All About Us at The Biggest Twitch
Alan DaviesBirds are my passion, always have been. From a very early age, birds have been the focus of my life. The reason to suffer altitude sickness in the Andes to see an Ecuadorian Hillstar, trek across the Karoo desert in 45°C to glimpse a small grey Eremomela, empty my stomach over the side of a small boat with engine failure just to see an Isabelline Wheatear it has always been birds. To see birds in wonderful places is what I live for.
Birds have always played an important role in Alan's life, from his first job cast adrift as a warden alone on Llandwyn Island off Anglesey at the tender age of 16, to paddling about in dinghy off the North Norfolk coast protecting a huge tern colony. For six years, Alan was the Site Manager of the RSPB reserve at Conwy on the North Wales coast, and oversaw its development into a popular visitor attraction as well as a haven for wildlife. Although this was the dream job for a keen birder, Alan gave up his job with the RSPB to travel the world and fulfill a lifetime ambition with The Biggest Twitch, our year of travelling the globe in 2008 to set a new birding world record.
As the author of the successful site guide Best Birdwatching Sites in North Wales, he has over thirty years' experience of finding the very best birds. He runs Birdline Wales and Birdline North West, the successful information service established in 1990, run by birdwatchers for birdwatchers, so with access to up-to-the minute bird information, he is in a unique position to know just what birds are being seen and where. Born and bred in North Wales, nobody knows birdwatching here better than Alan!
Alan gets up close and personal with the wildlife in Namibia
Ruth MillerRuth is a relative rarity in the UK: a female birder who goes birding regularly herself for the sheer pleasure of looking at birds. Already a keen outdoors girl interested in wildlife, Ruth met Alan through their mutual work at the RSPB, and her passion for birds grew under his influence.
Since leaving her job as the RSPB’s Head of Trading and moving to North Wales, Ruth has worked as a freelance marketing consultant which allows her the freedom to escape the computer if a good bird shows up. When not writing marketing plans, Ruth can often be seen walking and birding in the beautiful Welsh countryside. Combining this with her third passion of drinking tea, Ruth has written the popular “Birds, Boots and Butties” books on the best places in North Wales for birding, walking and enjoying a good cuppa, with other regional editions on the way.
"I’m always looking for something new, I want to see what’s just around the corner. I walk along looking at life rather than where I’m putting my feet, and if it’s flying, crawling, growing or flowering, I want to take a closer look at it, even if I don’t know its name.
When I’m old, I want to be able to look back on our big adventure of The Biggest Twitch, our world record breaking birding year in 2008. That was a truly life-changing experience! Now we're back living in North Wales, there's nothing we enjoy more than sharing our wonderful birds and beautiful scenery with other people on our guided birdwatching trips."
Ruth watching the seabird colonies on the cliffs of North Wales
Coming back to North Wales after their year of birding the world, Alan and Ruth set up their own company called The Biggest Twitch, offering guided birdwatching daytrips, weekends and longer tours in North Wales, across the UK and further afield. Instead of twitching, they now enjoy running relaxed-paced guided birdwatching tours sharing the very best birds with other people. With their knowledge and experience, there's no-one better than Alan and Ruth of The Biggest Twitch to offer you the best birdwatching experience.
For information on any of our guided birdwatching trips, please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.