The Bird Race is not really a ‘race’ at all; it’s more of a species count over an eight hour period, within the boundaries of South Tyneside. The friendly (but competitive) event proves popular with local birders every year and this year was no exception. 20 or so birders set off in their teams at 8am sharp from Souter Lighthouse with the aim of recording as many different species before returning to Souter at 4pm/last light.
There were two trophies up for grabs, one ‘mobile’ and one ‘walking’.
The mobile teams used vehicles which enabled them to cover more ground and tick more birds, whilst the walkers did just that, and covered roughly a 15 mile circuit on foot – tough going for some!
The winning mobile team counted a total of 87 species and the winning ‘walkers’ clocked up a very impressive 76. An overall total of 100 birds were noted by all teams combined, which just goes to show that even on crisp, short winter days there’s still plenty of wildlife out there if you’re prepared to go looking for it.
Souter Lighthouse offered a very warm welcome back in the way of hot soup, crusty bread rolls and a wonderful buffet (thanks Simon!) which went a very long way in helping to ease those tired legs and blistered feet.
See you all next year!