Some real-life examples from
It’s early May.
This time, Cheryl and Nicola are wandering down a quiet lane in west
It’s mid September. All five girls are at halfway house on Blakeney, bashing their way though the sueda. From the middle of the biggest patch, Sarah, flushes a small passerine, which flies out onto the saltmarsh. She calls to the others: “Erm, that looked interesting…”, and starts to head towards the spot. Nadine, who is already out on the saltmarsh, scans the spot Sarah pointed to. She gets on the bird, and instantly calls it as a first winter male Subalp. She and Sarah celebrate their joint find. The other three girls weren’t really involved, so they can’t count it.
Sarah and Nadine are driving to Horsey to check the pipe dump for rare wheatears. As they head towards Martham, a dark looking gull swings in front of the car. Sarah sits up – “didn’t that look a bit like a Laughing Gull?”… Nadine slows down for a moment, but then they both decide they were just imaging it, and head on to the coast. An hour later, news breaks of an adult Laugher in fields near Potter Heigham. Clearly it’s the same bird, but they can’t claim it as self found, because they didn't bother to properly search for it. They are duly ashamed by their lack of professionalism.
Early on a Saturday morning, Birdguides release some late news from the previous day – a Franklins Gull was seen in the roost at Breydon. Being migration season, Nicola is already out in the field, and making her way to Berney Arms. With the other girls still in bed, she hasn’t heard any fresh news all morning. When she reaches the main scrape, she gets straight onto a fine adult
On a fine morning in August, a Black Stork drifts slowly north over
On a dull day in late winter, Sarah is out scouring the broads for rare ducks. As usual for the broads, she's finding nothing at all. She hears about a Greater Scaup that's appeared at Wroxham, and given the lack of anything else doing, she decides she may as well go and see it. On arriving, she gets on the bird and finds straight away that it is a drake Lesser Scaup. This is a complete surprise, and given that it was confidently identified as a Greater by whoever saw it first, she can count it as a find. If the orignal finder had released the news as a "possible Lesser Scaup", she wouldn't have been able to claim it, even if she were the first to confidently pronounce the id. This is because twitching a "possible" or a "probable" is still twitching, not finding.