Murmuration challenge

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Saturday, 5 March 2011 17:21

OK. In the above photo is large flock of Starlings that were feeding on a farm during a survey today. To see what it's like to survey birds in the winter, try and estimate how many birds are in the picture. You have 10 seconds before they fly over the effective horizon (this is basically what happened today). You can click on the photo to emulate looking through binoculars but no  actual counting or using any fancy dot-counting software! Please post your estimate in the comments box here on the blog and I will post the answer (to the nearest ten birds perhaps) from actually counting individuals from a blown up print in a few days. I really want to see if there is a trend in people's estimates.

I completed the winter surveys on my first farm today and there were a few surprises. The good news was flushing a pair of Grey Partridge (new to the site) from a beetle bank. The down side was I only saw three Yellowhammers and not a single Corn Bunting (there have been up to a hundred). Not sure why these changes have occurred or whether the birds will return, we shall have to wait and see...

19 Response to "Murmuration challenge"

Graeme Lyons Says:

Jenny Dunn suggested 1200

Graeme Lyons Says:

My cousin Kev said 1265 via Facebook

Graeme Lyons Says:

Josh Jenkins-Shaw came in a little higher at 9576 via Facebook

Greg Says:

I reckon 2,411!!

Anonymous Says:

Hang on I can now leave a comment! @jennyclairedunn :)

Anonymous Says:

700 @Nanuak

Graeme Lyons Says:

Scouse Steve says 1560 and Kim Neith-Thompson 1060 via Twitter

Anonymous Says:

I estimate....mmmm....*sucks teeth*.....3060.

Graeme Lyons Says:

Darren Worton said 1105 via Facebook

Graeme Lyons Says:

Martin Goodey said 1000 via Twitter

Graeme Lyons Says:

Inspired by Tubbs from the League of Gentlemen, my own girlfriend Jo, helpful as ever, suggested the fictional number twelvety.

Graeme Lyons Says:

Catharine Willerton said 2841 via Facebook

Graeme Lyons Says:

Ian Sims also went for 1200

Ben Lewis Says:

My guess is about 7500, always tricky to be accurate when you have a 10 second view!

Graeme Lyons Says:

We also have 6300 and 4800 from Nicola Stainon and her partner via Facebook

Graeme Lyons Says:

Steve Teale said 2500 via Facebook

Anonymous Says:

A lowly 780...in under ten secs!

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