Tuesday, 30 December 2008


Calvert BBOWT; A packed ,and importantly quiet 1st hide were rewardedwith good views of all 3 shy reed dwelling species tonight. Firstly a CETTI'S WARBLER flew accross gap below hide. It then appeared in full view on face of tall reeds close to hide. Stayed there for c6 seconds, weaved through reeds into lone bush. Heard singing later.

The EURASIAN BITTERN climbed reeds in same spot as last night at 1610. in left hand reedbed.This is reedbed directly below hide not one on opposite bank. A WATER RAIL emerged from reeds and preened for long time.

Also a COMMON SHELDUCK briefly, flew off West (Tim Watts)

Monday, 29 December 2008


Calvert BBOWT; After umpteenth attempt, bingo!! EURASIAN BITTERN climbed reeds in left hand reedbed on edge of deep water, c 10 mts toleft of lone bush in reeds at 4:10. On earlier morning visit had seen reeds twitching quite heavily in this reedbed but nothing spotted (Tim Watts).

Monday, 22 December 2008

22 DECEMBER 2008

Whitchurch; BARN OWL hunting at end of garden 08:10.

Calvert BBOWT: 31 COMMON SNIPES in cut reeds in front of the first hide, the largest number recorded for many a year/ CETTI'S WARBLER, loud bursts of song.

Grendon Underwood layby: c 250 linnets/ COMMON RAVEN over; RED KITE with orange wing tags/c300 Lapwing

Berryfields A41 layby; Pleased to report 2 SHORT-EARED OWLS still present.Hunting at 3:25pm. Dog walker in right hand field.

Happy Christmas

Tim Watts

Saturday, 20 December 2008


This very striking albinistic 'Herring Gull' roosted this evening on the Sailing Lake along with two first-winter and the regular 2nd-winter CASPIAN GULLS (Warren Claydon & Tim Watts)

Monday, 15 December 2008

15 DECEMBER 2008

Immature MERLIN, Marsh Gibbon, Bucks, December 2008 (Tim Watts)
Granborough hay store; Only c20 birds present but 8 of these TREE SPARROWS.
Calvert; CETTI'S WARBLER gave 2 loud bursts of song and was glimpsed once.
Hillesden; flock of c400 mixed Linnet/Greenfinch/few Chaffinch on sunflower strip/ pr of GOOSANDER.
A recently dug small roadside pond between Calvert and Hillesden with domestic Ducks/Chickens today had c15 Mute Swans.
Marsh Gibbon layby; PEREGRINE seen twice/MERLIN in spectacular long chase after singled out finch, think it got it/ c150 Golden plover.
A41 Berryfields layby; 3 SHORT-EARED OWLS/ 1 Barn owl. 2 S.E.O on posts from 2:30-3:50.
Tim Watts

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

10 DECEMBER 2008

Calvert BBOWT; Gulls that used pre-roost at some point were a 1stW CASPIAN GULL and 10 YELLOW-LEGGED GULLS. Most interesting were 172 Great Black-backed Gulls on lake after all the other gulls had flown to main roost (Tim Watts)

Monday, 8 December 2008



Another heavy frost being slow to clear and penetrating all day in some areas. Clear, dry and cold.

A41 Berryfields
(with Tim Watts, Tony Donnelly and others) A total of 5 SHORT-EARED OWLS hunted the fields between 1445 and 1515 hours, with a Common Kestrel successfully catching a Field Vole, a single hunting BARN OWL, 5+ COMMON STONECHATS, a Common Buzzard and a single CHINESE WATER DEER.

Calvert Sailing Lake
Warren Claydon identified two different CASPIAN GULLS amongst the huge roost - one of the regular adults (the bird with the dark staining on the head) and a 2nd-winter. There were also at least 17 YELLOW-LEGGED GULLS roosting.

Saturday, 6 December 2008


Fieldfare (Tim Watts) - one of 300 at Berryfields today

Calvert; 2 Common Snipe/ yesterday Gareth Leese had 4 PINTAIL on BBOWT lake

Hillesden; 11 Mipits/ c200 mixed finches/1 Siskin/

Berryfields, Northern section farmland; c300 Fieldfare/6 Yellowhammer

Berryfields A41 layby; With Pete Garner saw a definite 5 SHORT-EARED OWLS and quite possibly 6. Good views in sunlight as main action tonight was 2:30-3p.m. Owls dispersed and long periods up until dark when only 1 or none seen, shame as quite a lot of birders arrived at what is normally best time.It was heavy rain here last night so guess why up early tonight; 2 seen to fly S/E out of rough grass area. There is more rough ground in that direction at back of Weedon housing developement but hard to access (Tim Watts)

Thursday, 4 December 2008


Whitchurch; c150 European Golden plover next to A413

Granborough hay store; 2 TREE SPARROWS with Chaffinch flock.

Calvert BBOWT; Very large gull pre-roost, thought this might be whole roost but c1,500 large gulls flew from tip straight to sailing lake. Amongst BBOWT flock were 11 adult and a 3rd-winter YELLOW-LEGGED GULL.

Good example of how widely English/ Bucks Gulls range with ringing details from an adult Lesser Black-backed Gull photographed with a colour ring at Calvert recently. It transpired that it was ringed as a juvenile at South Walney Island, Cumbria, in July 1999, then next spotted atPorto de Lgos - Portugal in 2002, Sines - Portugal in 2005 and Calvert - England in 2008


Monday, 1 December 2008

TREE SPARROWS still surviving

Granborough hay store: 2 TREE SPARROWS with c100 Chaffinch/Yellowhanmmer.Didn't see any here last Winter so looks promising.

Calvert BBOWT; highlight, 2 LESSER REDPOLL! (uncommon here)

Hillesden Pools; 2 adult WHOOPER SWANS flew low over pools, then higher and flew a long way, towards Padbury area. If same returning pair, their valley bottom fields do not look suitable this year as just fresh plough. Also 22 EUROPEAN GOLDEN PLOVERS/c 350 mixed Linnet, Greenfinch and Chaffinch on set-aside strip.

Foxcote Reservoir; 10 COMMON GOLDENEYES

Grendon Underwood; c120 Linnet

Botolph Claydon; c 500 Starling

Berryfields A41 layby; 2 SHORT-EARED OWLS, 1 BARN OWL and 4 COMMON STONECHATS- Owls up at 3 pm but disturbed by 2 workers in flourescent jackets on tractor on ridge.