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22 9.14

Mid September is the peak of autumn bird migration and birdwatchers hope for easterly winds and a clear night. Many, especially the smaller (passerine), birds migrate at night; with an easterly wind those travelling from North East Europe can be drifted across the North Sea to Kent.

Then, if they should encounter a weather front of cloud and rain, they have to descend. This makes for exciting birdwatching as many birds, often including rarities, can suddenly arrive. A wet morning in September is perhaps not everybody's wish?!

Another centenary this year (BIFGA Quiz participants take note!) is that of the death on the 1st September (in Cincinnati zoo) of the last Passenger Pigeon on earth. They had declined from millions to extinction in a very short period of time. Alastair Henderson