Once more, the two extremely rare thrushes dominated the rare bird headlines during the month, without actually doing much! The Blue Rock Thrush remained at Stow-on-thewold, Gloucestershire and the Dusky Thrush at Beeley, Derbyshire, both throughout the month, into February.
HIGHLIGHTS: The Great Northern Diver remained at Carsington Water. Two Great White Egrets were at Aston-on-trent GP (2nd) with one at Long Eaton GP (27th-28th). Three Brent Geese flew over Carsington Water (1st), with two at Long Eaton GP (14th) and three at Haddon Fields (18th). The Long-tailed Duck remained at Long Eaton GP (to 22nd). The two Velvet Scoters remained at Staunton Harold Reservoir all month. Iceland Gulls were at Ogston Reservoir (4th-9th, 9th-11th and 28th-29th), and Pools Brook CP (11th). Up to five Glaucous Gulls roosted at Foremark Reservoir (from 14th). Others were at Ogston Reservoir (9th, 14th and 23rd), Carr Vale (17th) and over Aston-on-trent GP (26th). The Dusky Thrush remained at Beeley Village. The Great Grey Shrike was on Beeley Moor intermittently. ASTON-ON-TRENT GP: There were 24 Goldeneyes, four Goosanders, two Little Egrets, 20 Whitefronts, two Smew, a Pintail, Water Rail, Caspian Gull, Stonechat and Chiffchaff. CARR VALE: Highlights included 29 Whooper Swans, 420 Pinkfeet, an Egyptian Goose, 19 Goosanders, a Red Kite, Merlin, two Peregrines, three Water Rails, 18 Snipe, ten Golden Plovers, a Jack Snipe, Woodcock, 90 Stock Doves, 30 Skylarks, four Chiffchaffs, two Ravens, a Barn Owl, two Siberian Chiffchaffs, a Cetti’s Warbler and Lesser Redpoll. CARSINGTON WATER: There were 38 Whooper Swans, 29 Barnacle Geese, 17 Goldeneyes, 24 Goosanders, an Oystercatcher, Ruff, eight Golden Plovers, a Knot, nine Dunlin, four Jack Snipe, 95 Snipe, four Woodcocks, three Redshanks, a Curlew, Yellow-legged Gull, Cetti’s Warbler, two Ravens, a Brambling, 35 Siskins and eight Lesser Redpolls. CHURCH WILNE RESERVOIR: Fifteen Goldeneyes, a Smew, two Caspian Gulls and 60 Goldfinches were the pick. DRAKELOW: There were 167 Cormorants, a Little Egret, Whooper Swan, two Egyptian Geese, seven Goldeneyes, 13 Goosanders, four Water Rails, two Pintails, a Scaup, Oystercatcher, Green Sandpiper, four Woodcocks, a Mediterranean Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, two Cetti’s Warblers, a Chiffchaff and two Ravens. LONG EATON GP: There were three Little Egrets, three Red-crested Pochards, five Goldeneyes, 17 Goosanders, 16 Whooper Swans, a Common Scoter, two Oystercatchers and two Ravens. OGSTON RESERVOIR: There was a Little Egret, nine Whooper Swans, 150 Pinkfeet, six Goldeneyes, 15 Goosanders, two Pintails, a Goshawk, two Peregrines, 550 Lapwings, 59 Snipe, three Woodcocks, a Ringed Plover, four Caspian Gulls, four Yellow-legged Gulls, two Dippers, two Ravens, 42 Siskins and a Brambling. WILLINGTON GP: There was a Bittern, four Goldeneyes, six Goosanders, a Scaup, Oystercatcher, eight Curlews, a Greenshank and three Black-tailed Godwits. OTHER SITES: Foremark Reservoir logged seven Caspian Gulls and a Yellow-legged Gull. A Greenshank was at Highbridge GP. Fourteen Hawfinches were at Cromford. Waxwings included 200 at Chesterfield, 120 at Newbold, 100 in Glossop, 70 over Heage and 60 in Ilkeston. Rod Key
COTSWOLDS: The Blue Rock Thrush remained at Stow-on-the-wold. A Tree Sparrow was in Upper Rissington (27th). A Hen Harrier was at Sherborne Water Meadows (19th-20th). Two Black Redstarts were at Todenham (2nd). At the Cotswold Water Park, a Great White Egret was at pit 41 (14th) and a Siberian Chiffchaff at Shorncote (4th). A Firecrest was at Wallbridge, Stroud (15th). A Merlin was at Hawling (5th). Golden Plovers included 260 at Sherborne, 230 at Winstone and 200 at Calcot. A Grey Plover flew over Shab Hill (8th). Ten Grey Partridges were at Harnhill and eight at Ashley. Fifteen Bramblings were at Duntisbourne Abbots. FOREST OF DEAN: The Great Grey Shrike remained at Crabtree Hill, with another at Staple Edge Wood. Twelve Hawfinches were at Parkend and one in a Cinderford garden. Crossbills included 52 at Serridge Ridge, 23 at Staple Edge Wood and 22 at Drybrook Road Station. There were 32 Bramblings at Serridge. Goosanders included eight at Mallards Pike, five at Woorgreens, four at Speech House Lake and two at Cannop Ponds and Symonds Yat. LOWER SEVERN VALE: Seven Common Scoters were at Arlingham Passage (17th), where a Grey Plover flew downriver (4th). The Richard’s Pipit remained at Arlingham. Four Cattle Egrets regularly roosted at Frampton Pools and were often seen at Saul. A Great White Egret, 22 Little Egrets, a Pink-footed Goose (11th) and two Goldeneyes were also noted. A Marsh Harrier, two Water Pipits and a Green Sandpiper were at Splatt Bridge. Sharpness held four Black Redstarts. Berkeley Shore had six Rock Pipits, a Water Pipit, Knot, 15 Turnstones and two Jack Snipe. A Water Pipit (31st), two Whimbrels and a Turnstone were at Beachley Point. Eight Bewick’s Swans and 260 Golden Plovers were at Rodley (7th). SLIMBRIDGE: Highlights included a Lapland Bunting (29th-31st), four Bitterns, 157 Bewick’s Swans, three Whooper Swans, 164 Whitefronts, two Little Egrets, five Water Rails, 15 Cranes from the Great Crane Project, a Goshawk, three Peregrines, a Marsh Harrier, Short-eared Owl, 3,200 Lapwings, 590 Golden Plovers, 25 Knot, 780 Dunlin, a Little Stint, 157 Snipe, 18 Redshanks, a Spotted Redshank, 243 Black-tailed Godwits, 252 Curlews and 21 Ruff. UPPER SEVERN VALE: Black Redstarts were at Deerhurst (18th) and Tewkesbury Abbey. Two Great White Egrets and two Jack Snipe were near the sailing club. A Lesser Spotted Woodpecker was at Forthampton (22nd). A
Merlin was at Severn Ham (26th). Two Jack Snipe and a Green Sandpiper were at Leigh Meadows (14th). Two Jack Snipe were at Coombe Hill Meadows and one at Horsbere Brook flood storage area. WAXWINGS: There were 30 at Cinderford, 14 in Cirencester, 41 in Swindon Road, Cheltenham, 30 at Kingsway in Gloucester, 30 at Bussage, 20 at Highleadon, 12 at Cainscross, 14 over Painswick and 23 over Whitminster. Andy Jayne (01452 506 502), Martin Mcgill and www.theglosterbirder.co.uk LEICESTERSHIRE HIGHLIGHTS: The Glossy Ibis remained at Cossington and Watermead CP (to 10th). Flocks of Waxwings became more numerous, including 70 in both Loughborough (13th) and Leicester (19th), 44 in Hinckley (6th), 40 in Burbage (11th) and 30 in South Wigston (23rd). CHARNWOOD: Swithland Reservoir had a Pink-footed Goose (2nd), 40 Mandarins (4th), 80 Shovelers (30th) and 41 Goldeneyes (2nd). A Green Sandpiper was at Cropston Reservoir (2nd). A Firecrest was near Groby Pool (24th-28th). EYEBROOK RESERVOIR: There were Glaucous Gulls (1st and 7th), an Iceland Gull (4th-6th) and a Mediterranean Gull (22nd). Wildfowl included five Whooper Swans (5th), seven Smew (14th), four Red-crested Pochards (6th) and a Scaup (4th). There were 27 Dunlin (1st), a Green Sandpiper (1st) and two Stonechats. NORTH-WEST LEICESTERSHIRE: Five Whooper Swans remained near Sence Valley Forest Park (to 7th). Albion Landfill Site attracted four Glaucous Gulls, two Iceland Gulls and 38 Ravens. A Smew was on Albert Village Lake (20th) OTHER SITES: A Hen Harrier was at Welby (2nd). Cotesbach Landfill Site attracted a Glaucous Gull and Iceland Gull. The Long-tailed Duck was again on Stanford Reservoir (20th-29th). Thirty Bramblings were at Owston (25th). Steve Lister (01509 829 495, www.lros.org.uk)
HIGHLIGHTS: A Cattle Egret, the sixth county record, was near Whiston (7th). A Long-tailed Duck at Stanford Reservoir and a Slavonian Grebe at Pitsford Reservoir remained throughout. A Glaucous Gull was near Chacombe and roosted at Boddington Reservoir (22nd). A Hen Harrier was at Lutton (12th) and Polebrook Airfield (15th). Three Great White Egrets were at Earls Barton GP, Pitsford and Ravensthorpe reservoirs, with singles at Ditchford GP and Thrapston GP. Waxwings arrived in force, including 38 in Kettering, 25 in the Boothville area of Northampton, 20 in Moulton, 20 at Great Billing, 15 in Roade, 14 at Hanging Houghton, nine at Stanion, eight at Broughton, eight at Bulwick, seven at Woodford Halse, seven at Earls Barton GP, three at Sywell and one in Daventry. DITCHFORD: Two Smew, two Red-crested Pochards, a Green Sandpiper and Jack Snipe were recorded. EARLS BARTON: Bitterns were noted (15th and 22nd). Up to 23 White-fronted Geese occasionally visited White Mills Marina and CLIFFORD HILL GP. Five Scaup, a Smew, two Red-crested Pochards, three Pintails, a Marsh Harrier (3rd), Jack Snipe, Short-eared Owl and a Whooper Swan were noted. PITSFORD: Five Bewick’s Swans flew over (5th). There were two Caspian Gulls, a Yellow-legged Gull, Mediterranean Gull, Smew, two Red-crested Pochards, ten Pintails, four White-fronted Geese, 40 Snipe, three Green Sandpipers, two Redshanks, a Dunlin, Stonechat, two Bramblings and a Peregrine. STANFORD RESERVOIR: A Marsh Harrier (15th) was a good record. Sixty-four Goosanders was the highest county total for some time. There was a Scaup, Smew, three Pintails, a Red-crested Pochard, 43 Snipe, a Jack Snipe and Caspian Gull. STANWICK GP: There was a Scaup, Smew, two Redshanks, a Peregrine and Caspian Gull. OTHER SITES: Fifteen Whooper Swans flew over Fotheringhay (19th) and one remained at Sywell CP. A White-fronted Goose was at Kislingbury GP. Hollowell Reservoir hosted a Caspian Gull, Barnacle Goose and six Stonechats. Six Short-eared Owls were at Neville’s Lodge near Finedon. A Bittern was at Thrapston GP. Mediterranean and Caspian Gulls visited Daventry CP. A Merlin was near Braybrooke. Four Caspian Gulls were around Rushton Landfill, with two more near Chacombe. Two Jack Snipe remained at Barnes Meadow. A Corn Bunting, now a rarity here, was at Harrington Airfield (22nd). Bob Bullock 01604 627 262
HIGHLIGHTS: A Great Northern Diver was at Hoveringham (from 21st). Waxwings included 140 in Hucknall and 100 in Mansfield. A tundra Bean Goose was at Barton-in-fabis (from 21st), with two at Holme Pierrepont (29th). ATTENBOROUGH: Whooper Swans peaked at 28 flying over. There were 68 Goosanders, three Pintails, a Scaup (22nd), Bittern, Great White Egret (27th), Oystercatchers, a Jack Snipe, Ruff, Stonechat and Rock Pipit. The Starling roost built up to 6,000 birds. HOVERINGHAM: There were five White-fronted Geese, some Pinkfeet, small groups of Whooper Swans, a Smew, Red-breasted Merganser, two Pintails, a Great White Egret (12th), Redshank, Green Sandpiper, 12 Golden Plovers, three Glaucous Gulls, two Iceland Gulls, two Caspian Gulls and several Mediterranean and Yellow-legged Gulls. Bramblings were regular. LOUND/IDLE VALLEY: A Great white Egret was present throughout, with another (19th). Some 100 Whooper Swans, four Whitefronts and a Pintail were noted. A Mediterranean Gull, two Yellow-legged Gulls, a Caspian Gull and Glaucous Gull roosted. A Short-eared Owl, Merlin, Hen Harrier, two Marsh Harriers and a Red Kite hunted. There were three Ruff, a Redshank, Green Sandpipers, Woodcock, 16 Golden Plovers, a Siberian Chiffchaff (1st), Brambling, Stonechat, 300 Lesser Redpolls and a Mealy Redpoll. OTHER SITES: Whooper Swans were widespread. Whitefronts were at Cottam (three), Girton (two) Collingham (nine) and Misson. Two Smew were at Kilvington, with six at Holme Pierrepont. Scaup were at Kilvington and Stoke Bardolph. The Garganey remained at Eakring Flash. There were 81 Mandarins at Welbeck. Great White Egrets were at Holme Pierrepont (14th and 28th-30th) and Kilvington. Bitterns were at Langford and Netherfield. A Slavonian Grebe was at Collingham (from 21st). Iceland Gulls were at King’s Mill Reservoir in Mansfield and over Budby. Yellow-legged and Mediterranean Gulls roosted at King’s Mill. A Glaucous, Iceland and several Caspian Gulls were at Cotham Landfill. Seven Curlews were at Collingham, with another at Kilvington. A wintering Common Sandpiper and Siberian Chiffchaff were at Holme Pierrepont. Green Sandpipers were at Netherfield and Calverton. A Dunlin was at Kilvington and a Black tailed Godwit at Besthorpe. Jack Snipe were at Netherfield and Collingham, with 28 Snipe at King’s Mill Reservoir. Marsh Harriers were at Langford and Walkeringham. A Hen Harrier, Merlin and 43 Corn Buntings were at Gringley. A Red Kite was at Keyworth. Short-eared Owls were at Kilvington, Harworth and Gringley. A Lesser Spotted Woodpecker and Ring-necked Parakeet were at Wollaton, with another parakeet at Ruddington. Stonechats were at Gedling (three), Thrumpton and Netherfield. Langford held seven Bearded Tits. A Firecrest was at Bestwood. Nine Hawfinches were at Rufford, with others seen at Clumber. Six Crossbills were at Budby and one at Centre Parcs. Ravenshead had 100 Bramblings. Tom Shields
OTMOOR: A Cattle Egret was seen (5th). Waders included 3,000 Lapwings, 2,000 Golden Plovers and a Dunlin. Three Marsh Harriers, two Hen Harriers, a Peregrine, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Merlin, Tawny Owl, Barn Owl and Short-eared Owl hunted. Other regulars included a Marsh Tit, Shelduck, three Bitterns and four White-fronted Geese. Fergus Mosey
HIGHLIGHTS: At Rutland Water, the Surf Scoter remained (to 11th) and the Green-winged Teal (to 31st). A Cattle Egret was at Egleton (5th). Up to 22 Waxwings were at Oakham (2nd-8th) with two at Manton (16th). RUTLAND WATER: A Red-necked, two
Slavonian and three Black-necked Grebes were present all month, with three Bitterns (23rd) and five Great White Egrets. There were seven Whooper Swans (17th-21st), 34 Red-crested Pochards (28th), seven Scaup (20th), 14 Smew (23rd), a Common Scoter (to 8th) and the Ruddy Duck (all month). The count (15th) produced 4,118 Wigeon, 733 Gadwall, 1,667 Teal, 2,579 Tufted Ducks, 295 Goldeneyes, 2,019 Lapwings, 73 Dunlin, ten Curlews, a Green Sandpiper and ten Redshanks. A Whimbrel was present all month. Two Caspian Gulls roosted (14th). A Mediterranean Gull was noted (18th). A Peregrine was regular at Egleton, where there were two Stonechats and small numbers of Siskins and Lesser Redpolls. Fourteen Tree Sparrows visited Lyndon Centre feeders. OTHER SITES: There were two Mandarins at Banthorpe GP. Fort Henry Ponds had 104 Gadwall (13th) and a Water Rail, Stonechat and three Tree Sparrows (8th). Some 200 Golden Plovers were near Pickworth. Woodcocks were at Fort Henry, Tunneley and Westland Woods, Wing and Leighfield. Barn Owls were at five sites. Willow Tits were at Leighfield Fishponds and Pilton. Up to 42 Bramblings roosted at Leighfield. There were 110 Yellowhammers at Mounts Lodge (24th). Terry Mitcham
HIGHLIGHTS: A Pine Bunting at Venus Pool (1st-6th) was the first county record. A Green-winged Teal was there (8th). Six tundra Bean Geese at Cranmere Bog (from 12th) were joined by an Egyptian Goose (21st-22nd) and five Eurasian White-fronted Geese (27th-28th). The Bean Geese also roosted at Chelmarsh Reservoir (23rd). The two Long-tailed Ducks remained on Whitemere, Ellesmere (to 20th), with another on Chetwynd Pool (4th-22nd). Waxwings included 50 in Oswestry, 20 in Shrewsbury, 40 in Market Drayton, 23 in Whitchurch, 20 in Hanwood and singles in Bishop’s Castle and Alveley. OTHER SITES: A Glaucous Gull roosted on The Mere, Ellesmere (21st). Three Scaup were on Colemere (14th). A Hen Harrier hunted regularly at Whixall Moss. Four Bewick’s Swans and three Whooper Swans were in the Venus Pool area throughout. A Common Scoter was at Chelmarsh Reservoir (16th-17th). Richard Moores and Martyn Owen (www. Shropshirebirds.com)
HIGHLIGHTS: A Temminck’s Stint was at Branston GP (2nd-27th). A Siberian Chiffchaff was at Blithfield Reservoir (3rd). Great White Egrets were at Middleton Lakes throughout, with a Scaup there (1st). Other Great White Egrets were at Doxey Marshes (19th) and Aqualate Park (22nd-31st), with a Scaup at the former. A possible Rough-legged Buzzard was near Leek (23rd). The Velvet Scoter remained at Chasewater. A Yellow-browed Warbler was at Whittington (11th-13th). A Water Pipit was at Doxey Marshes (20th). A Wood Sandpiper was at Radford Meadows (20th). Three tundra Bean Geese were around Whitmore (7th-31st).
HIGHLIGHTS: A Yellow-browed Warbler at Brandon Marsh was a site first. Four tundra Bean Geese were in Nuneaton (28th). A Red-necked Grebe was at Draycote. A wintering Whitethroat was in Church Lawford. ALVECOTE POOLS: There were nine Whooper Swans, two Barnacle Geese, a Scaup, Great White Egret, 14 Little Egrets, an Oystercatcher and Shelduck. Waxwing, BRANDON Caspian MARSH: Gull A and Bittern, Great Woodcock, Black-backed Gull were noted. Grebe, DRAYCOTE Smew, WATER:six Scaup, Therea Commonwas a Red-neckedScoter, Iceland, Yellow-legged Glaucous, Gulls, Mediterranean,Pintail, Dunlin, Caspian Redshank, and Short-eared Owl, two Grey Plovers, Tree Sparrows and Little Egrets. EARLSWOOD: Highlights included a Water Rail, Raven, Marsh Tit, Snipe and Woodcock. Two Little Egrets were on the River Cole. KINGSBURY WP: A Red-crested Pochard, Curlew, Yellow-legged Gull, Jack Snipe and 16 Little Egrets were seen. LADYWALK: There was a Siberian Chiffchaff, Great White Egret, two Little Egrets, a Mandarin, Pintail, Oystercatcher, Marsh Tit, Peregrine, Stock Doves and a Bittern. MIDDLETON RSPB: There was a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Great White Egret, Shelducks, Cetti’s Warblers, Water Rails, a record 61 Little Egrets and 100 Golden Plovers. MORTON BAGOT: Raven, Peregrine, Green Sandpiper, Jack Snipe and 50 Golden Plovers were the pick. SALFORD PRIORS: There were Yellow-legged and Great Black-backed Gulls, a Jack Snipe, Green Sandpiper, Peregrine, Raven, 25 Pochards and 310 Golden Plovers. TAME VALLEY: Cotton Lakes logged a Red-crested Pochard, Pintail, Oystercatcher, Great Black-backed, Yellow-legged, Mediterranean and Glaucous Gulls. The Siberian Chiffchaffs remained at Hams Hall. A Scaup and 30 Waxwings were at Dosthill. Jack Snipe were at Hemlingford and Shustoke. A Merlin and Pintail were at Lea Marston. OTHER SITES: Six Bearded Tits were at Napton. Yellow-legged, Iceland, Glaucous and Caspian Gulls were at Bubbenhall. Waxwings were in Wolston and 24 in Hillmorton. Clare Topping
HIGHLIGHTS: The Dipper remained on the Bourn Brook, Harborne/selly Oak. Waxwings included 241 at Brownhills and 100 at Castle Vale with reports of up to 50 from a number of sites. There were 32 White-fronted Geese on Swan Pool Meadow, Sandwell Valley near the month’s end. Bitterns were at Dudley and Wolverhampton. BARTLEY RESERVOIR: There were two Iceland Gulls, and a Glaucous Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Mediterranean Gull and Caspian Gull. MARSH LANE: The Cetti’s Warbler remained. There was an Egyptian Goose, Stonechat, two Jack Snipe, and over 500 Teal and Wigeon. Around 1,000 Starlings roosted. SANDWELL VALLEY: There was a Great White Egret, Barn Owl, Goshawk, two Waxwings, three Whooper Swans, six Bewick’s or Whooper Swans, a Yellow-legged Gull, Marsh and Willow Tits, two Pintails and ten Jack Snipe. OTHER SITES: Fens Pools hosted an Iceland Gull and Yellow-legged Gulls. An Iceland Gull was an excellent record from Edgbaston Pool. Six Ring-necked Parakeets were at Park Lime Pits. An Icelandic-race Redwing was at Halesowen. Ten Golden Plovers flew over Lutley which also hosted two Stonechats. Pete Hackett (0121 358 2454)
AVON VALLEY: Four Short-eared Owls were on Bredon Hill. Two Great White Egrets were at Bredon’s Hardwick. Eighty Golden Plovers were at Bricklehampton. A Waxwing was seen at Evesham. CENTRAL: A Great White Egret was at Croome Park. Three Scaup and four Goldeneyes were at Grimley. Two Pintails were at Holt. A Merlin was Mucknell. Two Scaup, a Pintail and Goldeneye were at Westwood Pool. The Black Redstart remained on Worcester Cathedral. Golden Plovers were at Bredicot (252), Egdon (57), Stoulton (15) and Worcester (125). Waxwings were at Droitwich (11) and Worcester (14). LOWER SEVERN VALLEY: Five White-fronted Geese, a Great White Egret and two Goldeneyes were at Ripple. NORTH: A Glaucous Gull was at Arrow Valley Lake. Two Caspian Gulls, five Yellow-legged Gulls, a Goldeneye and eight Pintails were at Bittell Reservoirs. Six Crossbills were at Eymore Wood. An Iceland Gull, Mediterranean Gull and Pintail were at Hagley. Two Mealy Redpolls were in the Wyre Forest. Crossbills were at Eymore Wood (six) and Lickey Hills (four). Waxwings were in good numbers at Bromsgrove (13), Chaddesley Corbett (three), Hartlebury (23), Kidderminster (37), Stoke Prior (seven) and Tardebigge (four). UPTON WARREN: Highlights included a Hen Harrier, two Whooper Swans, Scaup and Caspian Gull. Brian Stretch (www.worcesterbirding.co.uk)
Waxwings, Ilkeston, Derbyshire 5 January
Blue Rock Thrush, Stow-on-the-wold, Gloucestershire, 2 January