I imagine that many patch birders have their secret wish lists - the rare birds which they think might, just might, turn up on various parts of their patch.
Patch birding can be quiet, particularly when compared to dashing off to the big birding hotspots, or chasing down twitchable rarities. So, as one wanders around a birdless patch of land on a particularly unpromising day, one tends to finds oneself thinking: "Those conifers would be perfect for a Crossbill or two - it's bound to happen sooner or later!"
So here is my wish list for the various parts of my patch, with my own guess at how likely they are to appear in the next three years:
Leam Valley - spring migrant Wheatears on the hill (50%), Barn Owl over the meadow (75%), Green Sandpiper on the scrape (75%), Firecrest (10%).
Ufton - Turtle Dover (75%), Crossbill (25%), Firecrest (10%), Yellow-browed Warbler (2%).
Cubbington Wood - Goshawk (5%), Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (30%), Woodcock (25%).
Offchurch - Barn Owl on the estate (75%)
Radford Semele - Quail (30%), Red-legged Partridge (50%)
Napton Reservoir - Black-necked Grebe (25%), Wheater (50%), Osprey (1%).
Across whole patch - Raven (50%), Red Kite (75%).
So, not much to ask. All would be patch firsts, and six would be lifers. I'll keep 'em peeled then shall I, and let you know how I get on?