Who am I?

An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to see the natural world as a place for competition. I catch fish, watch birds, derive immense pleasure from simply looking at butterflies, moths, bumble-bees, etc - without the need for rules! I am Dylan and this is my blog - if my opinions offend? Don't bother logging on again - simple!


Thursday 5 August 2021

Signs of the times

Knowing just how unlikely it would be, that lightning might strike twice, I still went through the ritual of the 03.00 hrs alarm call and the effort involved with getting my kit out to the flatland drain which has become focal to my latest challenge. I did register a bite but, failed to connect with the culprit which I suspect to have been an eel? There was a heavy dew and a veil of mist covered the surrounding fields as the light intensified prior to sunrise. With hardly a breath of wind, it felt quite chilly and I was grateful for that extra sweater I'd chucked on the barrow. After chatting with my brother, Sye, yesterday I got my bait in position then donned the chest waders, just in case. I know that I didn't need them today, but I did do that bit of gardening I'd overlooked on Tuesday. 

If the fish weren't playing ball, the local birdlife certainly did their best to keep me from boredom. I recorded a nice mix of waders, whilst sat behind the rod. A bunch of Sand Martins had roosted in the marginal reeds before departing south on their mammoth journey. Two flocks of Goldfinches, totalling in excess of seventy birds, quickly moved through; a sure sign of Autumn. Then, as if to confirm the fact, a lone Golden Plover flew over, uttering its' mournful piping call then I watched three Common Snipe, flushed by a juvenile Marsh Harrier, again my first since March.

The garden birding has also begun to show signs of the changing seasons. Common Swifts have all but gone, I saw only two today and the southerly passage of Common Buzzards is now underway. Two yesterday, one today, plus Hobby, Sparrowhawk and Kestrel sightings are becoming more frequent. It was great to see a juvenile Greenfinch on the feeders this afternoon, hopefully a sign that they've turned the corner on that wicked "trichomonosis" disease which so decimated their numbers?

Although I no longer feel the need to chase scarce avian visitors to the Kent countryside, Birdguides website is probably the most visited cyber address I use. Knowing what is being seen around the county keeps me in the loop of what I might possibly discover whilst casting a line. The Hoopoe at Oare Marshes, yesterday, caused a wry smile. They're a bird which I associate with holidays, although the last one I saw was flying along London Road in Deal! Just like Bee-eaters and Night Herons, birds which ooze the Mediterranean sunshine. We will be going back to Kefalonia, just don't know when as the logistics of getting the gang of six back together is, to say the least, a bit complex!

As a blogger I often find myself questioning why I bother? The time and effort involved in producing a post is relative, I guess, but not being the sharpest pencil in the box means it does require a modicum of commitment. I'm fully aware that these thoughts are not unique, many of my fellow bloggers have made mention of similar feelings over the past decade and, indeed, a few have chucked in the towel. On Tuesday I discovered (again) exactly why this platform is such a rewarding place to express your experiences and emotions. I am humbled by the reaction to my capture of that carp and am truly grateful to those who made the effort to offer comments - cheers!


  1. I've just been reading your account of that beautiful common and suspect a blank is inevitable after such a catch, it's the only way you can get your feet to touch ground again. I am equally certain that you will catch more.

    1. Hi Dave, welcome to the little world of Dylan of Dumpton. That carp has left a lasting impression. etched deep in my soul. Quite how I managed to land it is a true mystery, as I am targeting a very large tench at present. As I said in the post - "It had my name on it" thus fate played a huge role, if you believe in such random concepts? Come the end of this challenge I will write a post outlining the thought processes and tactics involved. I have been incredibly fortunate to have taken many beautiful "wild" carp from these East Kent drains, each and every one is a fish to cherish. They are true carp fishing gold! Thanks for taking time to comment - tight lines - Dylan

  2. Dyl, that question 'why bother?' seems to crop up for many of us from time to time. And I think you've answered it nicely too. You have a bunch of virtual mates who look forward to reading the latest from Dumpton...

    For example...

    I've just revisited your last post. Why? Because I knew I'd enjoy it again. The first time I read it I realised from the title that you'd caught something good, so was deliberately careful to scroll down slowly. I wanted to read the whole account before I saw any photos of what you'd caught, and am grateful that you positioned them on the page so wisely! The suspense was killing me!

    Imagine depriving your readership of such gems by not blogging any more. Unthinkable! 😄

    1. Thanks for these thoughts mate, I do believe we view the role of blogging in a very similar way. To have the likes of Steve Gale, Jono, Stewart Sexton and your good self setting the bar, I do sometimes struggle for content which is up to scratch. It is certainly difficult to maintain enthusiasm when consistent blank sessions become nothing more than accounts of the same marshland bird species as I saw the previous visit.
      Maybe I'm being a little hard on myself but, as I said in a reply to Derek Faulkner just recently, I have no intention of quitting blogland. I want to see a decade "Of Esox" pass then push on for a second, health and enthusiasm permitting. At present the blog is on a roll and visitor figures (probably some spambot thingy) are off the scale and comments are frequent, so I feel I must be doing something right. The reaction to the capture of that wild carp is all I require to keep me pushing ahead with the quest for the fish I am seeking. Once again, many thanks for your comment, stay safe and keep blogging - Dyl