Tuesday 2 April 2024


As I have neither a decent garden or a decent local patch at the moment (our move date is set for late May) I've resorted to living in the past and updating my world lists and been revising what I've seen and where. 

I'm mainly using Ebird and i-Naturalist and been transferring data from spreadsheets into the central hub of iGoTerra which seems to be the best global pan species listing platform. Natural history is infinitely complex and we all reluctantly have to draw some lines around small parts of it in order to focus so I've more or less limited myself to just recording Birds, Mammals, Reptiles and Amphibians, Moths and Butterflies and Dragonflies which is basically the highly visible groups which can be seen while Birding is the primary objective.  

It's still a work in progress, still got lots of butterfly and moth records to take across but so far my stats show that I've recorded 4535 species across 45 countries of the world. I reckon I've still got another 500 to add so should be around the 5000 mark. I've done loads of plant recording and other taxa too but I'll keep them out of it- might add orchids at some point maybe. 

So going forward, I'm very conscious that most of my life is behind me and I've spent a lot of it doing local patching, project work, campaigning and research and not so much Eco-toursim (aka window licking) so basically I've only seen a very small part of the natural world (there are at least 2 million species on Earth). So it's definitely time to start getting through the bucket list before it's too late. 

So looking at my map there are some clear gaps in South America, Central Africa, Middle and Central Asia and particularly the Far East and China. We are going to Australia this summer so that will be a good start. It will be great when Jacob and Isaac are old enough to travel properly too.

In terms of targets I'm hoping to get to 5000 bird species (half of the world's birds), 500 mammals (its a round figure- there's 6500 global species) and I'm going to set myself a tidy 10,000 moths and butterfly species target (there are 160,000 moths and 17,000 butterflies on the planet). For herps and dragonflies I'll make it up as I go along. The main framework going forward will be to target iconic species across the taxa I look at it i.e. looking for Narwals, Fossas, Polar Bears, Birdwings, Tropical moths, Albatrosses, Ground Rollers and Pittas rather than number crunching micromoths, cisticolas, babblers and furnariids.

Will see how I get on! Assuming I don't get conscripted to fight the Russians and can keep running from the rising Global Authoritarianists and have a bit of health luck on my side- I have a life expectancy of another 25 years or so- not very long at all and of course I could have much less time than that. Better get moving. 



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