For some reason unbeknown to only me I just couldn't get the urge to get excited about this top draw rarity. Maybe it was the late winter apathy or the cost of filling the car up with black gold, though I suspect it was the tainted nature of this record. I mean who wants to drive the 140 mile trip to North Norfolk to watch this Sibe' gem in a cage? Well some birders clearly wanted to see it in a cage as apparently over 150 birders made the trip - for them it was worthwhile as the bird was released early in order to enable the bird to stop knocking seven bells out of itself in the large cage. I can't help wonder what they would have done to their lists had it not been released - but hey who gives a shit. For me a Sibe' Thrush has no right to be in a back garden in Norfolk, they should only be found skulking at the bottom of a Northern Isles wall or clinging to the rocky edge of a geo anything else is just disappointing!
25 Years today saw the start of the miners strike. Whilst it would be easy to sit here and write about how harshly treated the miners were and how the Notts miners were scabs I won't. I was 14 years old and had just started birding my local patches all of which had one thing in common - coal! They were (still are) old spoil heaps, subsidence flashes or previously opencast areas that without the mining industry would never have existed. Whats more without the pits closing sites such as Pit-house West and the new Orgreave workings would not exist, nor would the superb Old Moor complex. Like it or not the legacy of the pit closures in South Yorkshire has been a wealth of great birding areas that clearly benefit wildlife much more than any coal mine ever would have. So perhaps as birders we should thank Mrs Thatcher, though for me it'll be a cold day in hell before I do!