Patch Birding Patchwork Challenge 2019

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OH Bird Recorder
Feb 5, 2017
So, after being really busy and not taking part in this annual challenge at all last year (and being a total slacker in 2017) I thought i would give it another go this year - partly because i'm also taking part in the #walk1000miles challenge. I thought that the two challenges would go very well together - I might as well make the most of all that trundling round the patch and tick off some birds as I go...

Progress so far in 2019:-

Had a good bash at this on the 1st January, a good start to the year :)

1. Starling
2. Blackbird
3. Robin
4. Greylag Goose
5. Wren
6. Redwing
7. Rock Dove / Feral Pigeon
8. Song Thrush
9. Buzzard
10. Curlew
11. Common Gull
12. Lapwing
13. Great Black-backed Gull
14. Oystercatcher
15. Eider
16. Cormorant
17. Great Northern Diver
18. Raven
19. Red-breasted merganser
20. Herring Gull
21. Twite
22. Golden Plover
23. Teal
24. Mute Swan
25. Whooper Swan
26. Hen Harrier
27. Mallard
28. Goldeneye
29. Tufted duck
30. Wigeon
31. Sanderling
32. Ringed Plover
33. Greenfinch
34. Little Grebe
35. Turnstone
36. Purple Sandpiper
37. Dunlin
38. Goldfinch
39. Reed Bunting
40. House sparrow
41. Chaffinch
42. Long-tailed Duck
43. Skylark

6th January

44. Bar-tailed Godwit
45. Collared dove

7th January

46. Dunnock

9th January

47. Snipe

11th January

48. Fieldfare
49. Golden Eagle

13th January

50. Pintail
51. Hooded Crow

So, as of today i'm on 51 species and 60 points.

How does this compare to final totals in previous years?

2013: 106 species, 140 points
2014: 97 species, 133 points
2015: 98 species, 125 points
2016: 87 species, 114 points
2017: 71 species, 90 points
2018 did not participate

Patchwork Challenge (PWC) information:-

PWC website
PWC blog
PWC Facebook group
PWC Twitter

Other active Patch birders in the Outer Hebrides:-

Mister T (South Uist)
Bruce (two patches in Barra)
Tristan (two patches in Lewis)
Bill (South Uist)


Being battered by the wind and scoping the ducks, swans and geese on Loch Hallan this afternoon.


As it was so windy all the gulls were hanging out on the machair side of the dunes.


OH Bird Recorder
Feb 5, 2017
Bit of an update on this after an extended period off-island.

18th April
52. Willow Warbler
53. Stonechat

19th April
54. Grey Heron

24th April
55. Lesser Redpoll
56. Chiffchaff
57. Blackcap
58. Swallow
59. Short-eared Owl

29th April
60. Pink-footed Goose

30th April
61. Mealy Redpoll
62. Pied Wagtail
63. Meadow Pipit
64. Arctic Tern
65. Black-headed Gull
66. Redshank
67. Whimbrel
68. Moorhen
69. Shoveler
70. Shelduck

1st May
71. Wheatear
72. Sand Martin
73. Gannet

My score now stands at 73 species and 87 points so i've already beaten my 2017 totals :)


Sand Martins today new for my 2019 patchlist. Getting some practice in photographing birds in flight...


Whimbrel yesterday (30th April)


From the patch, looking south towards Barra


OH Bird Recorder
Feb 5, 2017
2nd May
74. Cuckoo
75. Corncrake
76. Linnet

And this is how the Islands Minileague stands at the 1st May (taken from the Patchwork Challenge website)
As you can see the Outer Hebrides is well represented with four out of the top six island patches being in our islands. Bruce is setting a cracking lead here in the OH with both of his patches - Ardmhor and Brevig taking up the top two places with Tristan's patch in Stornoway a fairly close third.

It's all a bit of fun and i'm just trying to beat my previous years patch totals - I think I probably have no chance of catching John Bowler (Tireebirder) who is once again in the top spot or Scott Reid who is in the Isles of Scilly. The thing I really like is that it just gets you out there!


Still feeling a bit rough with the shingles so I drove down to the shore and sat for a while in the sun.



OH Bird Recorder
Feb 5, 2017
77. Sedge Warbler

Arrived home from a week away in Lewis and a Sedge Warbler was heard singing away in a nearby garden making 77 species for the year on the patch (and 92 points so far). :)


OH Bird Recorder
Feb 5, 2017
79. Lesser Black-backed Gull - these have been in short supply on the patch this year.
80. Common Sandpiper - at last! Everyone else has been seeing and hearing these on the patch apart from me :)