January to December 2006


2010 sightings

2009 sightings

2008 sightings

2007 sightings

2006 sightings

2005 sightings

2004 sightings

Total of 142 species seen at the site in 2006 (see 2006 Site Species List for details). With my personal total for the site in 2006 at 134 species.


Sunday 31/12/06 – MP reported: an adult Little Gull in the roost on lagoon 3 and then on the lake, at 3.45pm. Also 10+ Kittiwake in strong winds. Plus: 3 Stonechat, 6 Shoveler, 42 Turnstone and 31 Redshank.

AM reported: 1 Golden Plover, 135 Lapwing, 98 Curlew, 2 Pintail and c50 Stock Dove.


Friday 29/12/06 – An adult Little Gull* went ‘wheeling’ upriver at 12:35pm in a strong S/SW wind. Two flocks of 15 and 9 Fieldfare headed SW. A Chiffchaff was in scrub along the main rhine. Also: 7 Shoveler, c200 Teal, 1 white ‘Aylesbury’ duck, 2 Stonechat and a Snipe.

(* Correction: Misidentified as a Kittiwake when briefly ‘scoped as it passed. But later sightings on estuary at Slimbridge confirmed.)


Wednesday27/12/06  -AM reported: 1 Raven, c400 Lapwing, 197 Mallard, c850 Dunlin, 41 Redshank, 133 Wigeon, 38 Turnstone, 1 Water Rail and 1 Snipe.


Tuesday 26/12/06 – At least 1 male Yellowhammer in hedges to SW of lagoon 3, near flooded fields, where: c300 Lapwing, c300 Dunlin and 12 Skylark. Lagoon 1 had c200 Lapwing, c300 Dunlin and c15 Redshank before being flushed by dog walker. c25 Stock Dove and 8 Pheasant on lagoon 3. 6+ Song Thrush in hedges along the shore showed an influx. Also: 5 Stonechat, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker and 2 Snipe.


Sunday 24/12/06 – A Water Rail was seen in the reeds on lagoon 2, and another heard. A Grey Wagtail was on the shore by the Water Works. Lagoon 1 had c200 Dunlin, 18 Redshank and c100 Lapwing. There was a movement of c200 Herring Gull (plus a few Lesser Black-backed Gull) in small flocks going low upriver.

MP reported: c400 Lapwing, 2 Golden Plover, c150 Dunlin, 24 Skylark, c100 Chaffinch, 2 Raven, 25 Stock Dove and 22 Redshank on flooded fields to south of lagoon 3. Also, on lagoon 1: 248 Dunlin, 214 Lapwing and 19 Redshank. A walker reported 5 Swan sp. in fields at Shepperdine during the week.


Friday 22/12/06 – Dense fog with visibility at 100 yards this morning. I was expecting little, but pleasantly surprised to find that the birds were more placid than usual (and no-one else seen). 2 male Goldeneye flew past me upriver (they were just a black and white blur, but id confirmed by the whistling wings). The Turnstone flock were roosting on the shore at Shepperdine, allowing a count of 54 to be made, and also 6 Oystercatcher there. There were 16 Canada Goose on lagoon 1 (probably a site record). 4 Rock Pipit on the shore is a good count. Also: 5+ Stonechat.

Lake behind hide in fog (22/12/06)



Sunday 17/12/06 – A Guillemot was a surprise find ! It was floating slowly down-river just below the tidal reservoir when found at about 2pm, and then drifted up-river with the tide. It is the first to be positively identified at the site, although a Guillemot/Razorbill was seen in September 1994 (from AM’s records). The unidentified duck species was again present on the tidal reservoir (photos below). It is most likely a cross-breed; Chestnut Teal x ?. In the windless evening, the gull roost on the estuary was very visible and held 5,000+ birds, including c2,000 Common Gull and c2,000 Black-headed Gull. There were 173 Curlew roosting on lagoon 3. A Mute Swan pair were back on the lake behind the hide. Also: 1 Knot (Shepperdine), 1 Rock Pipit, c300 Pied Wagtail (roosting), 3 Stonechat, 9 Oystercatcher and c25 Redshank.

Guillemot, close in to shore (17/12/06)


Unidentified duck sp. - Chestnut Teal x ? (17/12/06)



Saturday 16/12/06 – Good counts of 7 wintering Stonechat and 12 Oystercatcher were the only birds of note.

AM reported a Chiffchaff.


Sunday 10/12/06 – A Black Redstart was on the fence by the water works (probably first winter male, with pale wing panel). Two Siskin and a Redpoll were with a flock of 5 Goldfinch on alders by pond at south corner of lagoon 3. Also a very large flock of c100 Stock Dove in flight, there.

[No sign of the escaped duck today, but I saw it at dusk last night. Strange, but nice, looking thing. It is most like a male Brown Teal: Wigeon-sized, green head, steel-grey bill (with thin black line down it), dark reddish eye, red-brown chest, grey-brown flanks, dark brown back, black tail with russet red undertail and vent, with a light patch (off-white) between vent and belly. It also had a manned crest, shaped just like a Wood Duck (but all green), which only showed when it extended its neck to call (thin double-noted whistle) and, I think, display. It had a white belly (like Wigeon), and a long tail; between female and male Pintail in length. I also saw it fly a short distance - it didn't have any white wing-bars, but may have had an indistinct buff wing-bar.]


Saturday 9/12/06 – None of the seabirds seen along the river all week, despite a dawn start. A pair of Mute Swan flew into Lagoon 1 and then onto the lake, including one with an orange darvic ring on left leg (unable to read, but almost certainly ‘H97’ last seen briefly in October). Also 5 Cormorant migrating downriver at 200m height. Lots of Redwing over and in bushes, but only 3 Fieldfare. 4 Water Rail heard on lagoon 2. 6 Reed Bunting by lagoon 3.

AM reported c1000 Lapwing and c600 Dunlin on flooded fields between OPS and the yacht club; 1 Jack Snipe and c30 Snipe flushed along shore there. Also an unidentified escaped duck sp. (possibly Chestnut Teal).


Wednesday 6/12/06 – HL reported: 18 Redshank, 8 Shoveler, 20 Curlew, 30+ Turnstone, c300 Common Gull (on river), c300 Teal/Wigeon and 2 Stonechat.


Saturday 2/12/06 – 6 Stonechat around the site, and good numbers of waders: c200 Curlew, c300 Lapwing, c200 Dunlin and 3 Snipe. There were c130 Common Gull roosting on the tidal reservoir. Also: Great Spotted Woodpecker and Peregrine.


Tuesday 28/11/06 – There were 6 Pintail on the tidal reservoir (including 4 males). A Coot was on the lake, which is the first since the last disappeared after 15th October – may be linked to an algal bloom. There were 4 Reed Bunting and c35 Stock Dove in the field next to lagoon 3. Other birds similar to Sunday (but the Kingfisher not seen). A weasel crossed the path around lagoon 2.


Sunday 26/11/06 – A Kingfisher was along the main rhine early this morning; it briefly flew to the lake, before flying down the rhine towards lagoon 2. The high tide roost at Lagoon 3 had: c300 Lapwing, c200 Dunlin, c350 Black-headed Gull, 1 Great Black-backed Gull (a first winter), 1 Redshank and c30 Linnet. There were 23 Redshank on lagoon 1 and 8 Oystercatcher flew down-river. Also: 2 Water Rail (heard, lagoon 2), 7 Skylark, 1 Mistle Thrush, 4 Stonechat (2 each on lagoons 2 and 3), 3 Jay, a Little Owl (heard) and a fox. Some interesting behaviour from a flock of c15 House Sparrow near the stables to south of lagoon 2; 3 of them flew up high, right over lagoon 2 (where they are rarely seen) and then back down to the hedge where they started – irruptive behaviour ?

AM reported: 2 Snipe, c180 Teal, 16 Curlew, c150 Wigeon, c200 Mallard, c50 Stock Dove, c260 Common Gull (on the river) and a fresh Brimstone butterfly !


Thursday 23/11/06 – MW reported: on stubble field to south of lagoon 3; 4 Yellowhammer, 20+ Reed Bunting, c30 Skylark and c20 Chaffinch. Also: 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Spotted Redshank (lagoon 3), 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Pintail, 2 Water Rail, 458 Lapwing, 21 Redshank, c160 Teal, c180 Dunlin, 29 Turnstone and c185 Wigeon.


Tuesday 21/11/06 – MW reported: 4 Siskin, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Chiffchaff, 150 Teal, c200 Dunlin, 29 Turnstone and c170 Wigeon.


Sunday 19/11/06 – A large cold-weather movement overnight evidenced by c200 Redwing, 50+ Blackbird and 2 Blackcap refuelling on berries in the hedges along the main rhine. The Spotted Redshank (probable, at distance) was with c15 Redshank at Shepperdine. 2 Raven flew over, low and calling. Also: 5 Stonechat and c100 Dunlin.

MW reported: 2 Yellowhammer, 15 Reed Bunting, 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Shoveler and 16 Turnstone.

AM reported: 2 Tufted Duck on the tidal reservoir, 325 Lapwing, 21 Dunlin, 77 Teal, 175 Mallard, 164 Wigeon, 21 Curlew (+ 84 on mudflats), 7 Oystercatcher and a Peregrine.


Saturday 18/11/06 – Quiet and rainy at low tide: 1 Oystercatcher, c100 Dunlin, c200 Lapwing, 2 Stonechat, 2 Shoveler and c300 Teal. At least 1 Fieldfare with c10 Redwing. Also: c20 Pied Wagtail and c10 Meadow Pipit on dead grass in meadow.


Sunday 12/11/06 – HL reported: Peregrine, Green Woodpecker, c20 Redshank, c60 Dunlin, c300 Teal, c150 Wigeon, 6 Shelduck and c150 Lapwing.


Saturday 11/11/06 – An adult winter Mediterranean Gull was on the water at lagoon 3, and c420 Lapwing were there. The Spotted Redshank was with 18 Redshank, c100 Lapwing, c20 Dunlin, 7 Shoveler and a Pintail on lagoon 1, before everything flushed by a large female Peregrine flying low over, and on down-river. There were lots of Redwing in the hedges. Also: 4 Stonechat and 1 Snipe.

Late report from MP on 4/11/06: 2 Brambling.


Sunday 5/11/06 – All the birds seen were at Shepperdine: 300+ Dunlin, 2 Oystercatcher, c250 Black-headed Gull, c50 Common Gull (attracted by ploughing in field nearby), 11 Shoveler, 1 Raven and a Peregrine through. The Peregrine pair were reported on the tower earlier.


Saturday 4/11/06 – A very misty morning. 4 Rock Pipit were by lagoon 1 outfall. c40 Fieldfare went over, and a Mistle Thrush was in a field to south of lagoon 2. A total of 6 Stonechat were seen. A Water Rail was heard on lagoon 3.


Tuesday 31/10/06 – MP reported a Mandarin on lagoon 1 (last one at the site was 4 Nov 2000, according to AM’s records), and the Spotted Redshank still there.


Sunday 29/10/06 – The Spotted Redshank and the Black-tailed Godwit were on lagoon 1 again, with c15 Redshank and 9 Snipe. At Shepperdine were 8 Pintail, 8 Shoveler and c150 Teal. Lagoon 3 had c200 Lapwing, and on the shore nearby were 40 Redshank and c50 Dunlin. Flying over were: 2 Fieldfare, 7 Skylark and c50 Redwing. Also: 5 Stonechat, 3 Jay, 1 Peregrine and 2 Green Woodpecker. 3 Red Admiral and 1 Clouded yellow butterflies, plus some dragonflies still flying. Also a Hare.

The Teal with red bill-tag (see 15/10/06, below) was marked on 29/12/05 at S. Jacinto Dunes Nature Reserve in Portugal (1307km from OPS), and was present there until 3/2/06.


Saturday 28/10/06 – Lagoon 1 had: 1 Spotted Redshank, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Bahama Pintail, 5 Pintail, 6 Shoveler, c10 Dunlin, 4 Snipe, 12 Redshank, c50 Wigeon and c100 Teal. At lagoon 3 were: 3 Pintail, c100 Wigeon, c100 Teal and 2 Snipe. At Shepperdine were 20 Dunlin and 6 Ringed Plover. [A walker reported a flock of c30 White-fronted Goose in fields 1 mile upriver of Shepperdine.]


Friday 27/10/06 – Lagoons 1 and 3 both suffered disturbance this morning from OPS staff and a dog-walker. Flushed to the shore were: 1 Bahama Pintail, 6 Shoveler, 1 Tufted Duck, 12 Redshank and 6 Snipe. There were 6+ Stonechat along the shore, and 200+ Redwing overhead (mainly). MP reported c70 Dunlin on lagoon 3 earlier.


Thursday 26/10/06 – The Bahama Pintail (aka White-checked Pintail) was on lagoon 3, with c100 Wigeon, c100 Mallard (including a white ‘Aylesbury’ duck) , 3 Pintail, 1 Oystercatcher, 1 Snipe, c200 Lapwing, c200 Black-headed Gull and c50 Linnet. 200+ Redwing and 2 Fieldfare flew over, along with a few small flocks of Chaffinch and Greenfinch. Also: 2 Raven, 1 Peregrine, 3 Shoveler, 2 Jay and 16 Redshank.

Bahama Pintail which has a silvery back, lagoon 3 (26/10/06)



Tuesday 24/10/06 – A Little Egret was with the ducks on lagoon 3. Also there: 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Pintail and a Water Rail (heard). Lagoon 1 held 6 Shoveler, 14 Redshank and 2 Snipe. c300 Lapwing on both. A flock of 22 Redwing went over, and 3 were in hedges. Also: 2 Stonechat (lagoon 2) and a Peregrine on a pylon.


Monday 23/10/06 – A late Wheatear was on lagoon 1 this morning. In the hedge there, a Little Owl was being loudly scolded by a flock of: 2 Goldcrest, 1 Blackcap, 1 Song Thrush, 2 Blackbird, 12 Greenfinch, 2 Chaffinch, 2 Dunnock and a Wren ! Another 4 Blackcap seen, and a Chiffchaff. The Ruff is still on lagoon 3 (but all ducks flushed by security patrol). The shore held c130 Dunlin, c40 Redshank and 4 Pintail. Also: 2 Grey Wagtail, 4 Stonechat and 19 Cormorant heading low down-river in V-formation was an impressive sight.


Sunday 22/10/06 – Another good day, with 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 1 Grey Plover, 57 Redshank and 15 Dunlin all in flight at high tide. Then a single, late, House Martin flying around the tops of trees to south of lagoon 2. Topped off by a Ruff on lagoon 3 – my 130th species at the site this year. Also:  1 Tufted Duck (male on lake), 5 Stonechat and a Water Rail heard on lagoon 3.

MP reported, on the flooded lagoon 3: 500+ Wigeon, c200 Teal (+98 on lagoon 1), 250+ Mallard, 6 Pintail, 1 Bahama Pintail, 70 Dunlin, 150 Black-headed Gull and 4 Snipe (+ 12 on lagoon 1).


Saturday21/10/06 – Some interesting birds today; the best of which were 2 exceptionally late Sandwich Tern (adult + juvenile) sat on the shore and then on the tidal reservoir with 2500+ Black-headed Gull and c500 Common Gull. They were last seen at 17:50 flying slowly down-river close-in to shore (past jetty) – may have roosted on lagoon 3 ? A Spotted Redshank was with 22 Redshank on lagoon 1. Earlier, 4 Greenshank were ‘tu, tu, tu’-ing on the shore by lagoon 3, before flying off towards the yacht club. The leucistic Teal is still on lagoon 1. A Tawny Owl flew out of its roost at 18:40, across the rhine (over the road from the hide), and sat in the dead tree by the road, briefly.

MP+AP reported, on lagoon 3: 1 Ruff, 6 Pintail, c200 Wigeon and 28 Dunlin.


Friday 20/10/06 – MP reported lots of birds on the flooded lagoon 3: 283 Wigeon, 216 Mallard (including a white one), 38+ Teal, 6 Pintail, 1 Bahama Pintail (seen recently at Severnside) and c2500 Black-headed Gull.


Monday 16/10/06 – A Water Rail was piping in the reeds on lagoon 2. On the shore were: 2 Black-tailed Godwit, c60 Dunlin and 15 Redshank. The leucistic Teal was still on lagoon 1, and a Snipe was there. At least 3 Stonechat were on lagoon 2.


The Teal with the red bill-tag (or ‘nasal saddle’), which I think reads ‘F5’ (not ‘7F’ as reported earlier), probably came from a Portuguese marking scheme - http://pt-ducks.naturlink.pt/


Sunday 15/10/06 – A large movement of Chaffinch this morning in the mist, with 100+ per hour moving low NE (upriver) into wind. Also in same direction: 2 Redwing, 1 Yellowhammer and 4 Mistle Thrush. On lagoon 1 were 2 Pintail (+ 1 on lagoon 3), 3 Shoveler and c160 Teal, including two odd ones; the light-coloured leucistic one, and another with a bright red bill-tag ‘F5’ (see photos below). A first winter Little Grebe was on the lake behind the hide. Also: 3 Snipe, 3 Oystercatcher, c70 Lapwing, c20 Dunlin, c30 Redshank and 4 Stonechat (lagoon 2). And a  Red Admiral butterfly.

Two odd Teal; left-hand photo shows leucistic Teal with normal Teal and right-hand photo shows one with a red bill-tag ‘F5’, (15/10/06).           


Saturday 14/10/06 – The misty conditions pushed some migrants low: 60+ Chaffinch (in small flocks heading NE, upriver), 5 Song Thrush (heading SW – and another 7 on-site) and 10+ Skylark (including 3 over the river and heading S). 2 Green Sandpiper were flushed from lagoon 3 by security staff. There were 73 Redshank (a high count), c20 Dunlin, c50 Lapwing, 3 Turnstone and 2 Ringed Plover on the shore. Also on the shore were c50 Wigeon and c100 Teal, including a light-coloured leucistic bird. The Mute Swan pair were on the river. Also: 3 Stonechat (2 on lagoon 2, 1 on lagoon 3), 2 Snipe (over), c50 Goldfinch and c30 Linnet.


AM reported (WeBS count): 6 Black-tailed Godwit, 419 Mallard, 125 Teal, 169 Wigeon, 7 Shelduck, 3 Shoveler, 4 Snipe, 79 Lapwing, 2 Oystercatcher, 31 Dunlin, 44 Turnstone and 4 Grey Heron. Also 28 Magpie on lagoon 1.


Friday 13/10/06 – One of the Mute Swan adults has returned to the lake behind the hide, with orange darvic ring ‘H97’ – last seen end of July. It has a new mate (I’m guessing), reluctant to go onto the lake, and nervously staying on the lagoon bank near the hide. Water has been pumped into lagoon 3, and will hopefully attract some wildfowl. Flocks of Starling around the site were 500+ strong. Also: 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Stonechat (lagoon 2) and a Peregrine on the pylons. Butterfly seen: 2 Clouded Yellow, 5 Red Admiral, 1 Speckled Wood. Lots of dragonflies still in the late sun.

Migrant Hawker Dragonfly (13/10/06)



Tuesday 10/10/06 – MP reported 2 Tawny Owl calling in the evening, from trees along the bridleway over the road from the hide, and the Great Crested Grebe still on the pond.


Sunday8/10/06 – Similar birds to yesterday. 2 Wheatear by lagoon 1. 5+ Stonechat on lagoon 2. 2 probable Grey Plover flew downriver and gained height over Aust Cliff, heading SSW. The Great Crested Grebe is still on the pond. Various tit-flocks held: 8 Chiffchaff (including 1 singing), 5 Blackcap and 4 Goldcrest. Two flocks of Lapwing; 25 over lagoon 1 and 17 roosting on lagoon 3. Also, 3 Red Admiral butterflies.


Saturday 7/10/06 – A cracking sunny morning and some new birds. Along the shore by lagoon 1 were: a ‘Greenland’ race Wheatear, a Rock Pipit, 2 Sanderling, 15 Redshank, 1 Dunlin, a male Pintail and a Great Spotted Woodpecker in flight. The pond behind the hide had 2 Green Sandpiper (which flew off high to south west) and a first-winter Great Crested Grebe. Lagoon 2 had 4 Stonechat. Lagoon 3 had 24 Lapwing at high tide. Also: 3 Jay (together), c15 House Martin, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, c30 Meadow Pipit, 5 Skylark, 5 Reed Bunting and 1 Clouded Yellow butterfly.

‘Greenland’ Wheatear and Great Crested Grebe (7/10/06)



Sunday 1/10/06 – A Black Tern (a juvenile, I think) flew downiver at 4.50pm, looking very small compared to two accompanying Black-headed Gulls. 2 Redshank are the first returners noted, and 12 Lapwing.

Double rainbow over the Tidal Lagoon. Note that the second rainbow (above the main one) has the red at the bottom – explained at Rainbow - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1/10/06)


Torrential rain this morning filled lagoon 1 with two foot of water.

HL reported: Shoveler (lagoon 1) and Peregrine.


Saturday 30/9/06 – Some migration was visible today, with Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Meadow Pipit, Swallow and House Martin moving down river. A Rock Pipit stopped on the shore briefly, before heading off south. On lagoon 3 there were c30 Meadow Pipit, c30 Linnet and 5 Skylark. A Common Sandpiper and 11 Lapwing were on the shore. Lagoon 1 held: c50 Linnet, 10+ Meadow Pipit and 2 Skylark. c250 House Martin were landing on, and flying around, the towers.

AM also reported: 270 Mallard and 3 Dunlin.


Tuesday 26/9/06 – DS reported the Peregrine attacking crows again.


Sunday 24/9/06 – 2 Mistle Thrush landed to south of lagoon 2, where a Peregrine was attacking crows that were mobbing it. Just 1 Ringed Plover at high tide. Heavy overnight rain flattened the reeds on lagoon 2, and created a few pools on lagoon 3, that 2 Teal and a few Mallard had found. But no interesting passerines were grounded. A Red-legged Partridge was heard and a flock of c70 Goldfinch was on teasel at lagoon 2. Also seen were a Hare and a Hornet.


Saturday 23/9/06 – On the evening tide were: 1 Little Stint, c15 Dunlin, 5 Ringed Plover, c15 Turnstone and 28 Wigeon. Also, 8 Yellow Wagtail flew over, heading south, and a Hobby was over lagoon 2. The Peregrine pair are still roosting on the tower. Plus, 2 Clouded Yellow butterflies.

Little Stint, taken in fading light (23/9/06)


This morning, a Grey Seal was the surprise sighting this far up the estuary. It was first spotted off lagoon 2 at 8.30am, and slowly made its way down river, close in to the shore, past the jetty and was last seen off lagoon 3 at 9am. (Presumably the same one was reported at Severnside in August – up to 21st.)


Two Whinchat were on lagoon 2, and there were 2 Wheatear (in field north of lagoon 1 and in the riding school horse paddock). A flock of waders flew past, containing c18 Ringed Plover and c15 Dunlin. There were 500-1000 House Martin around the cooling towers. A Grey Wagtail was on the pond behind the hide. 7 Skylark were by lagoon 3.

Whinchat, lagoon 2 (23/9/06)                                                                                     House Martins, cooling towers (23/9/06).



Thursday 21/9/06 – At high tide this evening, some waders roosted on the seawall by lagoon 1: 2 Curlew Sandpiper, 1 Sanderling, 39 Ringed Plover and 32 Dunlin. A Green Sandpiper was flushed from the small pond by the footpath to SW of lagoon 3. Also: 4 Wigeon and a Mute Swan on the river at Shepperdine, then flew down-river. [There was a strong Southerly wind today (a remnant of hurricane Gordon), with sunshine and a band of thick high cloud to the west. Sunset was at 7:11pm, and just after this, there was the most spectacular sunset, with the western half of the sky lighting up in an orange-pink glow. This was caused by the setting sun shining on the underneath of the high cloud layer.]

HL reported (in afternoon): 1 Hobby, 18 Common Gull, c300 Black-headed Gull (an increase), 25 Curlew and 1 Oystercatcher.


Sunday 17/9/06 – AM reported: 1 Knot, 1 Oystercatcher, 5 Lapwing, 18 Turnstone, 15 Dunlin, 17 Ringed Plover, 9 Wigeon, 12+ Chiffchaff and 2 Peregrine.


Saturday 16/9/06 – A Green Sandpiper was on the lake behind the hide this morning. c200 House Martin and 3+ Sand Martin were around the towers again, and more flocks of Swallow headed upriver into a light wind. The first returning Wigeon, were 5 at Shepperdine. The number of Linnet has increased to 50+, and a few (7) Meadow Pipit flew over. Also: 1 Whitethroat and a male Great Spotted Woodpecker.


Wednesday 13/9/06 – At low tide, this evening, the following were at Shepperdine: 1 Greenshank, 1 Little Stint, 5 Ringed Plover and 2 Dunlin. 2 Little Owl seen; in the Willow north of Lagoon 1 and sat on a sign-post at lagoon 3. Also 2 Wheatear, c60 Pied Wagtail roosting, c50 House Martin and 3 Canada Goose. The security guards reported a Barn Owl seen ‘quite often’ at night, including yesterday, along the shore between the jetty and lagoon 3.


Saturday 9/9/06 – The highest tide for 20 years (14.4m this evening) forced water out the top of the drain-cover along the bridleway to the shore, but didn’t bring many birds; just 2 Ringed Plover, 3 Lapwing (lagoon 1) and a highish count of 8 Grey Heron. But 4 Raven were vociferous as they flew around, and were mobbed by a Peregrine. It in turn was mobbed by 200+ House Martin as they landed on, and flew around, the towers. A few House Martin and c100 Swallow were heading upriver. An unusual visitor to the site was a Coal Tit, with a mixed tit and warbler flock (inc. 3 Blackcap and singing Chiffchaff), in trees by the small reedbed at lagoon 2. Also: 2 Sedge Warbler (lagoon 2), 1 Whitethroat (juvenile, lagoon 1), a Grey Wagtail (adult, on shore by water works) and 2 Green Woodpecker. There were 4 Canada Goose on the lake. (The ‘Balmoral’ ship went past, upriver.)

MP reported: 3 Peregrine, 1 Wheatear, 26 Turnstone and 130 Mallard.


Wednesday 6/9/06 – This evening there were 2 Wheatear along the shore and a Stonechat on lagoon 2. The roost on Lagoon 3 had c800 Black-headed Gull, c20 Common Gull and 1 Great Black-backed Gull. Also more gulls roosted out on the river, including c100 Herring/Lesser Black-backed Gull. The female Peregrine was on the tower, being watched by c10 House Martin. Also c30 Swallow.


Monday 4/9/06 – HL reported: a Little Grebe on the lake behind the hide, c220 Black-headed Gull, c20 House Martin (lagoon 1) and c20 Pied Wagtail.


Saturday 2/9/06 – A strong south-west wind blowing showers up the estuary at midday kept most birds under cover. But, 4 Sand Martin, 10 House Martin and c10 Swallow down-river. At high-tide were: 28 Dunlin, 19 Ringed Plover, 18 Turnstone, 4 Curlew and 2 Oystercatcher. The number of moulting Mallard continues to build to c300 today. A Peregrine on the cooling tower.

The wind was strong enough to beach this capsized Catamaran before it could be righted (2/9/06).



Friday 1/9/06 – AM reported: A Hobby (over lagoon 2, then over the river, and back over lagoon 3), 246 Mallard, 2 Whinchat (lagoon 2) and 2 Clouded Yellow butterfly.


Monday28/8/06 – 1 Little Egret and 2 Peregrine (on the tower) reported.


Sunday 27/8/06 – A sunny morning and some migrant birds. 2 Sanderling on the shore by lagoon 2. About 20 Chiffchaff (including 1 or 2 still singing) and with them in the hedges: a Reed Warbler, a Sedge Warbler and 5 Whitethroat. A Yellow Wagtail, a Grey Wagtail and c20 Chaffinch (flying low, downriver) over. The Little Owl was perched in the willow just north of lagoon 1. c270 Black-headed Gull, 5 Common Gull and 2 Great Black-backed Gull roosted on lagoon 3 at high tide. Also, 2 Clouded Yellow butterflies.

MP reported: an adult male Redstart in the hedge by the house ruins, just north of lagoon 1 (same one been here for 2 weeks ?), and a Lesser Whitethroat here; plus 2 Whinchat (lagoon 2) and 24 Turnstone. Also a female and 2 probable male Southern Hawker dragonflies. HL reported: 1 Stonechat (lagoon 2), 1 Wheatear and 5 Oystercatcher. AM reported 3 Whinchat on lagoon 2.


Friday 25/8/06 – Very quiet this evening. 2 Yellow Wagtail over, a juvenile Whitethroat (lagoon 2) and several Chiffchaff. 4 Ringed Plover and 13 well-grown juvenile Shelduck on the tidal lagoon shore and c200 Curlew on the mudflats. The Peregrine pair roosted on the cooling tower, next to the nest-platform. A juvenile Green Woodpecker on the grass by the entrance.


[A juvenile Peregrine chased a Pigeon through the entrance doors and into a workshop building (no. 5) at Rolls Royce, Filton, on 21st August ! It then sat and ate a Pigeon on the fire-escape steps outside, unperturbed by the crowd of people watching from only 6 feet away ! See photo in Pictures from other locations.)


Sunday 20/8/06 – HL reported the adult male Redstart again in the cow field between lagoons 1 and 2. Also the 3 Bar-tailed Godwit still.


Saturday 19/8/06 – The cracking adult male Redstart was back along the fence and hedge which runs across lagoon 1. It was on the East side today, with the wind from the West. Also the same 3 Bar-tailed Godwit were at Shepperdine, with 3 Oystercatcher (but no small waders). For me, the best sighting was at 9.10am when 7 ‘Commic’ Tern (probably Artics) flew low down the middle of the river. As they approached the old Severn Bridge, they gained height and were lost against the sky. I’ve seen this behaviour from Severn Beach in Spring, but never witnessed it in Autumn from the Oldbury side. Also 10 Whitethroat, 10 Chiffchaff and c30 Goldfinch. 3 ‘White’ Wagtail reported with Pied Wagtail flock in the cow field by lagoon 1.


Friday 18/8/06 – On a showery evening the shore held: 3 Bar-tailed Godwit (adult in summer plumage and 2 juveniles), 6 Oystercatcher and c300 Curlew (out on the mudflats). A Yellow Wagtail flew over lagoon 1 calling, and 2 Lapwing were there.


Tuesday 15/8/06 – MP reported: the juvenile Redstart again, a Garden Warbler, a Bar-tailed Godwit, a Little Owl, 4 Oystercatcher, c30 Dunlin/Ringed Plover (in-flight at High Tide) and a Clouded Yellow butterfly.

Bar-tailed Godwit, 15/8/06 (photo by MP).


Monday 14/8/06 – MP reported: A juvenile Redstart (probably a 1st winter male) in same place as the adult yesterday, a Stonechat, 2 Whinchat, a Sedge Warbler, 20 Whitethroat, c25 Chiffchaff, 5 Willow Warbler and a Lesser Whitethroat (with the warblers mainly at west end of lagoon 2).


Sunday13/8/06 – A lovely adult male Redstart today, on the fence in the cow field between lagoon 1 and 2 (viewed from lagoon 2). Also, 1 Willow Warbler, 5 Whitethroat and 160 Mallard. (NB. The Yellow-legged Gull on 10th was the 130th species at the site this year.)

MP reported: 1 Bar-tailed Godwit in summer plumage, 19 Ringed Plover, 9 Dunlin, 3 Oystercatcher, 5 Curlew, 8 Turnstone, 68 Herring Gull, 7 Tufted Duck and 2 Lesser Whitethroat.

Male Redstart by lagoon 1, 13/8/06.


Saturday 12/8/06 – The first hint of autumn today with a north wind, and some migrant birds. A juvenile/female Common Redstart was on the fences of lagoon 1, and a Stonechat and 2 Whinchat were on lagoon 2. All were rather elusive. But a Little Owl was prominent on a fence post at lagoon 1. Two Tree Pipit flew quite low over lagoon 3, calling, (and briefly tried landing on overhead power lines !) before heading south west. The Peregrine pair toyed with a passing racing pigeon; seeming to pretend to stoop at it, but pulling away at the last minute. Two or three Sparrowhawk young were noisily calling and flying between trees along the rhyne. Also 2 Clouded Yellow butterflies. A Hobby was at Thornbury Sewage Works, a couple of miles away.


Thursday 10/8/06 – MP reported a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull.


Wednesday 9/8/06 – MP reported a Garganey.


Sunday 6/8/06 – On the shore at high tide were: 9 Sanderling (surprisingly, the highest ever count for the site !), 35 Dunlin, 13 Ringed Plover, 1 Whimbrel, 10 Oystercatcher , 1 Teal and 10 Turnstone (on the ‘ledges’ buoy). With a mixed tit flock, in the trees in the SW corner of lagoon 2 were: 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Willow Warbler, a Blackcap and a probable Garden Warbler. A Lesser Whitethroat was also by lagoon 2, and 8 Whitethroat were seen. A Red-legged Partridge was flushed from the footpath to SW of lagoon 3. A female and juvenile Green Woodpecker were together by lagoon 2. Also: 1 Jay, a shrew and 3 Clouded Yellow butterflies.

Sanderling (with Dunlin) on the shore by lagoon 1, 6/8/06.


Saturday 5/8/06 - On the shore at high tide were: c25 Dunlin, c10 Ringed Plover, 1 Whimbrel, 4 Oystercatcher and 4 Turnstone. A lovely, yellow, juvenile Willow Warbler and a Lesser Whitethroat were by lagoon 2. There were 7 (mainly juvenile) Whitethroat on-site. A Red-legged Partridge was on lagoon 3. The Canada Goose family has left the lake, as has the last Mute Swan, but there were still 7 Tufted Duck (inc. 1+ juvenile). Also a Sand Martin.

AM reported: 1 Common Sandpiper (by the lake), 21 Ringed Plover, 13 Turnstone, 1 Curlew, 2 Lapwing, 159 Mallard, 12 Shelduck (inc. 9 juvenile) and 9 Clouded Yellow butterfly.


Monday 31/7/06 – AM reported: : 1 Common Sandpiper, 10 House Martin, 6 Tufted Duck (inc. 1 juvenile) and 1 Green Woodpecker.


Saturday29/7/06 – c1100 Black-headed Gull on lagoon 3 at high tide. 4 Clouded Yellow, 2 Painted Lady and 1 Ringlet butterfly.

Clouded Yellow and Ringlet butterflies, 29/7/06.



Friday 28/7/06 – A Red-legged Partridge flew across lagoon 3. The evening gull roost on lagoon 3, and on the river, held: 1 Mediterranean Gull (moulting adult), c1300 Black-headed Gull, 40+ Common Gull, c100 Herring/Lesser Black-backed Gull and 2 Great Black-backed Gull. Also: 1 Sand Martin, 8 Turnstone, c10 Curlew , the Canada Goose pair with 3 full-grown young, 1 Mute Swan and a Shelduck with 10 ducklings at Shepperdine. A Little Owl has been reported along the shore by lagoon 2 in the evenings.

Earlier, AM reported: 1 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Wheatear, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Mute Swan (1 on lake and 1 on river), 16+ Turnstone, 1 Collared Dove, 22 Shelduck (inc. broods of 6 + 10), 2 Lapwing, 929 Black-headed Gull, 1 Common Gull, 2 Great Black-backed Gull, 4 Herring Gull, 6 Tufted Duck (inc. 2 juveniles) and 5 Grey Heron. Also 13 Clouded Yellow (!) and 4 Painted Lady butterflies.


Sunday 23/7/06 – MP reported: no sign of the Black Redstart over the weekend, but the Little Grebe again on the lake, 42 Herring Gull, c900 Black-headed Gull, 2 Common Gull, 2 Great Black-backed Gull and 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull.


Saturday 22/7/06 – AM reported: a Little Grebe on the lake, a Herring Gull with yellow ring ‘FB’ on right leg, 7 Turnstone, 1 House Martin and 3 Lapwing. Also 3 Hares in the field next to lagoon 1, a Clouded Yellow and many Painted Lady butterflies.


Thursday 20/7/06 – I found the Black Redstart again this morning ! It was fly-catching along the fence, and on the lawn, which runs by the side of the bridleway from the site entrance to the Severn (best viewed from river bank). (MP had ‘great views’ of it later, and saw that it had some ‘gape’ around the mouth – making it a juvenile.) The Mute Swan pair were alone today, so the last cygnet must have perished. Just one Tufted Duck duckling on the lake with 14 adults. Also a Clouded Yellow butterfly. MP reported a Common Sandpiper.


Wednesday 19/7/06 – MP reported: A juvenile Cuckoo, 2 Yellow Wagtail and 2 Common Sandpiper.


Monday 17/7/06 – A female/juvenile Redstart sp. was on the fence by the jetty this morning for about 5 minutes. I now think that this was a female Black Redstart (despite the date), because it had no light underneath and disappeared into the industrial area of the power station. (I think it was in ‘fresh’ autumn plumage as I noticed buff feather-edges on tertials.) Two adult Mediterranean Gull (one full summer plumage, the other just starting to moult) were with c700 Black-headed Gull on lagoon 3 approaching high tide. The Peregrine pair were together in flight, and 3 Raven flew over, upriver. 11 small ducklings were with two adult Shelduck at Shepperdine. Also, 4 Oystercatcher and 1 Turnstone. (Also a Silver-Y moth.)

Female Peregrine sat on railings at top of cooling tower, 16/7/06.



Sunday 16/7/06 – An adult Great Crested Grebe again on the tidal reservoir at high tide. A Yellow Wagtail low over lagoon 2 towards lagoon 1. The last of the water is in lagoon 1, but 3 Lapwing were there. There appears to be just one Mute Swan cygnet with the adults on the lake, and one adult has an orange darvic ring ‘H97’ on the left leg (first noticed by AM). The 3 Canada Goose goslings are nearly full-grown. Only two broods of Tufted Duck with one duckling each seen today, and 14 adults. 788 Black-headed Gull on lagoon 3. Also: 2 Turnstone, 3 Oystercatcher and 1 Redshank. MP reported a Sedge Warbler on lagoon 2.


[I also saw a Mediterranean Gull over Frampton Cotterell at 4pm this afternoon – with a mixed flock of c100 gulls catching insects on the wing (presumably flying ants). It was an adult in full summer plumage, with lovely, silvery, translucent wings showing in the sunshine. Contrasting with Black-headed Gulls’ grey under-wings. Not a bad garden tick !]

Grey Heron, lagoon 1, 16/7/06.



Saturday 15/7/06 – AM reported: 1 Black-tailed Godwit (lagoon 1), 2 Lapwing, 6 Dunlin, 16 Tufted Duck with broods of 1 & 1, 3 Jay and 136 Mallard.


Friday 14/7/06 – The evening  roost on lagoon 3 held: an adult summer plumaged Mediterranean Gull (earlier seen associating with a Common Gull on the shore by lagoon 1), c1200 Black-headed Gull, and c10 Common Gull. A Green Sandpiper was on lagoon 1. There were c570 Curlew on the mudflats (including 4 on the near-shore !). The Peregrine pair roosted together on the west side of the cooling towers. 4 Oystercatcher on the shore and 2 Turnstone on the green ‘ledges’ buoy (which has been replaced with a new round one, so glad to see them still using it). An adult + 2 juvenile Green Woodpecker by the lawns at the entrance. Other juveniles: Great Tit, Blue Tit, Chiffchaff and 7 Whitethroat. On the lake: just one duckling with 12 adult Tufted Duck, only one Mute Swan cygnet seen and no Canada Goose, but birds may be hiding in overgrown vegetation. Also: 3+ Bullfinch, 7 Sand Martin, 3 House Martin and c50 Swallow.

Mediterranean Gull with Common Gull, 14/7/06.(May have light-green ring on right leg.)



Green Sandpiper, lagoon 1, 14/7/06.


Sunday 9/7/06 – 3 broods of Tufted Duck seen in a brief visit (numbering 3, 2 & 1 duckling). Also 3 Swift. And the Peregrine pair were together on top of the cooling tower.

MP reported a Greenshank on lagoon 1 in the evening.


Saturday 8/7/06 – MP reported: 1 Mediterranean Gull, c700 Black-headed Gull, 14 Tufted Duck with broods of 4, 4 ,3 & 3, 106 Mallard, 2 Teal and a Weasel.


Friday 7/7/06  - MP reported: 2 juvenile Stonechat (lagoon 2), and 4 broods of Tufted Duck on the lake.


Thursday 6/7/06 – MP reported: 1 Green Sandpiper (on lagoon 3), 1 juvenile Stonechat (lagoon 2), 2 Sand Martin, 53 Mallard, 2 Teal, 4 Lapwing, 2 female Tufted Duck with broods of 4+ and 5+ .


Sunday 2/7/06 – A few more returning waders: 3 Ringed Plover, 1 Curlew and 3 Lapwing (lagoon 1). 2 Sand Martin perched on railings at lagoon 2 with c35 Swallow is unusual. Two broods of Tufted Duck (6 + 8) on the lake, with 10 adults. c220 Black-headed Gull  and 1 Common Gull at high tide. AM also reported a Clouded-Yellow butterfly.


Saturday 1/7/06 – The High Tide roost on lagoon 3 held: 1 Mediterranean Gull (adult in summer plumage), 244 Black-headed Gull, 2 Great Black-backed Gull (ad + juv.). 3 Redshank and 2 Teal were early returners. 2 Lapwing on lagoon 1 (still with water). 7 very small Tufted Duck ducklings were with 8 adults on the lake. The Mute Swan family has 4 cygnets left and the Canada Goose family has 3 gosling. Also: 3 Lesser Whitethroat (singing), 1 Jay, 1 Green Woodpecker and 1 Peregrine. Loads of butterflies: Comma, Painted Lady, Marbled White, Small Skipper, Wall Brown.

Tufted Duck female with 7 ducklings,1/7/06.


Sunday 25/6/06  - MP reported: 5 Emperor dragonfly, 1 Black-tailed skimmer, Azure and Blue-tailed Damselflies, c.100 Marbled White butterfly, Small Heath and Small Skipper.


Saturday 24/6/06 – MP reported: 189 Black-headed Gull (including 4 juveniles), 17 Herring Gull, 2 Lesser Black-backed Gull.


Monday 19/6/06 – The High  Tide gull roost on lagoon 3 held: 41 Black-headed Gull (including a juvenile), c30 Herring Gull, c10 Lesser Black-backed Gull and a Great Black-backed Gull. The female Peregrine was sat on the nesting ledge with the male next to it, before flying off. Young of Magpie and Great Tit seen. Bee and Pyramidal Orchid in flower. Lagoon 1 still has water in it (usually dry by end of May).


Saturday 17/6/06 – AM reported a Turnstone on the green ‘ledges’ buoy, and 3 Oystercatcher.


Saturday 10/6/06 – A Hobby flew over lagoon 3 then circled up very high over lagoon 1. A Greylag Goose was on the lake behind the hide, with the Mute Swan family (5 cygnets), Canada Goose family (3 goslings) and 10 male Tufted Duck (hopefully the females are sitting). The pair of Shelduck with 9 duckling were on the shore by lagoon 3. A Sedge Warbler was singing on lagoon 2. Also: 17 Whitethroat, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Raven and 3 Oystercatcher.

Greylag Goose,10/6/06.


Sunday 4/6/06 – Good number of waders (for the time of year) on the high tide: 22 Ringed Plover, 5 Dunlin, 8 Oystercatcher and a Little Egret. The post-breeding Starling flock has increased to 600+ ! There are 5 Mute Swan cygnets with the adults on the lake, and also the Canada Goose family (3 gosling), and 10+ Tufted Duck. Another pair of Mute Swan and 4 adult Canada Goose were on lagoon 1. 

AM reported: 8 Greylag Goose flying inland, 20 Shelduck, 15 Tufted Duck (9 male), and (on 1st June) 2 Shoveler plus a Hornet in the hide !


Ringed Plover and Dunlin, 4/6/06.

Common Blue butterflies mating and ‘The Waverley’ paddle-steamer heading down-river, 4/6/06.



Saturday 3/6/06 – A glorious sunny day and some interesting birds. A pair of Great Crested Grebe was unusual on the main river channel; drifted over the tidal lagoon on the rising tide. At Shepperdine were 6 Ringed Plover and 2 late drake Teal. Also there were a large (300+) post-breeding flock of Starling. On the lake were the Mute Swan (3+ cygnets) and Canada Goose families, and 13 Tufted Duck. A second pair of Mute Swan were on the shore. Also: 3 Lesser Whitethroat (singing), 2 Oystercatcher, 2 Jay and a Green Woodpecker. Butterflies: Painted Lady, Small Copper, Brimstone, Small Heath and lots of Common Blue.


Sunday 28/5/06 – A Dunlin, 2 Oystercatcher and a Black-headed Gull on the evening tide. At least one pair of Lapwing are nesting in a field to SW of Lagoon 3. A Brown Hare was on Lagoon 1.


Peregrine, 28/5/06.



Saturday 27/5/06 – On the lake behind the hide were still 20 Tufted Duck, the Canada Goose family (with at least 3 gosling), the Mute Swan pair (cygnets out of sight in cold/wet weather) and two Coot families (2 + 1 chicks). At Shepperdine were a pair of Shelduck with 9 young. The 2 Peregrine were on the tower ledges. 10 House Martin, 2 Swift and 15 Swallow feeding low. A Reed Warbler sang from a small patch of reeds on the shore, by lagoon 3.


Pictures of interesting, possible RosybillxMallard (?) duck,  at Coate Water (Swindon) . . . Rosybillx


Saturday 20/5/06 – A cold and wet wind from SW today. 1 Sedge Warbler (singing), 1 Lapwing and 1 Oystercatcher. Still 7 cygnets with the Mute Swan pair, and at least 1 gosling with the Canada Goose pair (with rest being brooded). 


Sunday 14/5/06 – (am) The tide brought 3 Whimbrel, 3 Ringed Plover, 18 Dunlin, 2 Oystercatcher and 9 Black-headed Gull. 2 Greylag Goose flew SW towards the yacht club. 22 Whitethroat, 2 Lesser Whitethroat and 3 Sedge Warbler were singing. As was possibly 2 Cetti’s Warbler – heard, one after the other, 100 yards apart. A Yellow Wagtail called overhead. Unusual, were 4 Jay together. Also: 1 Red-legged Partridge, 2 Raven, 2 Peregrine.

(pm) On the evening tide were: 4 Whimbrel, 1 Curlew, 5 Ringed Plover, 11 Oystercatcher and a probable Garganey flying fast upriver.



Friday 12/5/06 – My first Cuckoo of the year at OPS started calling at 8.45pm ! The Mute Swan family (7 cygnets) and Canada Goose family (5 gosling) are still on the lake behind the hide, with a good count of 21 Tufted Duck and 2 Common Sandpiper. A Whimbrel and a mixed flock of 62 Lesser Black-backed Gull/Herring Gull were on lagoon 3.


Tuesday 9/5/06 – A Whinchat reported on lagoon 2.


Sunday 7/5/06 – A Knot in full summer plumage was a little beauty at Shepperdine, and was followed by a Spotted Flycatcher along the bridleway/rhine. The Mute Swan eggs have finally hatched and 7 cygnets joined the goslings (down to 5) on the lake. The afternoon tide brought 4 Dunlin (summer plumaged), 1 Turnstone (on yellow buoy) and 2 Whimbrel. Also: 1 Wheatear and the same singers as yesterday. The Peregrine pair were on top of the tower. A Painted Lady butterfly on lagoon 2.


Saturday 6/5/06 – A quiet sunny morning, but 6 Bar-tailed Godwit flew upriver (2 in summer plumage). A Garden Warbler, 7 Lesser Whitethroat and 3 Sedge Warbler were singing. Also: 7 adult Canada Goose (on lagoon 3), 3 Bullfinch and a Raven. The first Hawthorn flowers seen.

The afternoon High Tide had: 2 Grey Plover, 5 Dunlin, 4 Oystercatcher and 27 Black-headed Gull. Also a Wheatear (lagoon 3).

The Canada Goose pair have 6 goslings, but the Mute Swan still sits,6/5/06.


Monday 1/5/06 – PaH reported a probable female Merlin across field by Jobsgreen farm (12pm).

A strong (cold) W/NW wind brought 2 adult Kittiwake at 9.30am, on the rising tide; they passed by and continued flying upriver. (Also 15 Black-headed Gull passed.) Waders on lagoon 3: 3 Whimbrel, 2 Curlew and a Dunlin. Also 4 Oystercatcher seen. A few migrants in the poor weather: 3 Sedge Warbler, 4 Wheatear, 1 Stonechat, (all lagoon 2), 2 Garden Warbler, c10 House Martin and 2 Swift. (A surprisingly productive morning, with 63 species – my site record for a visit.)


Saturday 29/4/06 – On the evening tide were 9 Bar-tailed Godwit, flying upriver (2 in summer plumage), and a Little Egret. (Giving 66 species for the day – my site record.)

More migrants today, with first Yellow Wagtail, Sedge Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat and Swift. Also a large number of Whitethroat (50+) and Blackcap (c30) on site. The Cetti’s Warbler and a Red-legged Partridge were heard to south of the lake behind hide. The Peregrine pair were seen together on top of the tower. The Mute Swan eggs should be hatching soon. Also: 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Stonechat, 2 Jay.

AM reported: Cuckoo and Tree Pipit.

Green Hairstreak butterfly in hedge between Lagoons 1 and 2 (MP), 29/4/06.


Peregrine on tower, 29/4/06.


Sunday 23/4/06 – A fantastic weekend was rounded off by a Spoonbill (my 100th species at the site this year) and male Garganey on lagoon 1. The Spoonbill was feeding well, but then flew down-river at 16:25. MP reported it being flushed from the pill at Oldbury Yacht Club and then landing below Aust cliff. There were 2 Whinchat, 2 Wheatear and a Stonechat on lagoon 2. Also, 4 Gadwall (lagoon 1), 1 Turnstone, and a Snipe (flushed from lagoon 2).

Spoonbill and male Garganey, lagoon 1, 23/4/06.



Saturday 22/4/06 – An afternoon visit produced a rarity for the area; a Turtle Dove. It was being chased around the trees to the SW of the lake behind the hide, by 2 Collared Dove. Also 3 Whimbrel. MP reported a Hobby.

AM reported a Marsh Harrier at 10:50, heading SW towards Oldbury. The Marsh Harrier then came back to the Power Station and went NE along the river.

Earlier, there were plenty of migrants heading NE in still, overcast, conditions: c100 Swallow per hour, c50 Sand Martin per hour, 7 House Martin, c10 Linnet, c10 Meadow Pipit, 4 Goldfinch and 2 Song Thrush (East). The Cetti’s Warbler was singing by the road and the 2 Red-legged Partridge were on the bridleway by the rhine. 4 Reed Warbler sang (including one from a bramble bush, away from the reeds). The pair of Canada Goose on the lake had some competition from 4 others, with one standing on top of the hide ! A pair of Greylag Goose were on the tidal reservoir. The Peregrine pair were vocal on the pylons, but sadly don’t look like they will nest this year. Also: 1 Raven, 3 Oystercatcher, c15 Whitethroat, 1 Stonechat, 11 Tufted Duck and 1 Common Sandpiper.


Friday 21/4/06 – MP reported (evening): 4 Arctic Tern lingering on the tidal reservoir until dusk, 4 Wheatear, 1 Whinchat, 1 Stonechat, 1 Reed Warbler, 1 Swift and a constant flow of Swallow and Sand Martin North.


Monday 17/4/06 – A Whitethroat invasion this morning, with 6 around the site. Few waders, but: 2 Whimbrel on the shore, 1 Dunlin (s.p.), 1 Ringed Plover, 1 Oystercatcher and 3 Redshank. A Cetti’s Warbler was heard calling twice from the overgrown ditch between the lake and the road. The Peregrine pair were on the top of the tower. Along the track to the hide, I found the bird in the photos below, feeding on the flowers of a Pussy Willow. I thought at first that it must be a Siskin, but then saw that it appeared to have a completely yellow head, and began thinking Serin ! I’m still not sure what this bird is from the photos. It has some good features of Serin: general proportions and shape, yellow head and front, pinkish legs, very forked tail, drooping wings, some silverish feathering on wing coverts (just visible on first/second photos), distinct stripes on sides of breast, bill shape/size, brown feathering on top of head, nape and cheek. However, it also has some features that aren’t so good: no moustachial darker colouring, insufficient brownish feathering on cheek, brownish rather than greenish back, white wingbars lacking yellow, orange spot on forehead (although this could be accounted for by pollen).

(More high definition photos of this bird - Possible Serin.)

Possible Serin,17/4/06.



MP reported 2 White Wagtail with c15 Pied Wagtail and a Little Egret on lagoon 1.


Sunday 16/4/06 – A Whimbrel and 2 Curlew roosting on lagoon 3, a Little Egret on lagoon 1, 2 Sand Martin and 17 Swallow flying through. Also a fox on lagoon 2.


Friday 14/4/06 – The first Common Sandpiper of the year, and 50+ Turnstone on the green ‘ledges’ buoy at high tide. Lots of singing Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler, plus 4 Swallow. 4 pairs of Tufted Duck, and nesting Mute Swan and Canada Goose on the lake behind the hide. 10 Great Black-backed Gull and 3 Curlew on lagoon 3.


Wednesday 12/4/06 – MP reported: Red-legged Partridge (lagoon 1) and Wheatear (lagoon 2).

Red-legged Partridge (photo by MP), lagoon 1, 12/4/06.


Saturday8/4/06 – An early morning visit was rewarded with 2 Red-legged Partridge running along the track around lagoon 3 (last seen at OPS in 1998). Lots of singing migrants: 4 Blackcap, 9 Chiffchaff and 2 Willow Warbler. Also one Swallow, through. The Peregrine pair were on a freshly killed Woodpigeon, on the river bank by lagoon 1.


Friday 7/4/06 – MP reported that there was little to see in a very cold wind, except the Peregrine pair copulated on the nest-platform this morning and the male took food to the platform for the female in the evening. Also 2 Sand Martin heading north.

Mute Swan on nest (by MP), lake behind hide, 7/4/06.


Wednesday 5/4/06 – MP/AM reported a Cetti’s Warbler on the lake behind the hide.


(NB. The Great Skua on Sunday was the first at the site since Oct 1988, from AM’s records.)


Monday 3/4/06 – HL reported the Barn Owl on lagoon 2 at 7.10pm, for 15 minutes.


Sunday 2/4/06 – Another very quiet morning; that is, until just as I was about to leave the hide overlooking lagoon 3, at 10.25am. The 3 Great Black-backed Gull there, flew up calling, and continued to circle and call. 30 seconds later a Great Skua flew through ! It drifted along the far side of the lagoon, heading upriver on the strong south-westerly wind, not beating a wing; the white wing-flashes obvious. (Almost certainly this was the same bird that was seen to kill a gull at Slimbridge, at 11am – according to The Gloster Birder site – see Links.) The only other birds of note were: 2 Sand Martin, 1 Swallow, 1 Gadwall (male on lagoon 1), 8 Chiffchaff, 11 Turnstone, 1 Redwing, and the pair of Peregrine active around the tower.


HL reported the Barn Owl again, hunting the reedbeds on lagoon 2 between 7.40 and 8.05pm, last night.


Saturday 1/4/06 – A very high tide and south-west wind produced nothing of interest, but 2 Sand Martin and 4 Swallow hawked around lagoon 1 before heading north. The female Peregrine plucked a kill on the tower, with the male close-by. 10+ Chiffchaff were on-site. The first Cowslip was flowering.


Thursday 30/3/06 – HL reported the Peregrine pair on the tower. Also 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Reed Bunting, 1 Jay, 1 Green Woodpecker, 3 pairs of Tufted Duck and the Mute Swan pair keeping the 3 Canada Goose away from the island in the lake.


Sunday 26/3/06 – Singles of Grey Plover and Ringed Plover on the evening tide. Also a Swallow heading NE flew through my scope-view as I scanned the evening roost of c1000 Common Gull on the tidal reservoir. The highlight was a fantastic display put on by a pair of Peregrine as they cavorted in the updraft around the cooling towers. The Pintail on lagoon 1 have increased to 6 (3 pairs) and there were 20 Shoveler here (both good counts). 3 Gadwall (2 males) were on the lake.

MP also reported: 1 Little Egret (lagoon 1, then in field directly to N of lagoon), 61 Teal, 30 Wigeon and 1 Chiffchaff singing.


PS. The Barn Owl seen recently is the first at the Power Station since 2000 (according to AM’s records).


Little Egret (photo by MP), lagoon1, 26/3/06.


Saturday 25/3/06 – It felt like Spring today, with Blackthorn in flower plus 2 Chiffchaff (late first record) and 2 Willow Warbler (early first record) all singing in hedges around lagoon 1. Best bird was a Great Crested Grebe, in the main river channel, off Shepperdine. The 5 Pintail were on lagoon 1 again, as were 18 Shoveler. 2 Raven flew along the river. Waders at Low Tide were: 6 Oystercatcher, 10 Dunlin, 7 Redshank and 10 Curlew. A Meadow Pipit performed its ‘parachute’ display. Also a Weasel seen again on the Severn Way. The female Mute Swan is nest-sitting on the lake, while the male is being aggressive to the 3 Canada Goose. 7 Tufted Duck also on the lake. Interesting behaviour by 2 Long-tailed Tit, which were sipping nectar/pollen from newly opened Pussy Willow flowers.


Thursday 23/3/06 – HL reported: 7 Redpoll (between lagoons 1 & 2), 1 Little Egret and a Barn Owl 1.5m inland of the Power Station, at Pickedmoor Lane, east of Oldbury-on-Severn (MP reported that it has been hunting here during the day recently). BK reported: c350 Wigeon, 4 Pintail, 16 Shoveler and 2 Little Owl.


Wednesday 22/3/06 – AM reported the Barn Owl on lagoon 2 in the evening.


Monday20/3/06 – MP reported a Jack Snipe at Shepperdine, and 4 Redpoll on lagoon 3.


Sunday 19/3/06 – An  evening visit produced the Barn Owl (as reported on 14th) – seen for a short time, as it flew along the embankment on the east side of lagoon 3, at 6.45pm. Also heard, was a Little Owl (lagoon 1) and a flock of Goose sp., flying up-river (presumably Canada Goose). Also, 1000’s of (mainly) Black-headed Gull, with Common Gulls, on the tidal reservoir. AM reported 3 Peregrine (including a female on the nesting-platform on the cooling tower), 213 Wigeon, 87 Teal, 43 Redshank and 25 Dunlin.


Saturday 18/3/06 – In a cold Easterly wind, there were 5 Pintail on lagoon 1 (including 2 males – interestingly, the same number, and mix, as on 16th March last year), and also 18 Shoveler there. 5 Stonechat along the river; there has been a local influx. The lake behind the hide still had the Mute Swan pair and 3 Canada Goose, and now 10 Tufted Duck. A singing male was among 4 Bullfinch. The Linnet/Chaffinch flock seems to have left lagoon 3.


Male Pintail, lagoon1, 18/3/06.


3 Pintail and 3 Shoveler, lagoon1, 18/3/06.


Friday 17/3/06 – MP reported: a summer plumaged Mediterranean Gull at the evening roost on the Tidal Reservoir, with c2500 Black-headed Gull and c2000 Common Gull. Also 2 Pintail and c250+ Pied Wagtail.


Thursday 16/3/06 – MP reported 5 Pintail and 18 Shoveler.


Tuesday 14/3/06 – A Barn Owl reported (on BOC website – see Links) hunting at 6.45am over lagoon 2. MP reported a Grey Wagtail at the Water Treatment Works.


Monday 13/3/06 – HL reported an Avocet on mudflats, just north of the power station, at Shepperdine. PB also reported a Little Egret and 4 Stonechat.


Photos by PB, 13/3/06.



Saturday 11/3/06 – 3+ Redpoll among weeds in north east corner of lagoon 2, but elusive, and 3 Stonechat there. Very quiet on the river, with just 1 Oystercatcher and c35 Curlew the only waders. Some action on the lake behind the hide, with the pair of Mute Swan building a nest, and getting aggressive with 3 Canada Goose. Also 8 Tufted Duck there. Another 2 Canada Goose on lagoon 3, where water is being pumped in (with potential for attracting migrants, even if it is rarely fulfilled !).

AM reported: another 2 Oystercatcher, 37 Shelduck, c75 Linnet, c50 Chaffinch, and a few Reed Bunting (lagoon 3 still).


Saturday 4/3/06 – No sign of the White-fronted Geese, but a surprise Egyptian Goose with 3 Canada Goose on the shore just west of Oldbury Yacht Club. It then flew up the pill by the yacht club. (Later reported by AM flying up-river and landing on the north shore.) Along the shore just west of lagoon 3 were: 8 Yellowhammer, 4 Reed Bunting, 6 Skylark, c80 Linnet, c30 Chaffinch and two Stock Dove. A Great Spotted Woodpecker was drumming in the small copse here, and another was seen drumming by lagoon 2. Lagoon 3 had a Stonechat, 3 Great Black-backed Gull, 112 Black-headed Gull and 2 Raven. Another Stonechat and a fox were on lagoon 2. I also had a very close view of a Weasel along the shore. A frozen lagoon 1 just had 15 Redshank and 2 Turnstone.


Saturday 25/2/06 – MP reported: 5 White-fronted Goose, 1000+ Dunlin, c200 Wigeon, 7 Yellowhammer, 1 Oystercatcher, 6 Canada Goose on pond, and a pair of Stonechat on lagoon.2.

AM also reported: 8 Siskin (on alders by lagoon 2), 459 Wigeon, 80 Teal, 12 Shoveler, 36 Curlew, 3 Tufted Duck and 4 Mute Swan.


Wednesday 22/2/06 – HL reported the 5 White-fronted Goose feeding in an adjacent field to where they were, and also in the field: 19 Curlew, 85 Lapwing, 2 Grey Heron, 11 Shelduck and 6 Yellowhammer (in the hedge). Also, 32 Teal on the river and on the lake behind hide were 2 Mute Swan, 2 Canada Goose and 3 Tufted Duck (2m, 1f ). (Cold NE wind.)


Tuesday 21/2/06 – MP reported 3 White-fronted Goose still on the shore by lagoon 3.


Monday 20/2/06 - HL reported 5 White-fronted Goose in a coastal field just SW of lagoon 3, towards the yacht club. Also: 40 Redshank, 52 Dunlin, 3 Canada Goose, 2 Mute Swan and a Jay.


Photo by PB, 20/2/06.


Sunday 19/2/06 – HL reported: 5 White-fronted Goose, 2 male Pintail, 13 Shoveler, 300 Dunlin and 30 Turnstone. On lagoon 3: 24 Snipe, 1 Stonechat, 10 Stock Dove, 3 Canada Goose and 2 Mute Swan.


Saturday 18/2/06 - Dense fog over the Severn this morning. The only highlights were: 28 Snipe on the shore by lagoon 3, a stoat going under the hide (as per report of 7/1/06), and a Skylark singing (but why it chose today to start is a mystery !).

HL reported 4 White-fronted Goose on the seaweed bed off lagoon 3 in the afternoon.


Friday 17/2/06 – AM reported: 5 Snipe, 500 Lapwing, 17 Dunlin, 500 Black-headed Gull, 53 Common Gull, 2 Mute Swan, 66 Mallard, 78 Teal, 13 Shoveler, 17 Redshank and c60 Turnstone.


Thursday 16/2/06 – MP reported, on lagoon 3 at HT: 34 Snipe, 1200 Lapwing, 12 Dunlin, 2 Great Black-backed Gull, 15 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 250 Black-headed Gull, 50 Common Gull; and 4 Tufted Duck on the lake.


Lapwing on Lagoon 3 by MP,16/2/06.




Wednesday 15/2/06 – MP reported: 2 male Gadwall (first reported on site since Nov., 2004) and 3 Tufted Duck on the lake. c1700 Lapwing, 1 Knot and c400 Dunlin on lagoon 3. 28 Shoveler, 4 Pintail and 37 Redshank on lagoon 1. A Water Rail calling from reeds on lagoon 2. Also a Stonechat reported.


Sunday 12/2/06 – AM reported: 1400 Lapwing, 900 Dunlin, 1 Peregrine and 28 Shoveler.


Saturday 11/2/06 – A cold-weather movement of thrushes this week, resulting in 2 Mistle Thrush, 12 Song Thrush, c15 Fieldfare and c15 Redwing. Also, higher number of ducks at Shepperdine (flushed from lagoons by security guards): 21 Shelduck, 24 Shoveler (a high count) and a pair of Pintail. Plus, on the shore: 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Oystercatcher, c400 Dunlin, c200 Lapwing, 5 Snipe and 2 (probable) Rock Pipit on the break-water. On lagoon 3 were c110 Linnet, c30 Chaffinch and 15 Skylark. The Mute Swan pair were pushed onto the river as the lake was frozen. Also: 2 Raven (heard), 4 Stonechat (lagoon 2 + 3) and 2 Lesser Redpoll (on weeds in NE corner, lagoon 2, but elusive).


Sunday 5/2/06 – AM reported: 86 Wigeon, 144 Mallard, 4 Pintail, 183 Teal, 8 Shoveler, 4 Oystercatcher, 26 Redshank, 12 Snipe, 7 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Curlew, c80 Turnstone, 1600 Dunlin, 1 Rock Pipit, 35 Skylark, 120 Linnet/Chaffinch, 20 Song Thrush, 4 Stonechat, 1 Peregrine, 2 Jay. Also reported: 1 Grebe sp. on lake and a Wren in the hide, again.


Latest Site Species List updated with list of all species seen at Oldbury Power Station in 2005.


Saturday 4/2/06 – At high tide on Lagoon 1 were: 4 Pintail (2 pairs), 8 Shoveler, 10 Black-tailed Godwit, c100 Dunlin and c30 Lapwing (the only ones seen). 2 Stonechat on Lagoon 3, with 2 Raven over and still c50 Chaffinch, c50 Linnet and 22 Skylark. 7 Song Thrush included one singing and another anviling a snail. The hint of Spring was enhanced with a Great Spotted Woodpecker drumming. The Turnstone flock were roosting on the green ‘ledges’ buoy. 12 Bullfinch included a fantastic flock of 8. Also: Peregrine, 2 Jay, 3 Snipe, 4 Great Black-backed Gull and Pheasant.


Saturday 28/1/06 – A bitter wind from the north east kept things quiet. A Great Spotted Woodpecker and a Green Woodpecker by the entrance. A Mistle Thrush over and 3 Song Thrush together in a field (migrants ?). 2 Canada Goose joined the Mute Swan pair on the lake. c50 Chaffinch, c50 Linnet and 10 Stock Dove still on lagoon 3.

AM Reported: 3 Redpoll (lagoon 2), c520 Wigeon, 89 Dunlin, 16 Redshank, 16 Curlew, 14 Shoveler, 6 Shelduck, 1 Stonechat and 2 Peregrine (males, in vocal territorial dispute).


Sunday 22/1/06 – Fog lingered all day. A Lesser Redpoll bathed in a puddle on Lagoon 2. 7 Yellowhammer were with the c70 Linnet, c60 Chaffinch, 15 Skylark and 10 Stock Dove on Lagoon 3. Also there, were 12 Snipe (+3 over), c600 Lapwing and c300 Dunlin. 6 Black-tailed Godwit were on Lagoon 1. A Little Owl called in the gloom. The Peregrine was on the pylon. 35 Common Gull bathed on the Tidal Lagoon.


Tuesday 17/1/06 – Another good morning, with a Spotted Redshank at Shepperdine, and also there: 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 7 Black-tailed Godwit, 9 Redshank and c70 Turnstone. Lagoon 1 had 17 Shoveler before the Power Station security staff flushed everything at 11:30am. A Little Egret was on the rhine. Lagoon 3 had c1800 Lapwing and c600 Dunlin at High Tide, and 37 Skylark were with c70 Linnet and c70 Chaffinch. There were 3 Stonechat on Lagoon 2 with 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker to south of here. Also: a good count of 12 Bullfinch and 1 Jay. A pair of Mute Swan have now taken up residence on the lake behind the hide, usurping the juvenile that has been there.


Sunday 15/1/06 – A lot of disturbance on the Lagoons at High Tide this morning (from Power Station security staff), but flocks of c2000 Lapwing and c1200 Dunlin in the air made a great spectacle. Single Golden Plover and Snipe, plus 8 Black-tailed Godwit added variety. MP reported a Bar-tailed Godwit and a pair of Pintail on Lagoon 1, earlier. No sign of the Yellowhammers, and only c40 Chaffinch, c50 Linnet and c5 Skylark on Lagoon 3. A Stonechat and 2 Water Rail (heard) on Lagoon 2. A pair of adult Mute Swan on the lake. Also 6 Bullfinch, a Peregrine and a Jay.


AM also reported (during WEBs count): 30 Skylark, c100 Linnet, c120 Chaffinch, 272 Wigeon, 39 Mallard, 508 Teal, 18 Shoveler, 8 Shelduck, 12 Curlew, 9 Redshank, 1 Oystercatcher, 2 Raven.


Saturday 14/1/06 – Dursley Birdwatching group (inc. HL) reported 51 species, including: Redpoll, Mistle Thrush, Little Owl, Chiffchaff, Collared Dove, Stonechat, Black-tailed Godwit, Bullfinch, Green Woodpecker, juv. Mute Swan, c1400 Lapwing, 1000+ Dunlin.


Saturday 7/1/06 – Loads of birds around, despite mist. There were an amazing 25 Yellowhammer with c100 Chaffinch, c70 Linnet and 28 Skylark between Lagoon 3 and the river. The high-tide roost on Lagoon 3 had c1460 Lapwing and c500 Dunlin. Also 3 Stonechat on Lagoon 3. On Lagoon 1 was a Bar-tailed Godwit (id confirmed in flight), with 11 Black-tailed Godwit. Along the coast were 1 Grey Plover, c80 Turnstone, 25 Redshank, 4 Oystercatcher and a Snipe. A group of walkers reported c50 Snipe in long grass by river between Oldbury and the Power Station. BSK reported a stoat which ran under the hide.


Sunday 1/1/06 – An evening visit at Low Tide produced c300 Common Gull and c250 Black-headed Gull roosting on the marine reservoir, with mixed flocks still arriving after dusk and thousands of gulls on the mudflats. 15 Black-tailed Godwit are still on Lagoon 1, with a Raven and a fox there. Also, a Stonechat on Lagoon 3 and a Peregrine on a pylon.

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