. Besides the birds had 3 Roe Deer feeding in a field, a Common Hawker dragonfly and 3 types of butterfly: 3 Small White, 1 Large White, 1 Speckled Wood. xx XX!! Made G4g4s with good turnout of R/P/A/D/B.

August 28th: maximum 19C, minimum 13C, light E, sunny spells, fresher. Journey EAL-KGX-NCL-HEX went well, train was busy but all on time and had some interesting raptors on the way, including a male Kestrel at Waterford Heath at 13:40, single Common Buzzard and Marsh Harrier at Great Paxton at 14:05, single Red Kite at Biggin (York) at 15:30 and Pilmoor at 15:50, a Common Buzzard at Tollerton at 15:40; so that’s 4 types of raptor on LNER route KGX-NCL. Left for EAL at 11:55 and made HEX at 17:40 so a long day. Went shopping in Co-op convenience at HEX and then had a lovely short walk from home, revelling in the fresh conditions. Was looking for Honey-buzzard juveniles but no sign at this late time of day; did have a strident Tawny Owl later at Ordley, plus a rabbit. Earlier had 20 Lapwing at Blaydon, a Cormorant adult at Ovingham, 2 Little Grebe at Merryshields, 12 Grey Partridge in covey at Hexham S, 1 Jay, 2 Chiffchaff at Ordley. Funds performance last week broadly confirmed at +182k, making +531k ytd gross, +489k ytd net! Did make G where R/P joined G and I, so busy and noisy but lively and chatty, welcomed new bar lass B!! Stimulating evening!! xx XX!! Hoping to catch up 2moro with fieldwork and records.

Summaries Chamonix 19 Aug - 27 Aug 2022:

Birds -- 46 species from 95 records, 7 complete lists, 12 places in Chamonix, France, area from 19 Aug - 27 Aug 2022. Raptors were of 11 types: Common Buzzard 11, Griffon Vulture 10, Honey-buzzard 4, Bearded Vulture 3, Short-toed Eagle 2, Golden Eagle 2, Egyptian Vulture 1, Black Kite 1, Tawny Owl 1, Kestrel 1, Peregrine 1. total 37 birds. Full bird records.

Butterflies15 species, 49 insects, 10 trips, 8 localities, 580-2134m asl: Small White 20, Shepherd’s Fritillary 4, Silver-washed Fritillary 4, Painted Lady 3, Speckled Wood 3, Green-veined White 2, Clouded Yellow 2, Common Blue 2, Geranium Bronze 2, Marbled Ringlet 2, Swallowtail 1, High Brown Fritillary 1, Small Tortoiseshell 1, Small Heath 1, Large White 1. Full butterfly records.

Honey-buzzard were noted at 2 localities: 1) at Argentière at 1252m with adult alarm call on 21/8 as walked towards mature spruce plantation and on 22/8 with a family group of 3 in the air above the tree line close together over the village; 2) at Les Gaillands at 1020m on 23/8 where an adult female left to forage from a dense spruce plantation, in contention with an adult Common Buzzard.

August 27th: maximum 22C, minimum 12C, light E, bright sunshine, fresh. Taxi took us to Gervais Fayet from 10:30-11:10, where had a Common Buzzard hunting on edge of town as drove in, a Swallow, plus 2 Geranium Bronze (on pot plants 1), 2 Small White, 1 Painted Lady, and a Hornet. Then caught 13:00-18:13 Gervais to Paris Gare de Lyon (single Kestrel at Meximieux at 16:00 and Black Kite at Moulins-en-Tonnerrois at 17:30 en route), taxi Gare de Lyon to Gare du Nord €19, €* Paris to St Pancras 20:13-21:45; taxi St Pancras to Ealing, back at 22:40. What a day! Everything went smoothly – 2moro afternoon sees final leg of journey by UG, LNER and NR. Time for bed: xx XX!!

Here’s some piccies taken around Chamonix by nephew John and posted on our WhatsApp group page Les Tines: 22/8 Mont Blanc (4807m asl) highest mountain in the Alps and Western Europe, Aiguille du Midi, the highest cable car in France, 3842m 1 with Clair, Emily, Ben 2 and Alpine Chough 3; 26/8 Pool champ NR/Matt 4; group photo front views 5, back views 6, chicken emulation 7. Front views from l-to-r show me, nephew John, daughter Emily, his wife Clair, son Ben, niece’s husband Matt, niece Julie, big sis Gill.

August 26th: maximum 22C, minimum 12C, light E, cloudy, few sunny intervals, light rain showers, much fresher, little snow fallen today on high ledges on jagged pinnacle 1 above us to E, little below 4,000m asl, autumn approaches! A take it easy day before travel back in one go to London 2moro with taxi taking us to Gervais for €85. Had a local walk for total of 14 bird species, adding 2 Blue Tit, 2 Great Tit, 1 White Wagtail juv 1, 1 Bullfinch calling, to list. Best of all was a Griffon Vulture flying below skyline to W at 14:10 before being lost to sight, no piccies. Took some piccies of the Honey-buzzard nesting area at Argentière 1  2  3  4. Funds finished wtd at +187k with +534k ytd; provisional, need to do a proper balance when back. Matt and I crowned as pool champions of the holiday; I potted the black but shot of the tournament was M’s control of cue ball to keep a break going when snookering ourselves might have set up a loss! Had Skype chat to N/D and Facebook video chat to son; WiFi was stretched a bit but we managed by my turning off my own video. Son said Aurora’s programme for next season is very adventurous! xx XX!!

August 25th: maximum 26C, minimum 15C, light and variable, sunny all day, dry, hot sunshine. Did have more migrant activity today at Les Tines with a Song Thrush at 10:00, a Tree Pipit and Spotted Flycatcher at 18:00, 2 Common Swift and 7 House Martin S at 19:00 and 2 Chiffchaff calling anxiously at 19:30. At Les Tines had a Red Admiral. 7 Raven were over Argentière at 17:50. Weather is due to change with heavy thunderstorms forecast for tomorrow afternoon as a cold front goes through, reducing temperature to 22C max. Should be fun! Midday (until 15:00) went up the railway from Chamonix Mont Blanc station to Montenvers at 1913m asl, close to a number of mountains and glaciers 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15, just below the tree line so some interesting ground vegetation in nearby walks 16  17  18  19  20  21  22  23  24. The station is a popular base for walks 25. Was very busy but enjoyed the lunch up there in the open air, the great views and the meadows. Not many birds up there: 1 Crow, 6 Chaffinch 1, 1 House Sparrow, 2 Crag Martin, and a Common Buzzard on the way up. Had 3 types of butterfly: a Marbled Ringlet 1  2  3, a Small White and a large fritillary (presumed Shepherd’s Fritillary) at height. Funds had another good day with LON:HBR, the UK’s largest indigenous oil and gas producer, reporting its ½ year results; they were spectacular and shares rose 10%. This is my 2nd largest equity investment holding around 36k so now +180k on current 2-week period! Bought a westcountry trefid Ag spoon c1680 (Charles II) for £485 at bimonthly auction of Ag Spoon Club; received the good news from DB by ‘phone while sitting outside the chalet! Received a lovely invite from A&RS to A’s dinner on 27/1; wonder who else might go!! xx XX!!

August 24th: maximum 25C, minimum 14C, light SE breeze, sunny all day, dry, hot sunshine. We (big sis and I) went on chair-lift from Argentière to mountain above tree line 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8 to E at 2134m asl from 12:30-15:00 with walks to glaciers. We walked a little to S and watched the Raven, some 19 seen, flying around the ridges and flattish areas. They were quite tame but didn’t get too close. The Raven rear up from their perches on the boulders for short periods before diving down again; here’s plenty of piccies 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12 . Also had a single Crow, pretty much confirming the count made from our chalet, way below in the valley to S. Had a Tawny Owl calling at 05:10 from W of the chalet on a comfort trip! Also a Collared Dove calling at Les Tines at 10:00 and a Common Buzzard adult calling from the station at 12:30. In Argentière village at 1252m asl had 1 Serin, 1 Crag Martin, 7 House Sparrow, plus butterflies single Small Tortoiseshell, Green-veined White, Small White, Swallowtail 1  2, High Brown Fritillary 3  4 (with Swallowtail 5  6  7  8), Silver-washed Fritillary (with High Brown 9). While watching Argentière from Les Tines from 11:50-12:30 had a Griffon Vulture 1  2  3  4  5 and a Short-toed Eagle 1  2 soaring high over the hillside 13. A black Red Squirrel was at Les Tines station. What an interesting day! Had some useful news today from the markets:

Successful arbitration outcome. https://www.londonstockexchange.com/news-article/RKH/successful-arbitration-outcome/15599399. Rockhopper Exploration plc (AIM: RKH), the oil & gas company with key assets in the North Falkland Basin, is pleased to provide the following update on its ICSID arbitration with the Republic of Italy:

Successful arbitration award

Compensation of EUR 190mm. Plus interest at EURIBOR + 4%, compounded annually from 29 January 2016 until time of payment

The arbitration panel unanimously held that Italy had breached its obligations under the Energy Charter Treaty entitling Rockhopper to compensation. The award is final and binding on the parties. Italy has 120 days to apply for an annulment of the award, which can only be annulled in limited circumstances. Under a legal agreement with the Falkland Island Government Rockhopper is prevented from making any form of distribution.

Samuel Moody, CEO commented: 'We are delighted to have won our case. A huge amount of work has been involved since we acquired Mediterranean Oil & Gas Plc in 2014 and commenced the Arbitration in 2017. I would like to pay tribute to our team for their dedication over such a long period. We will update the market in due course once we have been able to analyse fully the results of the arbitration and its full, very positive financial implications for Rockhopper. This positive milestone builds on our recent transaction with Navitas and while work still needs to be done on Sea Lion, we believe after collection of the award, it will make a material contribution towards our share of the development costs.'

RKH is my single biggest investment, holding 2.73m shares or about 0.47% of the entire business. I sold a few today. Gain in funds over last 2-week period is now +147k, comfortably at new record, expect some volatility! xx XX!!

August 23rd: maximum 24C, minimum 13C, light and variable, sunny all day, dry, hot sunshine. Made Les Gaillands rocks from 12:30-18:00 lying 2km south of Chamonix, a rocky area with extensive ropes and instructors to help novices gain experience. Niece and nephew were there all afternoon, doing marvellously on the climbs, which are challenging. We went down by train, had lunch there and went back to Chamonix by bus for supper at a piazza place; quite reasonable at €16 a head with 4 glace later costing €16 in all. Everywhere was very busy, full of tanned athletic looking types, mostly in their 30s and 40s. Had 5 Mallard and 3 Coot on a local lake plus 4 Chaffinch, 3 House Sparrow, 2 Crow. Raptors comprised a Honey-buzzard female and Common Buzzard adult in brief but vigorous combat at 17:28 (both together, blurred 1; Common Buzzard adult 2, Honey-buzzard female 3) as the Honey-buzzard left to forage from a dense spruce plantation with scattered birch at the base of a forested hillside near Les Gaillands at 1020m asl (12152); here’s shots of habitat taken this day 4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12. Total was just 7 bird-types here with butterflies: 1 Speckled Wood, 3 Small White, 1 Silver-washed Fritillary, plus moths: 1 Humming-bird Hawk-moth, 1 Oak Eggar larva 1. Had some good views of Mont Blanc peaks 1  2  3, including at sunset 4 and the glacier 5  6. At dusk at Chamonix Aiguille Du Midi town 1  2  3 (from where you can connect to chair-lift to summit) had 17 Crag Martin overhead, a Feral Pigeon, a Black Woodpecker in flight. Much earlier at 09:00 added a Blackbird to the list in Les Tines, with a Chaffinch and single Speckled Wood also seen. Funds are +6k wtd, recovering last week’s losses as natural resource gains start to outweigh Bollywood losses. The energy crisis, predicted last year here, is due to long-term disastrous planning by the EU and the UK; there’s no way out now. Ending the Russian sanctions might help but what signal would that send to Putin and would he even reciprocate? For the medium term increasing gas/oil supplies from friendly regions, increasing gas storage and putting in a crash nuclear power programme are essential (proven technologies) while we work out how to integrate unreliable renewables into a stable grid at an affordable cost (unproven technology at scale). Simple isn’t it!! But the immediate future looks very bleak and that has one great benefit: it will focus minds and hopefully get us away from the dreadful group-think that is at the heart of the problem: net zero! WiFi at chalet is slow and jerky! Think someone gorgeous would love it here: xx XX!!

August 22nd: maximum 22C, minimum 11C, light and variable, sunny all morning, cloudier afternoon, hot sunshine. Good views of Mont Blanc 1a early on from the ranch. Made the chair lift (schemes 1b  1c) with big sis and niece and partner to La Flégère from 12:40-14:30, up above the tree line 1  2  3  4  5 and with abundant ski slopes and views up to mountains above 6  7  8, across the valley towards Mont Blanc 9  10  11  12  13, glacier 14 and Chamonix below 15. Views were breathtaking from the top. This is at 1900m asl. Nephew and family took lift to near Mont Blanc, 3842m asl up in the snow 1. We walked almost to Chamonix to get the lift by the side of the river seeing a Robin 16, a Humming-bird Hawk-moth 17, a Clouded Yellow, a Painted Lady and 5 Small White. Cost was €34 for two on the lift. Must say descent by lift at start was exciting: rapid pick up in speed on level and then like going over the crest of a waterfall, directly down. Not many birds around; nephew had 2 Alpine Chough right at the top 3; at 3842m and more (c15) at the base immediately below. We had a Water Pipit 18, 5 nesting Crag Martin 19  20 and a brood of Ptarmigan in a copse 21  22  23 above the tree line at 1930m asl, plus some butterflies: 3 Shepherd’s Fritillary 24  25, 1 Marbled Ringlet 26, 1 Common Blue. No raptors. Later back at the chalet from 17:20-19:00 noticed many Raven in family groups 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 and with Honey-buzzard 11 practising high up over Argentière to NE. Looked like c18 in total with raptors up including a family group of Honey-buzzard together (male, female, juvenile) up above the tree-line (12151 group 1 2), 2 Griffon Vulture 1  2, 1 male Peregrine Falcon 1 . A lot of activity! Had a Grey Heron at Les Tines in evening (up to 20:00) plus during the day a Mistle Thrush, a Serin, a Chiffchaff, a Jay, 4 Magpie, 4 Crow, 2 Green Woodpecker and 6 Crag Martin. xx XX!!

August 21st: maximum 22C, minimum 11C, light and variable, sunny all day with hot sunshine. Here’s piccies (21/8) of spectacular mountains around Mont Blanc 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9, valley at Les Tines 10  11  12  13 and chalet 601 14  15  16  17 at 1080m asl. Went for walk in afternoon around Les Tines, along the ‘white’ stream which runs through it, ice melt from the glaciers towering above. Had 6 Griffon Vulture (as 4+2 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10) over the tops of the valley sides 2000m asl, along with a family group of 2 Golden Eagle (ad 1, juv), 1 Egyptian Vulture adult 1  2, 3 Bearded Vulture (1  2 ad, 2 juv), plus in the valley below, altitude 1080m asl, 2 Common Buzzard adult calling and an adult Honey-buzzard alarm call as we walked in well-managed mature spruce woodland to NE of Tines (towards Argentière). Also had 3 Green Woodpecker, 2 Crag Martin, 2 Serin, plus a Nuthatch, a Chiffchaff calling, a female/juv Blackcap, 6 Chaffinch, 7 House Sparrow, 1 Robin, 4 Magpie and 6 Carrion Crow. Butterflies comprised single Small Heath 1, Clouded Yellow, Speckled Wood 1, Common Blue, Large White, Green-veined White, Painted Lady, 2 Silver-washed Fritillary, 8 Small White (9 types), plus a Humming-bird Hawk-moth. So well underway, have placed a large grocery order with a store in Chamonix for delivery tomorrow. We stopped at a restaurant in N of Les Tines, cost €10 for a beer! C’est la vie! 2moro it’s a chair-lift to get up high (1900m asl) and maybe trip to Chamonix. xx XX!! Funds last week were -6k but no proper balance done while away: gains in natural resources were outbalanced by bad week for Bollywood.

August 20th: maximum 23C, minimum 16C, light and variable, sunny spells with hot sunshine, shower as arrived in Les Tines, where we are staying. Had fantastic views of Mont Blanc and its glaciers as passed through Chamonix on train. Scenery of Jura Mountains was spectacular as approached St Gervais Fayet from Paris Gare de Lyon, which left at 10:29, arriving at Gervais at 15:30 :where changed to smaller train for Chamonix and Les Tines at 16:29. Chalet is good sized, holding 8 people: me, elder sis, niece and partner, nephew and partner and 2 kids aged 10-12. Had 2 Common Buzzard in Jura at Annemasse, near Swiss border, at 14:20, plus 3 at Gervais (family group of 1 ad, 2 juv 1) with a juvenile Short-toed Eagle gliding along the ridge above 1  2  3, around 16:00. Will sleep well tonight: good dreams : xx XX!!!

August 19th: maximum 24C, minimum 16C, light W breeze, dull, few spots of rain. Had 4 bird species in Camden from 06:00-09:00: Feral Pigeon 7, Ring-necked Parakeet 4, Magpie, 2, Herring Gull 2 ad, most in Cartwright Square where stayed. Arrived in style in Paris on €* in premium class, getting a good lunch with rw on the train. See you can also go to Disneyland, Brussels and Amsterdam. Got taxi from Gare du Nord to Hotel Parisianer near Gare du Lyon (€20). Checked into hotel, paying €370 for 2 rooms overnight and breakfast: well equipped hotel, very close to the station for tomorrow’s trek to Tines and Chamonix. Had 5 bird-species at Gare de Lyon 2 Herring Gull adult, 4 Carrion Crow, 12 Feral Pigeon, 2 Magpie, 2 House Sparrow. Had supper in a bar near the station. Thinking of someone: xx XX!!

August 18th: maximum 26C, minimum 19C, light W breeze, some sunny intervals, dry, humid. Went for walk with big sis in Pitshanger Park from 10:50-12:50, seeing a single adult Red Kite 1 in moult over at 11:18, 12:11 and 12:18. Also had a Swift W, 17 Ring-necked Parakeet, and a Brown Rat. Trees were interesting with oak surviving drought best and birch, rowan, elder, struggling. River Brent was quite high. Then we went into Camden by taxi for £40 in amazingly light traffic, to € Hotel near STP (£230 for 2 rooms), ready for €star tomorrow morning to Paris, where staying 1 nite! Had classy Italian meal at Albertinis near STP for £89, very quiet with strikes, which include UG 2moro. xx XX!!

August 17th: maximum 24C, minimum 18C, light NE breeze, overcast and humid morning followed by torrential rain in afternoon and early evening, decisively ending dry spell down here; ground is very parched and trees are wilting but hopefully recovery now underway. Funeral of Lena Ann Tapper (2/1/1928-24/7/2022), our matriarch, was well organised and very moving, with lovely eulogies from her 4 children (our first cousins, we were all there), her eldest son David coming over from Australia and her daughter Alexandra (Za) from South Africa. Reception was held at Froxfield Hall and did have good catch-up with family. A mixture of humour and tears got us through the day with c90 attending the funeral. Her second son Steve has produced an informative photo album of which I’m going to get a copy from the printers. Her youngest son Tim is a little wild with plenty of choice terminology, from Devon farmyards, in his bit in the church! Plenty of raptors up as stayed dry W of London getting family groups of 4 Red Kite at Froxfield and Chieveley and of 4 Common Buzzard at Froxfield, plus 18 more Red Kite (total 6 sites), 2 Common Buzzard (total 2 sites), 2 Kestrel (total 2 sites), noted along M4 and M25. No suggestion of Black Kite in any of the sightings. Had a Tawny Owl in Ealing last night at 22:00 with a Fox also seen. 2moro it’s off by taxi or tube to Camden to be placed for quick getaway next day on Euro* with the tube strike that day. xx XX!! Here’s Auntie Ann’s funeral brochure for 17/8 front  back.

August 16th: maximum 16C, minimum 10C, light NE breeze, steady rain in morning after overnight soaking, little thunder, some lightning, gloomy. Train journey HEX-EAL was full of trouble, with cables down at Stevenage, no doubt a result of recent hot weather when they sag and are more likely to become entangled with the pickup gear. It’s no good being a bit late so was relieved as we arrived in KGX 2 hours and 1 minute late from my scheduled cancelled train, so get nearly whole of return ticket refunded! Made EAL late but met by big sis and fed! Booked up for Wigmore 25/9 and South Bank 27/9 (both with son) to go with Opera North in Leeds on 29/9, all part of my early autumn cultural tour. Hoping to meet somebody!! xx XX!! Funds unchanged wtd after being 7k yesterday. 2moro is a very sad day: funeral of Auntie Ann, aged 94, in Wiltshire. Wore my dark suit down. Will be a catchup with relatives.

Below is some climate analysis as looked at monthly. This month’s rise was a striking one as the heat flowed from the ocean onto the land at +0.36C anomaly. Europe was particularly warm. The ice report is interesting, confirming that the Arctic is recovering a little of its ice cover with a pronounced barrier emerging between Arctic regions and the European continent to the south, meaning Arctic regions stay cooler and the continent below overheats. A hole in the Arctic ozone layer is blamed for this phenomena, not climate change, anyway directly. Maybe pollutants are involved. Loss of ice in Antarctica is attributed to unusual weather patterns. La Niña continues.

UAH Global Temperature Update for July, 2022: +0.36 deg. C. August 2nd, 2022 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D. https://www.drroyspencer.com/2022/08/uah-global-temperature-update-for-july-2022-0-36-deg-c/

https://www.nsstc.uah.edu/climate/. GLOBAL TEMPERATURE REPORT. EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE CENTER. THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA IN HUNTSVILLE. JULY 2022 :: MAPS AND GRAPHS

Global climate trend since Dec. 1 1978: +0.13 C per decade. The global temperature departure from average in July bounced back from a drop in June to increased warmth in July. The global mean temperature was +0.36 °C (+0.65 °F) above the long-term average, up +0.30 °C (+0.54 °F) from June. The rise was, as was the drop last month, most prominent in the tropics as the temperature climbed +0.48 °C (+0.86 °F) from June almost claiming the title of a record one-month jump, but came in shy of the +0.53 °C (+0.95° F) that occurred back in the 1983 El Niño. These types of up-and-down shifts occur in all the regions from time to time, for example, the temperature of the south polar region fell over 0.6 °C from June to July just this month.

The latest values of various El Niño/La Niña indices indicate the La Niña is still quite evident, so July’s sudden tropical warming is likely related to the periodic heating events associated with oscillations such as the Madden-Julian. Interestingly, the upper-ocean heat content of a major portion of the tropical Pacific lost a considerable amount of heat during July, some of which likely found its way into the atmosphere, warming it up. This heat content was noted to be slightly above average in June, but is now well below average.

The planet’s warmest spot, in terms of the monthly departure from average was near the Dateline north of New Zealand at +3.6 °C. The map this month did not show extensive areas of warmth, but rather about a dozen regional warm patches such as over the Northeast Pacific, Europe, Eastern Russia, western China, central South America, Indian Ocean off South Africa, western Australia and two regions in the South Pacific. It is interesting to note that the brief but intense heat wave in Britain did not impact the monthly average atmospheric temperature much at all. The coolest departure from average was also in the southern hemisphere over the Ross Sea in the far South Pacific at -2.3 °C. A few patches of fairly cool anomalies were also found in the tropical South Pacific, central-south Russia and along the dateline near Alaska and far eastern Russia. “

The latest on the evolution of La Niña and its anticipated diminishment by 2023 is provided by NOAA here: https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/enso_evolution-status-fcsts-web.pdf

ENSO Alert System Status: La Niña is present . La Niña Advisory Equatorial sea surface temperatures (SSTs) are below average across most of the Pacific Ocean. The tropical Pacific atmosphere is consistent with La Niña. La Niña is expected to continue, with chances for La Niña gradually decreasing from 86% in the coming season to 60% during December

http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/ August 2, 2022

The seasonal decline in Arctic sea ice extent from mid-July onward has proceeded at a near average pace. Extent is currently well below average, but above that observed for recent years. Extent is particularly low in the Laptev Sea sector, but ice extends to near the shore further east. Depending on weather conditions, the southern route through the Northwest Passage may become open. An area of low concentration ice persists over the central Arctic Ocean, extending to near the North Pole, and Antarctic ice extent is still at a record low.

As of August 1, Arctic sea ice extent stood at 6.99 million square kilometers (2.70 million square miles) (Figure 1a). The decline rate of the extent through the second half of July was near the 1981 to 2010 average. Extent on August 1, while well below the 1981 to 2010 average, was the highest since 2014 and overall was twelfth lowest in the satellite record (Figure 1b). The average extent for the month of July as a whole was 8.25 million square kilometers (3.19 million square miles), the twelfth lowest in the satellite record.

As of this report, Antarctic sea ice extent persists at record low levels, with regional low ice extent along the Weddell Sea at its northern ice edge, much of the East Antarctic coast, and the Bellingshausen Sea.

A recent paper by our colleagues John Turner and others from British Antarctic Survey, along with co-authors from India and the U.S., looks at the conditions that led to the record low sea ice extent observed in February of this year. Overall, the authors attribute the low sea ice conditions to a combination of large-scale circulation patterns, including La Niña and a strong Amundsen Sea Low, and the impacts of severe regional storms moving ice away from the coast and into warmer waters and greater sunlight. Turner, J., C. Holmes, T. Caton Harrison, T. Phillips, B. Jena, T. Reeves-Francois, R. Fogt, E. R. Thomas, C. C. Bajish. 2022. Record low Antarctic sea ice cover in February 2022. Geophysical Research Letters. doi:10.1029/2022GL098904.

While the Antarctic ozone hole that develops in austral spring is well known, stratospheric ozone depletion can also occur in the Arctic, though to a lesser extent. A recent study by Marina Friedel and colleagues, based on both observations and models, finds that springtime stratospheric ozone depletion over the Arctic is consistently followed by surface temperature and precipitation anomalies consistent with a positive Arctic Oscillation, an atmospheric pattern known to have significant impacts on climate conditions over the parts of the Northern Hemisphere as well as the Arctic. The authors argue that this is because ozone depletion leads to a reduction in short-wave radiation absorption, causing persistent negative temperature anomalies in the lower stratosphere and a delayed break up of the stratospheric polar vortex. When the Arctic Oscillation is positive, sea level air pressure is lower than average over the North Pole and higher than average over the mid-latitudes. This pressure pattern helps to keep cold air in the Arctic and favors warmer temperatures over the mid-latitudes. In 2020, Arctic ozone concentrations reached a record low on March 12 of 205 Dobson Units (Figure 5) compared to an average value of 240 Dobson Units for this time of year. At the same time, the Arctic Oscillation index reached a record high positive value. As a result, central and northern Europe were exceptionally warm and dry in spring 2020, whereas wet and cold conditions prevailed in the Arctic. Friedel, M., G. Chiodo, A. Stenke, et al. 2022. Springtime arctic ozone depletion forces northern hemisphere climate anomalies. Nature Geoscience. doi:10.1038/s41561-022-00974-7. “

August 15th: maximum 22C, minimum 15C, light E breeze, cloudy, mainly dry but some sparse heavy raindrops at 07:00 and in evening from 18:45, heavy rain from 23:00. Made R at B4m4l, collected money as JR off with Covid, good chat on early mediaeval history, how much was written down. Much later made G4g4s with A/R for good chat, K’s last nite sadly!! Pouring with rain as left at 23:30. Added yesterday’s results to BirdTrack. Had a rarity now, a Badger, on way in, at Loughbrow, and a Barn Owl on way back at Ordley at 23:55 (after getting £30 petrol, now down to 178p). What a dismal contribution on energy by Starmer: he’s clueless, converting us to a South American banana republic in months with populist pegging of prices. National Grid power sources are dramatic over last month as anticyclone keeps winds low and high temperatures affect solar panel outputs. Here’s current picture, showing gas contributing over 50% in last day, week and month. Renewables are contributing 10-24% of electricity demand over same period but remember divide by 5 to get proportion of total energy demand, that’s 2-5%. Note that Starmer did not mention business energy needs; businesses are not covered by the cap and are already paying much increased charges, leading to a crippling financial future. We should be building a nuclear power station each year to achieve a high-density low-carbon power source. xx XX!!

August 14th: maximum 27C, minimum 15C, light E breeze, sunny all day, dry. Last day of the warm spell, in the north. Butterflies at Ordley comprised a Small Copper, 2 Small White, 1 Speckled Wood, 2 Small Tortoiseshell, 2 Peacock. 2 of these, Small Copper and Small Tortoiseshell, are new for the weekend so that’s 10 species of butterfly over the last 2 days at Ordley. 1 Chiffchaff was calling from the field. Made Bywell from 15:15-16:55; it was hard work but did get some interesting results. A Common Buzzard juvenile was up at Styford E at 15:46 and 16:40 and a family group of 3 birds (ad, 2 juv) was up to N at 16:08. A Red Kite adult was up over Mowden Hall at 15:33, a juvenile was up over Bywell Cottagebank at 15:53 twice and an adult was up at Styford E at 16:00, joined by a juvenile at 16:41; so 2-3 successful Red Kite sites. Thought Black Kite might all have gone but at 16:36 a juvenile powered its way from the E into trees 1  2  3, N of the Bywell site. On way out at 16:54 a juvenile Kestrel was hovering over a field near the A69. So that’s 4 types of raptor: 4 Common Buzzard, 4 Red Kite, 1 Kestrel, 1 Black Kite – 10 birds. Total was 19 bird-types, including 10 Swallow, 5 Chaffinch, 4 Goldfinch. Mowed some grass, completing the wilder areas, leading into orchard and field – always satisfying before the rain arrives! Completed the Festival updates! Added many records to BirdTrack: 1/7 Styford, 8/7 Juillac and Marciac, 7/8 Dilston, 12/8 Haltwhistle. Booked train tickets to Ealing for next trip – cost £109 flexible return, much cheaper than plane – quoted £360 for one way NCL-LHR! xx XX!!

From 18th July-14th August on BirdGuides, 12 positive reports of Black Kite, very widely scattered but emphasis on Wales (Ceredigion, Powys, Anglesey), Scotland (Argyll, Lothian), SE England (Bucks), SW England (Cornwall) so some W bias nationally:

20:44 14/08 Black Kite Cornwall Drift Reservoir one photographed over north-east arm this morning

18:11 12/08 Black Kite Argyll Loch Caolisport 16:08 one drifted NNE inland of B8024 towards Achahoish late afternoon

16:32 10/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian no sign of adult at feeding station by 16:30

21:46 09/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian 15:20 adult again at feeding station

13:00 09/08 Black Kite Lothian Dunbar 12:30 one flew west over Doon Hill

13:01 08/08 Black Kite Lothian Belhaven Bay one flew towards saltmarsh early afternoon

11:03 07/08 Black Kite Anglesey Llyn Coron one flew south-east late morning

18:18 05/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian no sign of adult by mid-afternoon

22:35 04/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian adult reported again between 16:30 and 17:00

15:38 02/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian no sign of adult from car park viewpoint by 15:30

16:48 01/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian16:40 adult still showing well from car park viewpoint

16:47 01/08 Black Kite Powys Glaslyn MWT no sign today

15:51 01/08 Black Kite Ceredigion Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian 15:47 adult at feeding station late afternoon

17:14 31/07 Black Kite Powys Glaslyn MWT 17:08 one still

16:33 31/07 Black Kite Powys Glaslyn MWT 16:05 one

12:38 31/07 Black Kite Buckinghamshire High Wycombe 12:36 one reported in Red Kite roost off Chairborough Road

17:44 24/07 Black Kite East Sussex Ashdown Forest report of one over Ashdown Park Hotel was erroneous

12:14 24/07 Black Kite East Sussex Ashdown Forest 09:27 one flew east over Ashdown Park Hotel


Honey-buzzard from 18/7-14/8: at breeding sites: Swanton Novers 4 birds, Wykeham Forest 1, Welbeck 1. A lot of sightings (29) from other sites particularly from 4/8 as emigration started:

10:19 14/08 European Honey Buzzard Oxfordshire Gallowstree Common 10:15 dark morph drifted south-east

19:55 13/08 European Honey Buzzard Jersey St Ouen's Pond 16:45 11/08 adult flew over

19:01 13/08 European Honey Buzzard West Yorkshire Keighley Moor Reservoir 17:30 one flew over

12:11 13/08 European Honey Buzzard Kent Langdon Cliffs NT female flew north over fields

10:29 13/08 European Honey Buzzard West Sussex Pulborough Brooks RSPB one over South Brooks from Hail's View

10:24 12/08 European Honey Buzzard Northamptonshire Islip 10:03 one flew south

19:00 11/08 European Honey Buzzard Wiltshire Langford Lakes 10/08 one flew over yesterday

15:45 11/08 European Honey Buzzard Cornwall Restronguet Point 15:38 one flew towards Feock

10:46 11/08 European Honey Buzzard Kent Dungeness RSPB 10:25 one flew north