January to December 2005

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Total of 119 species recorded at the site in 2005 (see 2005 Site Species List for details). With my personal total for the site in 2005 at 110 species.

Saturday 31/12/05 – 18 Black-tailed Godwit with 333 Wigeon (AM counted), a Snipe (+ 1 over), 22 Shoveler and 2 Raven on Lagoon 1. AM also counted: 251 Teal, 13 Redshank, 6 Shelduck and a Ringed Plover on the estuary. Lagoon 3 had c100 Chaffinch, c100 Linnet, 26 Skylark, 1 Chiffchaff and 12 Stock Dove. Also, 2 Stonechat (Lagoons 2 + 3), c800 Lapwing and c800 Dunlin. My personal tally for the year was 110 species at OPS.

Thursday 29/12/05 – MP reported: 200 Dunlin (+359 at Littleton). The mixed finch flock had increased in cold weather to c200 Linnet, c150 Chaffinch and 20 Skylark. There was also a big gull-roost on the tidal reservoir, with c4000 Common Gull (!) and c2500 Black-headed Gull.


Tuesday 27/12/05 – MP reported: Lagoon 1 – 1 Ruff, 17 Black-tailed Godwit, 15 Shoveler, 367 Wigeon, 242 Teal, 500 Dunlin, 20 Redshank. Lagoon 3 – 2 Stonechat, 25 Skylark, c100 Chaffinch, c100 Linnet, 100 Black-headed Gull, 50 Dunlin. Estuary – 1 Rock Pipit, 11 Oystercatcher, 30 Turnstone, 36 Redshank, 16 Shelduck.


Monday 26/12/05 – The mobile ‘finch’ flock between Lagoon 3 and the shore today had: 1 Yellowhammer (male), 2 Redpoll, 100+ Chaffinch, 6+ Reed Bunting, c100 Linnet, 12 Skylark and 6 Stock Dove. The Treecreeper is still present, with 2 Goldcrest. The Water Rail was again by the seaweed dump, and a Stonechat there. At Shepperdine (low tide) were: 11 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Oystercatcher, 4 Ringed Plover, 21 Shoveler, 20 Redshank, 20 Shelduck and 2 Raven. Also: 1 Peregrine, 1 Jay, 6 Bullfinch, 1 Mute Swan (juv.) and a Fox on Lagoon 1 – which (probably) won’t have to worry about The Hunt in the area this afternoon ! That all gave me a personal best OPS total of 63 species today.


Saturday 24/12/05 – MG reported c750 Lapwing and c400 Dunlin on Lagoon 3.


Thursday 22/12/05 – The flock on Lagoon 3 held: 2 Brambling, c100 Chaffinch, c100 Linnet, 20 Skylark and 5 Reed Bunting. A male Kestrel ate one of the linnets, whole ! On the lagoon at HT were: c600 Lapwing, c800 Dunlin, 110 Black-headed Gull and 10 Common Gull. Lagoon 1 had 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 19 Shoveler and 20 Redshank among the Teal and Wigeon. Also 30 Magpie there (+ 10 elsewhere). A Treecreeper appeared along the path to the shore (seen here last year at this time). A Chiffchaff was along the rhyne. Also: 3 Snipe (over), 2 Raven, 2 Bullfinch and the juvenile Mute Swan is back on the pond.  


Tuesday 20/12/05 – MG reported the Water Rail on the pond behind the hide, again.


Saturday 17/12/05 – A Grey Plover and a Bar-tailed Godwit were blown in on a cold wind from NE. The mixed flock on Lagoon 3 had: 10 Reed Bunting (a good number), c50 Chaffinch, 20 Skylark and c100 Linnet. 3 Raven flew down-river, calling. Also down-river were c100 each of Herring Gull and Lesser Black-backed Gull. A male Tufted Duck was on the river at Shepperdine, with 10 Shoveler, c200 Teal and c100 Wigeon. Pairs of Stonechat were on Lagoons 2 & 3. An adult Mute Swan was on Lagoon 3. A fresh Grey Heron corpse was by the lake. Also: 1 Peregrine, 1 Jay, 1 Green Woodpecker, 4 Bullfinch, 2 Ringed Plover and c200 Dunlin.


Grey Plover,17/12/05.

I saw a Red Admiral butterfly on the wing in the sun on Sunday 11/12/05, at Beggarbush Lane, near Leigh Woods.


Saturday 10/12/05 – A Golden Plover was with the c950 Lapwing and c60 Dunlin on Lagoon 3 at HT. (Not many of the c900 GP at Slimbridge make it here !) Mixed flock on Lagoon 3 had: c150 Linnet, c30 Chaffinch, 16 Stock Dove, c10 Skylark and 5 Meadow Pipit. 2 Stonechat on the shore. A Water Rail was on the edge of the pond behind the hide at dusk (+ 1 heard on Lagoon 2), the Mute Swan is still there, and a Chiffchaff was nearby. Also: c45 Turnstone, 11 Redshank, 1 Peregrine, lots of Fieldfare + Redwing, and 2 Snipe (over).


HL also reported: 7 Oystercatcher, 20 Common Gull (Lagoon 3) and a Pheasant on top of the hide ! (Also 5 Foxhounds on Lagoon 1).


Golden Plover with Lapwing on lagoon 3, 10/12/05.

Sunday 4/12/05 – AM reported: 1 Pintail (male), 1 Kingfisher (flying out of pipe taking the rhyne under the road !), 14 Snipe, 7 Shoveler, 5 Stonechat, 9 Oystercatcher, 53 Turnstone, 45 Dunlin, 144 Mallard, 153 Wigeon, 360 Teal and 3 Mute Swan.


Saturday 3/12/05 – The mixed flock on Lagoon 3 remains: 48 Skylark, c150 Linnet, c30 Chaffinch, 5 Meadow Pipit, 2 Reed Bunting, 11 Stock Dove and 1 male Brambling picked out. A Kingfisher on the rhyne was a site-first for me. 4 Redpoll on Lagoon 2 today, with 2 Stonechat (+ 1 at Lagoon 3). Another Water Rail seen on pond behind hide (+ 2 heard on Lagoon 2), where the juvenile Mute Swan is getting whiter. c1000 Lapwing is impressive at high tide on Lagoon 3, with c200 Dunlin and 10 Shelduck. Also: 1 Peregrine, 6 Shoveler, 4 Great Black-backed Gull, 20 Redshank, 10 Turnstone and 7 Ringed Plover. A male Kestrel having a go at a Grey Squirrel was amusing.


Teal ignoring Fox on lagoon 1, 3/12/05.

Sunday 27/11/05 – Great views of a Water Rail in the open at Lagoon 3, and 2 more heard on lagoon 2. Also on lagoon 3 is a very large mixed flock of birds feeding on weeds: 50 Skylark, 150 Linnet, 30 Chaffinch, 2 Meadow Pipit and 4 Reed Bunting. On lagoon 2 weeds were 6 Redpoll. Also seen: 3 Grey Wagtail, 2 Stonechat, 1 Peregrine, 2 Shoveler, 150 Teal, 100 Wigeon and 250 Curlew on the mud-flats.


Water Rail on lagoon 3, 27/11/05.

Saturday 19/11/05 – Freezing fog, with only 75 yards visibility. A Rock Pipit on the shore at Shepperdine, where there were 20 Redshank. A Little Owl heard by lagoon 3. A Redpoll feeding on Alder to south of lagoon 2, where 2 Water Rail heard and a Snipe over. Lots of Redwing, 6 Song Thrush and a few Fieldfare. Also seemed to be more Robin than usual.


AM reported 1 Jack Snipe and 350 Dunlin.


Video of Grey Phalarope at Ashton Court, using characteristic spinning feeding motion(7.5mb, so may take a while to download) Grey Phalarope video.

(They usually spin in a  clockwise direction, as this one did (according to BoWP). The video is real-time, not speeded up !)


Thursday 17/11/05 – 2 Bewick’s Swan reported in BOC Bird News.


Saturday 12/11/05 – At evening roost on lagoon 3: c520 Lapwing, c500 Dunlin, c300 Black-headed Gull and 12 Redshank. On lagoon 1: 2 Black-tailed Godwit, c100 Teal, c100 Wigeon, c75 Lapwing and 8 Redshank. 1 Mistle Thrush, 2 Fieldfare and 100’s Redwing in fields to south of lagoon 2. Estimated 5 Water Rail calling from various places in reeds on lagoon 2, and 2 Stonechat there. A female Peregrine on pylon. Also: 2 Shoveler 3 Oystercatcher, 20 Turnstone and 2 Mute Swan (one on river).


Photo of Grey Phalarope at Ashton Court in Pictures from other locations.


Saturday 5/11/05 – Lagoons 3 and 1 both looking good, with standing water. At lagoon 1:  4 Shoveler, c130 Teal, c80 Wigeon, c75 Lapwing, 8 Redshank. At Lagoon 3: 1 Pintail (flew to river), 32 Stock Dove, c75 Lapwing, c50 Black-headed Gull and 2 Great Black-backed Gull. Some migration evidenced by 20 Skylark, 20 Fieldfare, c500 Redwing and an increase in Blackbird numbers. 2 Chiffchaff with tit flock. On the lake behind the hide were: 1 Snipe, 1 Tufted Duck and the juvenile Mute Swan. A Water Rail was vocal from lagoon 2 reedbed. Also: 2 Peregrine and a Raven.


MP also reported: A total of 445 Lapwing, 10 Curlew, 77 Dunlin (Lagoon 3), 1 Ringed Plover and 3 Mute Swan (on river)


Thursday 3/11/05 – MP reported: 2 Pintail , 36 Redshank, 385 Lapwing, 4 Black-tailed Godwit, 6 Dunlin, 187 Wigeon, 265 Teal, 65 Mallard (inc. 1 Aylesbury Duck), 29 Stock Dove, c70 Linnet, 3 Stonechat, 1 Snipe.


Friday 28/10/05 – 4 Redpoll on weeds at south end of lagoon 2 (+ 1 over), and also there: 2 Fieldfare, 3 Stonechat and 2 Raven. Waders seen: 3 Oystercatcher, 9 Ringed Plover, c20 Dunlin, 2 Redshank, c20 Lapwing. Also: 1 Peregrine, 4 Bullfinch, 2 Jay. Dragonflies on the wing still.


First Fieldfare of the autumn, 28/10/05.

Tuesday 25/10/05 – Anon. reported: c400 Lapwing, amongst other things.


Friday 21/10/05 – 10 Golden Plover over. Lagoon 3 is looking good: c250 Lapwing, c200 Teal, c50 Wigeon, c80 Black-headed Gull, 3 Great Black-backed Gull, c30 Linnet. 2 Raven low over lagoon 2, where there were 3 Stonechat. c10 Redwing and 4 Song Thrush. c50 Pied Wagtail on-site. 3 silent Chiffchaff with tit flocks. 3 Skylark included one singing.


Sunday 16/10/05 – A huge visible migration this morning, with birds heading upriver into wind, and fog pushing them low overhead: c500 Chaffinch, c20 Brambling, c150 Redwing, 1 Mistle Thrush, c20 Song Thrush, 3 Siskin, c20 Skylark, 7 Bullfinch, 100’s Starling. (Most of the positively id’d birds were in the half hour after the sun broke through the fog, and the birds were still low enough.) On the ground were: 2 Redpoll, 7 Song Thrush, 3 Redwing, c20 Meadow Pipit, c50 Pied Wagtail, 1 Wheatear, 2 Blackcap and 1 Grey Wagtail. The Water Rail was again at reed-edge of lake behind the hide. Only waders were: 6 Dunlin, c20 Turnstone, 5 Lapwing, 3 Curlew. Butterflies: Clouded Yellow, Tortoishell, Peacock, Large White.


AM reported: c1000 Chaffinch per hour early morning in fog, 1 Stonechat, c130 Wigeon, c60 Teal, c50 Lapwing.


Sparrowhawk bathing in rhyne, 16/10/05.

Sunday9/10/05 – AM + MP reported: 1 Kingfisher, 1 Little Egret, 2 Whinchat, 1 Stonechat, 2 Wheatear,.


Saturday 8/10/05 – A Water Rail was at the reed-edge of the lake behind the hide. A Mistle Thrush on lagoon 1 is sadly a rarity. A few Song Thrush have arrived also. Lagoon 1 is getting wet and muddy and attracted: 28 Lapwing, c150 Starling, c30 Pied Wagtail and c30 Linnet. Another 26 Lapwing on lagoon 3. Only 1 Stonechat seen on lagoon 2, where 3 Raven flew low over. Pair of Peregrine on the pylons. Also: a pair of Green Woodpecker, a Great Spotted Woodpecker and 3 Jay. 4 each of Ringed Plover and Dunlin. c250 Mallard, 9 Wigeon and a Shoveler. 6 Chiffchaff (inc. 1 singing). 15 Meadow Pipit by the water works and a Skylark over. c20 House Sparrow in hedge to South of lagoon 2. (52 species seen this morning.)


Photo of Red-necked Phalarope at Slimbridge in Pictures from other locations.


Sunday 2/10/05 – AM reported: 2 Whinchat, 1 Stonechat, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Shoveler, 1 Pintail.


Saturday 1/10/05 – 4+ Stonechat still on lagoon 2. 2 Swallow through. 4 Oystercatcher and c200 Curlew on the shore. Only 2 Redshank, 1 Great Black-backed Gull, 3 Common Gull and c50 Black-headed Gull on lagoon 3, where water still being pumped. 3 Chiffchaff included 2 singing. 2 Skylark flying over the river. Also 3 Jay and a Grey Wagtail. A juvenile Mute Swan on the lake. The white Aylesbury Duck back with Mallard at Shepperdine.


Thursday 29/9/05 – MG reported: 2 Little Egret on lagoon 3.


Sunday 25/9/05 – AM and MG reported: A Kingfisher along the rhyme. The Whinchat and 3 Stonechat on lagoon 2, a Wheatear, 6 Lapwing, 4 Ringed Plover, 6 Dunlin, 7 Wigeon, 3 Teal, 270 Mallard.


Saturday24/9/05 – A Whinchat was with 6 Stonechat at the north end of lagoon 2, and a Wheatear was on lagoon 3, by the hide. 500+ House Martin and a few Swallow were over lagoon 3, where water is being pumped in. c50 Turnstone, 6 Lapwing and 6 Dunlin were the only waders. The pair of Peregrine are still being vocal on the pylons. Wigeon increased to 5. A Raven was over lagoon 3, where there were 2 Grey Wagtail. A Chiffchaff singing still in sun. 10 Meadow Pipit through.


Turnstones on green buoy, 24/9/05.

Whinchat on lagoon 2, 24/9/05.

Saturday 17/9/05 – A Yellow Wagtail called continuously as it headed over downriver. Waders seen were c110 Dunlin, 10 Ringed Plover, c35 Turnstone and 2 Lapwing. Two Peregrine were very vocal on the pylons. 3 Jay seen on-site – less elusive during autumn. 6 Chiffchaff were with a tit flock. A Blackcap was singing its sub-song and another (male) seen. A Wigeon and 2 Teal were on the shore. A juvenile Mute Swan, a Little Grebe and only 1 Tufted Duck were on the pond. House Martin and Swallow are still passing through. Also a Great Spotted Woodpecker.


A picture of the juvenile Sabine’s Gull on the water  at Chew is at Pictures from other locations.


Saturday 10/9/05 – AM reported: 1 Jay, c40 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 40 Ringed Plover, 135 Dunlin, 16 Cormorant, 177 Mallard, 2 Wigeon, 60 Turnstone, 3 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 350 House Martin, 500 Swallow, 1 Tufted duck.


Sunday 4/9/05 – 2 juvenile Little Stint on sea-wall by lagoon 2 at High Tide, with 73 Dunlin, 21 Ringed Plover and an Oystercatcher. c50 Turnstone on the green buoy. 2 Whinchat in NE corner of Lagoon 2. Hirundines pushed low in misty conditions included: 1 Sand Martin, c100 Swallow and c300 House Martin (landing on the cooling towers). A Raven on Lagoon 1. At least 15 Chiffchaff, including 3 still singing. Two Great Spotted Woodpecker and 2 Green Woodpecker. High tide gull roost on lagoon 3 included: 267 Black-headed Gull and 2 Great Black-backed Gull.

MP also reported: 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Wheatear, 2 Grey Wagtail, 2 Lesser Whitethroat.


Little Stint (taken by MP), 3/9/05.

Saturday 3/9/05 – MP reported: 1 Little Stint (juv.), 1 Curlew Sandpiper (ad winter), 88 Dunlin, 66 Ringed Plover, c.45 Turnstone (on buoy), c.150 hirundines inc. 2+ Sand Martin,1 Yellow Wagtail, 2 Wigeon, 2 Teal.


Friday 2/9/05 – MP reported: 3 Curlew Sandpiper, 7 Knot, c100 Ringed Plover and c150 Dunlin.


Sunday28/8/05 – 2 Little Egret roosting on Lagoon 3. 3 Whinchat were elusive in the tall weeds at the NE corner of Lagoon 2. 2 Yellow Wagtail with the cows on lagoon 1. On the shore towards Shepperdine were c70 Ringed Plover, c50 Dunlin 2 Turnstone and an Oystercatcher. The high tide gull roost on lagoon 3 had 374 Black-headed Gull, 1 Common Gull, 8 Herring Gull and c10 Lesser Black-backed Gull. 8 Chiffchaff, with Long-tailed Tit flock, included one still singing. Plenty of Swallow and a few House Martin still around.

Also BK reported: 32 Pied Wagtail, 5 Linnet, 3 Stock Dove, 1 Jay.


Saturday27/8/05 - PC/TV reported: 1 Whinchat, 1 Wheatear, 1 Little Owl, 1 Green Woodpecker, 40 Turnstone (on the green buoy), 60 Mallard.


Sunday 21/8/05 – MP reported: An adult Yellow-legged Gull, 1500+ Black-headed Gull, 49 Common Gull, 1 Peregrine and c70 Dunlin.


Saturday 20/8/05 An adult (winter plumaged) Mediterranean Gull with 550 Black-headed Gull, and 10 Common Gull on Lagoon 3 at High Tide. 4 Sand Martin with c50 Swallow and 5 House Martin. 40 Ringed Plover, 20 Dunlin and 35 Turnstone on the shore. 10 Chiffchaff and 2 Whitethroat (juvs, lagoon 2). Also 156 Mallard, 2 Tufted Duck and a Green Woodpecker (juv.).


Mediterranean Gull, 20/8/05.

Note: Wednesday 3/8/05 – MP reported a Pectoral Sandpiper.


Friday 19/8/05 -  MP reported: A large evening gull roost;  3000+ Black-headed Gull, 1 juv. Mediterranean Gull, 98 Common Gull, 19 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Great Black-backed Gull, 2 Herring Gull. Also 72 Mallard and 1 Tufted Duck on pond.


Wednesday 17/8/05 – AM reported: 300 Swallow roosting in reeds, 5 House Martin, 2 Sand Martin, 12 Dunlin, 46 Ringed Plover, 35 Turnstone, 29 Common Gull.


Sunday 14/8/05 – AM reported: 139 Mallard, 1500 Black-headed Gull, 12 Dunlin, 1 Redshank, 10 Ringed Plover, 35 Turnstone. The Canada Goose family have left – probably to moult.


Sunday 7/8/05 – An Adder reported outside the hide.


Wednesday 3/8/05 – MP reported: A Pectoral Sandpiper seen in flight heading north.


Sunday 31/7/05 – AM reported: 2 Common Sandpiper, 20 Turnstone (on buoy), 1 Oystercatcher, 3 Ringed Plover, 9 Dunlin, 1 Little Grebe (juv.), 3 Redshank, Chiffchaff, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Peregrine and a Clouded-yellow butterfly.


Sunday 24/7/05 – 4 Common Sandpiper were on the shore at High Tide, with another on the lake behind the hide. A Peregrine was on a pylon and the 4 Canada Goose are still present on the lake. A shrew was watched on the path around Lagoon 2, accompanied by 3 Dunnock and a Reed Bunting.


Sunday 17/7/05 - An adult and juvenile Green Woodpecker were on the grass by the entrance. A Peregrine was heard – sounded like a juvenile calling for food, but not located. On the lake were 10 Tufted Duck and 4 Canada Goose, with the 2 juveniles well-grown now. On the shore were 2 Oystercatcher and c200 Curlew on the sandbanks. A shoal of mullet were in the shallows of the marine lagoon.


Sunday 10/7/05 – AM reported: 20 Shelduck (including 18 juvenile), 1 Oystercatcher, 8 Tufted Duck (no juveniles left – probably predated by Gulls, as witnessed last year), 1 Whimbrel (heard), 2 Common Gull, 600 Black-headed Gull, and a Ferret carrying a young in its mouth !


Sunday 3/7/05 – AM reported: 5 Canada Goose, 37 Shelduck (including broods of 18 + 9), 11 Tufted Duck (only one juvenile left). 425 Black-headed Gull, 3 Common Sandpiper.


Tuesday 28/6/05 – HL reported: A Grasshopper Warbler was reeling on the path to the hide, near Lagoon 3. Also 11 Tufted Duck, including 5 juveniles, on the lake.

Saturday 18/6/05 – Late update – AM reported: A Grasshopper Warbler was also reeling from Lagoon 3 in the evening.

Apologies for lack of updates in recent weeks, but I have been on holiday to Rhodes (Greece) and running the Edinburgh marathon ! Click link for a report on the birds of Rhodes

Saturday 18/6/05 – A Grasshopper Warbler was reeling loudly in the SW corner of Lagoon 2 at 7.30am. A Cetti’s Warbler has been long-awaited, and one finally called from the reeds at the lake behind the hide. On the shore were: 1 Oystercatcher, 5 Curlew and Shelduck crèches of 18 (Shepperdine) and 9 (Oldbury yacht club) ducklings. Two Peregrine on the pylons, and later one carried a still-flapping pigeon up. The adult Canada Goose pair now have 3 big goslings. 13 Whitethroat were singing, and 2 Lesser Whitethroat (ad + juv) were in the hedge at Lagoon 2. A Collared Dove again by Lagoon 2. Also Small Skipper butterfly.

Grasshopper Warbler, 18/6/05.


Saturday 11/6/05 – AM reported: Blackcap, Whitethroat and Reed Warbler all feeding young. 1 Oystercatcher and 8 Coot. Also 113 Bee Orchid and 85+ Pyramidal Orchid flower spikes.


Sunday 5/6/05 – HL reported: Green  and Great Spotted Woodpecker and c10 House Martin.


Saturday 4/6/05 – AM reported: 35 Shelduck, including a crèche of 17 ducklings. 1 Oystercatcher, 12 Tufted Duck, and a Kestrel nest in the south cooling tower.


Saturday 21/5/05 – Large numbers of Hirundines flying low in showery weather: c500 House Martin, c50 Swift, c20 Swallow and a Sand Martin. 2 Collared Dove on-site are unusual. A single Teal and 2 Lesser Whitethroat on Lagoon 1. The Canada Goose pair still have 3 gosling. AM reported 2 Grey Plover (including a summer plumaged male) and a Great Spotted Woodpecker.


Saturday 14/5/05 – The Peregrine pair put on an exciting display, attacking a flock of Racing Pigeon flying low up-river. They worked together to single out one bird and then took it in turns for one to chase from behind, while the other gained a bit of height and dived at it. The pigeon managed to escape by landing on the jetty. A Sedge Warbler was again at the south end of Lagoon 2 – in the small triangular reedbed, and the Lesser Whitethroat sung from Lagoon 1. The Canada Goose pair have three goslings. Also 9+ Tufted Duck on the pond. 3 Swift were over Lagoon 3 and 8 Swallow were flying round and collecting mud from river. Also a Jay and 2 Great Black-backed Gull (ad + juv). No Teal seen. AM found 2 Spotted Flycatcher and 3 Whimbrel.


Thursday 12/5/05 – A dog-walker heard a Cuckoo. They also heard one ‘ a couple of weeks ago’.


Saturday 7/5/05 – In the bushes at the south end of Lagoon 2 were: 1 Sedge Warbler, 1 Reed Warbler, 1 Lesser Whitethroat and 3 House Sparrow (unusual on-site). The Canada Goose pair now have 2 young. 35+ House Martin and 30+ Swallow passed through. 12 Tufted Duck and 2 Coot chicks were on the pond. 5 Great Black-backed Gull flew up-river.


Saturday 30/4/05 – 1 Lesser Whitethroat singing at Lagoon 1. 12 Whitethroat singing on-site. c10 Reed Warbler now at Lagoon 2. 1 Whimbrel, 5 Dunlin and 3 Ringed Plover on the shore. Swallows and House Martins through. 15 Tufted Duck on the pond, with the Canada Goose still nest-sitting.


Friday 29/4/05MP reported 110+ Whimbrel between Littleton and Aust in the evening, plus 1 Bar-tailed Godwit and 3 Lesser Whitethroat.


Monday 25/4/05 – MP reported: 600+ Swallow per hour moving North, with a few Sand Martin and Swift. 150 House Martin around the towers. On Lagoon 1 were: 2 Common Sandpiper, 6 Shoveler, 32 Teal and 12 Shelduck. Also 1 Hobby, 1 Peregrine and 15 Goldfinch.

Saturday 23/4/05House Martins have arrived, with about 50 heading up-river into wind, with 9 Swallow. 4 Whitethroat and a Reed Warbler singing. A pair of Mute Swan on the river. Also a Green Woodpecker and the Canada Goose pair. 3 Coot chicks on the pond, but no sign of the Mallard ducklings on Lagoon 1 (prone to Gull predation, and not helped by disturbance from dogs off leads).

Green Woodpecker on telegraph pole, 23/4/05.

Sunday 17/4/05 – A Tree Pipit in an old oak at SE corner of Lagoon 2. The first Whitethroat was on Lagoon 2. The Garganey was still on Lagoon 1. Also a Wheatear and a Mute Swan flying up-river.

Saturday 16/4/05 – The Garganey is still on Lagoon 1, with the pair of Pintail. A Reed Warbler was singing (and seen well) from bushes to the south of Lagoon 2 (ignoring the perfectly reasonable-looking reedbed 25 yards away !). 3 Swallow flew through. There are two early broods of young: 4 Coot chicks and 8 Mallard ducklings. 5 Ringed Plover, 6 Dunlin and 12 Shoveler on the shore. The Canada Goose pair are still nest-sitting on the pond, with 12 Tufted Duck. Numbers of singing Blackcap increased to 8. Also 2 Jay, 2 male Pheasant and 2 Orange-Tip butterflies. AM reported 2 Whimbrel and a Wheatear.

Garganey at Lagoon 1, on 13/4/05. (Photo by MP)

Wednesday 13/4/05 – A Garganey and 56 Teal (MP).

Saturday 9/4/05 – AM reported: 1 Garganey, 7 Blackcap, 66 Teal, 2 Raven, 2 Pintail, c40 Turnstone, 11 Tufted Duck.

Friday 8/4/05 – The male Garganey is still around – on lagoon 1, with c25 Teal, 2 Pintail, 16 Shoveler and 10 Shelduck. 4 Blackcap singing now. A Peregrine on a pylon. 10 Tufted Duck and nesting Canada Goose on the pond behind the hide – also a Little Grebe heard there, recently.

Tuesday 5/4/05 – A male Garganey was on the shore at Shepperdine (at 11am) – found earlier by MP on Lagoon 3. Also a pair of Pintail, 10 Shoveler and 4 Oystercatcher on the shore. A large count of c500 Curlew on the mud-flats. A Stonechat from the hide, a pair of Canada Goose nesting on the island and 10 Tufted Duck. Also 2 Linnet (not seen for a while), 4 Willow Warbler, 2 Blackcap and a Green Woodpecker. A weasel was on the path round Lagoon 2.

Male Garganey asleep with Teal, on 5/4/05.

Sunday 3/4/05 – MP reported: 30 Swallow, 10 Sand Martin, 7 Ringed Plover, 3 Dunlin, 2 Pintail, 11 Shoveler, 84 Teal and 29 Wigeon.

Saturday 2/4/05 – MP watched an Osprey over the marine reservoir at 7pm. Also 3 White Wagtail with c25 Pied Wagtail on Lagoon 1.

[See Pictures from other locations for photos of the Common Scoters at Cheddar Reservoir on 31/3.]

Thursday 31/3/05 – 4 Sand Martin flew over Lagoon 1, heading NE, in the mist. 5 Pintail (inc. 2 male), 10 Shoveler and 10 Redshank also on Lagoon 1, until all flushed by dog-walkers. 2 Blackcap now singing. A pair of Canada Goose are nest-building on the island behind the hide. 7 Tufted Duck on the pond. AM saw a Swallow over Lagoon 1 later on.

Pintail at Lagoon 1, on 31/3/05.

Saturday 26/3/05 – A walk round with AM produced: 5 Willow Warbler, 1 Blackcap and lots of Chiffchaff all singing; a Water Rail on Lagoon 1 (unusual on this lagoon); a Collared Dove (also unusual on-site); c40 Turnstone roosting on the green buoy at High Tide (the only other wader seen was a Redshank); 13 Shoveler, 1 Pintail, 10 Tufted Duck, 1 Little Owl,  1 Peregrine, 2 Great Black-backed Gull, 3 Skylark and 2 Reed Bunting. 2 Brimstone and 3 Small Tortoiseshell butterflies. Also, 2 Hares on the mud of lagoon 3.

Wednesday 23/3/05 – A Willow Warbler singing was my earliest ever. A Blackcap and 14 Chiffchaff were also singing. A juvenile Mute Swan sitting on the mud along the shore was unusual. 3 Oystercatcher there. A Water Rail flew across a gap in the reeds on Lagoon 2 and skulked among the stems. 6 Buzzard circled and ‘mewed’ together, including one which flew over the river from the Welsh side. 6 Tufted Duck were on the pond. Cowslips flowering. [Water still being pumped into Lagoon 3.]

Monday 21/3/05- 14 Chiffchaff singing this morning. A flock of 35 Fieldfare were bathing in puddles. A Raven and a Peregrine flew over. A female Pintail was on the shore with 15 Shoveler. The numbers of ducks and gulls are increasing due to continued pumping of water into Lagoon 3. Also: 8 Oystercatcher, 4 Stock Dove, 1 Green Woodpecker and 7 Tufted Duck.

Fieldfare preening, on 21/3/05.

Sunday 20/3/05 – AM reported: 5 Golden Plover, 10 Oystercatcher, 6 Ringed Plover, 15 Dunlin, 40 Turnstone, 7 Chiffchaff, 2 Pintail, 5 Shoveler, 149 Wigeon, 93 Teal, 46 Shelduck, 49 Mallard, 8 Tufted Duck and 2 Little Owl.

Friday 18/3/05 – A Saker-type Falcon flew across the river to the Welsh side. I also saw this bird at Frampton 100-acre on Wednesday. It is a large, light-coloured, falcon. The back is mid-brown, with a greyer upper-tail. Underneath is creamish, and it has a light head, with a hint of a brown mask and moustache (crossed with a Lanner or Peregrine ?). It looks Buzzard-like when perched. No jessies seen. (A similar bird was in the area last year.) Spring truly sprung today with 2 Chiffchaff singing, 2 Brimstone butterflies, bees and hoverflies. 7 Stonechat together on lagoon 2. A Little Grebe was on the pond, with 7 Tufted Duck (4 male) and 2 Canada Goose. Also 18 Shoveler, 4 Oystercatcher, a Peregrine and a Jay. [NB. Water is being pumped into lagoon 3, which usually attracts some birds.]

Wednesday 16/3/05 – 5 Pintail (2 male) and 18 Shoveler were flushed from Lagoon 1 by dog walkers. An Oystercatcher, 10 Redshank and c40 Common Gull were along the shore. Also Great Spotted Woodpecker, Peregrine and 4 Bullfinch. TL reported: 3 Stonechat, a Little Grebe, 5 Tufted Duck and Rooks nest-building.

Monday 14/3/05 – TL reported: 2 Little Owl, 1 Snipe and 1 Stonechat.

Saturday 12/3/05 – AM reported: 6 Jack Snipe, 26 Snipe, 9 Turnstone, 10 Redshank, 1 Pintail (fem), 8 Tufted Duck, 13 Shoveler, 88 Wigeon, 31 Teal, 53 Mallard and 2 Great Black-backed Gull.

Wednesday 9/3/05Blackcap, Reed Bunting and Skylark all singing at Lagoon 2 in the Spring-like weather. A pair of Little Owl in oak tree to North of site. Plenty of Redwing still around. 423 Curlew on the mudflats; 10 Redshank and 13 Shoveler on the shore. 2 Water Rail heard on Lagoon 2, and a Snipe flushed. 5 Bullfinch eating tree buds and blossom. Also 2 Bumblebees on the wing.

[NB. The possible exotic Starling species was identified as a ‘partial albino’ (i.e. leucistic) Blackbird when seen in good light.]

Saturday 5/3/05 – AM reported: A Little Egret, 16 Shoveler, 2 Stonechat, 258 Wigeon, 50 Teal, 21 Redshank, 95 Dunlin.

Thursday 3/3/05 – A Short-eared Owl was flying along the coast by Lagoon 3 at 3:15pm, before going to roost in reeds just to the south of the Power Station (by the large yellow boating signs with a black diagonal stripe). Now 15 Shoveler on Lagoon 1. Also 1 Stonechat, 2 Snipe and a Green Woodpecker.

Wednesday 2/3/05 – MP reported 13 Shoveler on Lagoon 1 with c250 Wigeon. Also on Sunday: 2 Rock Pipit, 2 Stonechat, c1500 Common Gull roosting on the marine reservoir, and a Peregrine. Also, a possible exotic Starling species roosting in the hedge (with Starlings) between the farm and the Water Treatment Works about a mile inland of the Power Station – white head with glossy body.

Monday 28/2/05Another cold day. The male Peregrine was eating a Feral Pigeon on a pylon, with the female watching (see photos). Also pairs of Grey Wagtail and Great Spotted Woodpecker at Lagoon 2, and 9 Snipe flushed from there. Lagoon 1 held 11 Shoveler (7 male) with numbers of Teal and Wigeon, plus 48 Redwing and 23 Fieldfare. On the shore were c140 Curlew (on exposed sand-banks), c110 Dunlin, 15 Redshank and 1 Oystercatcher. Only 1 Tufted Duck (male) on half frozen pond.


Male Peregrine on Feral Pigeon kill, with female watching nearby, 28/2/05.

Saturday 26/2/05AM reported: 2 Little Owl, 2 Stonechat, 87 Wigeon, 65 Teal, 52 Mallard, 5 Shoveler, 3 Shelduck, 9 Tufted Duck (5 male), 1 Mute Swan, 1 Peregrine, 2 Turnstone, 14 Redshank, 4 Curlew and 2 Dunlin.

Wednesday 23/2/05 – A cold East wind swept a snow shower down the estuary. 2 Stonechat (ad + juv) on the seaweed dump at Lagoon 2, and a Mute Swan with 11 Tufted Duck on the pond. The shore held 3 Oystercatcher, 118 Lapwing, c25 Dunlin and 6 Shoveler. 5 Robin together on grass may have been migrants. 2 male Bullfinch were singing in the sun. Also a Green Woodpecker and 2 Jay.

 [See Latest Site Species List for a NEW list of the species seen at Oldbury Power Station during 2004.]

Saturday 19/2/05 – In a bitter North wind, 2 Raven headed upriver, as did regular groups of 5-10 large gulls (c25 Herring and c25 Lesser Black-Backed). 3 Water Rail ‘sharmed’ from the reeds on Lagoon 2. A Peregrine was on a pylon. 2 Mute Swan were on Lagoon 1 and 10 Tufted Duck (6 male) reappeared on the pond. Also: 2 Great Black-backed Gull (ads), 2 Song Thrush, 2 Bullfinch, 4 Shoveler, 15 Shelduck, 1 Oystercatcher and 1 Green Woodpecker (heard).

 [See Pictures from other locations for a photo of the Glaucous Gull at Nether Stowey. The gull is quite tame and tends to stay in the field behind the Farm Shop. Also a photo of the male Black Redstart at Brean Down. At least 2 other female/juvs were with it, in the cove behind the Café.]

Sunday 13/2/05 – The weather gave four seasons in one day; hail, sleet, snow, rain and sunshine! The Peregrine pair performed well in the wind, around the cooling towers. Also, 2 Great Black-backed Gull (ads), 4 Shoveler (Lagoon 1), 1 Green Woodpecker and a Jay. A Skylark was on Lagoon 2.

Saturday12/2/05 – AM counted: 24 Snipe, 161 Wigeon, 98 Teal, 47 Mallard, 19 Shelduck and 4 Shoveler.

Thursday 10/2/05 - 1 Knot, c25 Turnstone, c20 Redshank, 6 Shoveler (4 male) on Lagoon 1, 2 Tufted Duck, c55 Fieldfare, c25 Redwing, c20 Blackbird and 2 Song Thrush (2 singing). Blackthorn in blossom.

Saturday5/2/05 – A grey day, but with some variety – A Rock Pipit was on the breakwater; waders on the shore included: a Knot, 28 Redshank, 7 Oystercatcher, c100 Lapwing and c50 Dunlin. Also 71 Common Gull and 3 Great Black-backed Gull (ads). 4 Shoveler (3 male) on Lagoon 1. Green and Great Spotted Woodpecker over Lagoon 2. Also, 3 Tufted Duck, a Jay, 13 Long-tailed Tit, 3 Stock Dove and 2 Song Thrush singing. Blackthorn in flower indicates spring is round the corner.

Knot on shore, 5/2/05.

Sunday 30/1/05 – AM reported: 2 Stonechat, 1 Water Rail, 4 Shoveler, 377 Teal, 142 Wigeon, 160 Mallard, 11 Shelduck and a Goldcrest.

Saturday 29/1/05 – 5 male Pintail circled the tower before heading up-river. 4 Shoveler were on Lagoon 1. A Skylark going over was the first since the autumn. 2 Stonechat (ad + juv) were on the shore. 2 Peregrine and 2 Raven again. Also seen: 1 Oystercatcher, 3 Tufted Duck, 1 Green Woodpecker, 2 Jay, c10 Fieldfare and c50 Redwing. A Water Rail heard on Lagoon 2 again.

Saturday 22/1/05 –A Mistle Thrush in the old orchard to South of Lagoon 2, is a bit of a rarity these days ! The Peregrine pair were on pylons again, with 2 Raven close-by. The number of Shoveler increased to 6 (4 male) on the shore at Low Tide; with 11 Shelduck, 20 Dunlin, 9 Redshank, a Stonechat (juv.) and a 1w Great Black-backed Gull. 9 Bullfinch included a flock of 6 by the wildflower meadow, with c50 Redwing and a Great-spotted Woodpecker. 2 Jay and a Sparrowhawk by the pond, where 2 Tufted Duck (pair) have arrived. 2 Water Rail heard in reeds on Lagoon 2. Also 8 Stock Dove (Lagoon 3) and I photographed a Little Owl in the hedge at the NE boundary of OPS:

Monday 17/1/05 – D.B.P.S (led by HL) recorded 40 species, including: Gadwall, Oystercatcher, Snipe, Mute Swan and c300 Dunlin.

Sunday 16/1/05 – A pair of Peregrine on the pylon over the road from the hide. At HT on Lagoon 3: c500 Lapwing, c200 Dunlin and c100 Black-headed Gull. 3 Shoveler (inc. 2 male), a Black-tailed Godwit and 15 Redshank on the shore. 4 Stock Dove on Lagoon 1. Also Raven, Jay, Reed Bunting and Great-spotted Woodpecker.

AM recorded: A Pintail (fem), 2 Stonechat, a large count of 83 Redshank, 20 Snipe, 1 Jack Snipe, 10 Turnstone, 137 Wigeon, 255 Teal and 271 Mallard.

Thursday 13/1/05 – TL reported: 1 Little Owl, c300 Teal and c150 Wigeon. Also 10 Bullfinch nearby in The Anchor carpark.

Saturday 8/1/05 – The Little Egret was seen again; in flight over pond behind hide. Along the shore were: 1 Knot, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 10 Curlew and a Great Black-backed Gull (ad). The Water Rail was heard in the reeds on Lagoon 2. Also 4 Bullfinch and 15 Long-tailed Tit.

Monday 3/1/05 - AM recorded: 1600 Lapwing, 130 Mallard, 320 Teal, 150 Wigeon, 20 Turnstone, 23 Redshank, 14 Shelduck and a Jay.

Sunday 2/1/05 – The High Tide roost on Lagoon 3 was large again, with c1700 Lapwing, c150 Dunlin and c150 Black-headed Gull. These were all flushed by a Peregrine. Along the shore, towards Shepperdine, were: 4 Knot, 8 Oystercatcher, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Turnstone, 6 Redshank and a Raven. Lagoon 2 held 2 Stonechat and a Water Rail (‘sharming’). Two Jay and a Little Egret were by the pond behind the hide:-

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