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UK500: Birding in the Fast Lane is an insight into the world of twitching, an anecdotal, humourous and highly personal account of some of the author's most memorable - and amusing - missions to add new birds to his ever-increasing British life-list. Complemented by his own photographs, paintings and illustrations, he recounts car crashes, stormy sea crossings, plane convoys and even a coastguard rescue, all encountered during his quest to see 500+ bird species in Britain and Ireland, a quest which has spanned 17 years. If you never thought the simple pleasure of bird watching - now one of the fastest-growing recreational activities in the world - could be described as `extreme', you should read this book.
This is a companion volume to Adrian Riley's best selling book Arrivals and Rivals: a birding oddity.
Reprinted October 2007 with minor corrections.
About the Author:
James Hanlon was born in South London in 1974 and grew up in East Ham, where very early on he developed a keen interest in wildlife, regularly going out bird watching by the age of 10. By his mid-teens the author had established himself as a keen `twitcher', contributing illustrations and photographs to a number of rare bird publications. After graduating in Zoology at Bangor University, he went backpacking to New Zealand, Australia and Bali. On returning to the UK, Hanlon resumed his birding activities and soon decided to try to record 500 bird species by his 30th birthday at the end of 2004.
Foreword by Richard Millington, Birding World. Introduction. Chapter 1: The Ancient Mariner. Chapter 2: Pilgrimage to Shetland. Chapter 3: Visiting Albert. Chapter 4: In the Company of Whales. Chapter 5: Southbound to Scilly. Chapter 6: October Thrushes. Chapter 7: Cape Clear. Chapter 8: The Rescue. Chapter 9: The Siege. Chapter 10: Day Trip to Dingle. Chapter 11: Fair Isle's Double. Chapter 12: All at Sea. Chapter 13: The Final Fling. Listings. Resources.
James Hanlon was born in South London in 1974. Very early on he developed a keen interest in wildlife, regularly going birdwatching by the age of 10. By his mid-teens, the author had established himself as a keen twitcher, contributing illustrations and occasionally photographs top a number of rare bird publications. James Hanlon graduated from Bangor University in Zoology. Presently, the author works as an Immigration Enforcement Officer in Essex and lives near Cambridge.