I dont know when I first started being interested in birds.  I know I had all the wildlife books and I like animal stories.  I remember my dad put up a nest box outside my bedroom window under the eaves and a blue tit nested in it.

I know I had my own pair of binoculars by the time I went to college.  I had a new pair in 1994, a lightweight pair, but they’ve been through a lot of dusty roads (I think the tiger watching holiday was a dust too far) and I recently reverted to using my original ones.  They have better light-gathering qualities than the lightweight ones.

Most of what I did was to just enjoy watching birds, seeing different ones and also seeing my regular visitors.  I fed the birds at my old house and delighted in them using my garden but didnt sign up to do any surveys or recording of birds until everything went online – and then I took up the BTO Garden Bird Watch with enthusiasm!  Then it was just a small step to Birdtrack and I discovered I am a compulsive lister.  Well I always did have a yen for collecting things.  But not a twitcher – I dont go chasing round the countryside for the latest rarity.  I just like to see what I see in my favourite areas and explore new places.

When I came to Norfolk I discovered heaven in birdwatching terms.  I also discovered the joys of surveys.  First I took part in the Plover survey of 2006-7, then the Little Ringed Plover survey in 2007 which I did very badly I’m afraid, partly due to the weather and partly due to a bad foot which meant that days I could cope with walking were limited (and invariably wet).  I was also too new to the area I think.

But when the BTO started the fieldwork for the new Bird Atlas 2007-11 I was ready willing and able to get involved.  And then my Regional Organiser asked if I’d like to do the Breeding Bird Survey…..  and so it continues.

Read more about the birdwatching or just bird surveys