January & February  

These months are normally quiet, I tend to look at inland reservoirs for wintering Divers and Grebes, Chew Valley Lake is always a good bet for a Great Northern Diver, I also head out onto Salisbury Plain for Hen Harriers and Short eared owls, a slow drive across just before dusk normally gets you one or both species along with Barn Owls 

Slimbridge in Gloucestershire is brilliant for Ducks, Swans and Geese, all giving very close views from the many hides.

The Cotswold Water Park is well worth a visit with so many pits to look at there is always something to find, there should be Goosander, Goldeneye, Red Crested Pochard and with a little luck Smew and Scaup, try pits 29, 30, 44, 57 and 74, if you are out late then try pit 74 or 16 for a gull roost, I have found Iceland, Glaucous and Caspian Gulls here in the past

Severn Beach area can also be very good for Wildfowl, the best area is between the 2 motorway bridges at Northwick Warth / New Passage area looking upriver from the last house, and this is also good for Water Pipits.

Reports in RED are my own sightings (number) = total species seen this year so far


Recent Bird records (South Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and the old county of Avon)

February Sightings



Glaucous Gull at Slimbridge

6 Hawfinchs in Prior Park Bath


3 Surf Scoters, Velvet Scoter, 12 Common Scoters and a Long Tailed Duck at Lower Porthpean Cornwall (153)

Ring Billed Gull at Newquay

Pacific Diver and 6+ Great Northern Divers at Newlyn

Spoonbill, 2 Yellow Legged Gulls, 5+ Mediterranean Gulls, 8 Grey Plover, 10+ Bar Tailed Godwits, 3 Sanderlings on the Hayle Estuary

4 Water Pipits at Chapel Amble

Lesser Scaup, 4 Goldeneye, Pochard and 20+ tufted Ducks on Dozmary Pool Bodmin Moor

American Wigeon with 80+ Wigeon at Matford, Exeter


Penduline Tit still in Gloucester


Ring Necked Duck and Iceland Gull on pit 16 of the Cotswold Water Park


Goshawk, 15 Red Kite, 2 Willow Tit, 5+ Marsh Tit, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, 15+ Crossbill, 100+ Siskin, 2 Redpoll and 3 Brambling in the Savernake Forest area (142)

4 Tree Sparrows around Tan Hill (138)


Ring Billed Gull at Chew Valley Lake


A Singing Blackcap in Kingsgate Park Yate

3 Hawfinch in St Anne’s Church Oldland Bristol


18 Hawfinchs in Prior Park Bath


4 Short Eared Owls at Aust


Kumlein’s Gull, 2 Yellow Legged Gulls, Mediterranean Gull and a Great Northern Diver on pit 16 of the Cotswold water Park, also a Smew still on pit 28


Jack Snipe, 10+ Common Snipe, 1 water Rail, 2 Gadwall and 9 Teal in the Yate area. (137)

Snow Bunting just East of Barbury Castle Wiltshire

6 Ring Necked Parakeets in the Willsbridge / Siston Brook area of Bristol


Glaucous Gull Epney Gloucestershire


Gyr Falcon reported on the Mendips


Iceland Gull on pit 125 of the Cotswold water Park


Thayers Gull (a race of Iceland Gull) Yellow Legged Gull and a Mediterranean Gull at Tidpit Hampshire (136)

Stilt Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank, 2 Bar Tailed Godwits, 100+ Black Tailed Godwits at Stanpit Marsh Christchurch

Iceland Gull, Great Northern Diver on Pit 16 of the Cotswold Water Park


2 Cattle Egrets at Chew Valley Lake

3 Short Eared Owls at Aust Warth


Green Winged Teal, Ring Necked Duck, 7+ Great White Egrets, 20+ Little Egrets, 1000+ Teal, 6 Bearded Tits, 4 Marsh Harriers and 1 Bittern on the Somerset Levels (132)


Glossy Ibis, 11 Avocet, 2 Little Stint, 111 White Fronted Geese and a Spotted Redshank at Slimbridge

Richards Pipit at Arlington

Penduline Tit is still in Gloucester.


Smew on pit 28 of the Cotswold Water Park (129)

2 Grey Partridge and a Red Kite at Harnhill

Thayer's Gull, Tidpit
Thayer's Gull, Tidpit

Ring-billed gull, Newquay
Ring-billed gull, Newquay

Spoonbill, Hayle
Spoonbill, Hayle

Bullfinch, Kingsgate Park
Bullfinch, Kingsgate Park