December is one of the quietest months with only 154 species recorded during the month. It can be a good month for wildfowl with the chance of Red-breasted Merganser, Goosander and Ruddy Duck if inland waters freeze or some fly by Bewick’s Swans. A good selection of seabirds have occurred in December gales including Black-throated and Great Northern Divers, Leach’s Petrel, Little Auk, Grey Phalarope and Pomarine Skua. Other rarities have included Glaucous Gull and in the winters of 1940 & 1941, Cirl Bunting
Much of the same and a very quiet end to the year. A male Merlin, at least 300 Dunlin, 200 Lapwing, 100 Oystercatchers, 20 Redshank, 6 Turnstones, 200 Wigeon, 40 Teal and 32 Shelduck were seen from New Passage. The usual 12 Gadwall and 3 Tufted Duck were on the Orchard Pools. Three Stonechats and 2 Kestrels were reported from Aust Warth, At least 60 Lapwing were present at Avonmouth Sewage Works.
A gloomy day with persistent drizzle. The few reports received involved 500 Dunlin, 68 Oystercatchers, 20 Redshank, 70 Lapwing, 500 Wigeon, 120 Teal and 22 Shelduck from New Passage. Another 6 Redshank were seen from the shore at Severn Beach and 16 Gadwall and 6 Tufted Duck remained at the Orchard Pools. A Water Rail and a Jack Snipe were reported from Chittening Warth.
A cloudy day with rain and sleet. A brief visit at dusk to New Passage produced 600 Wigeon, 120 Teal, 22 Shelduck, 200 Dunlin and 40 Lapwing. The only other report was from Avonmouth Sewage Works involving 19 Gadwall, 31 Teal, 13 Mallard, 17 Shoveler, 16 Tufted Duck, 11 Coot and 7 Moorhens.
The quiet period continues with the large Wigeon and Teal flock, 10 Shelduck, 200 Lapwing, 100 Dunlin, 40 Oystercatchers, 30 Redshank and 13 Common Gulls reported from New Passage. The usual 22 Gadwall, 4 Tufted Duck, single Little Grebe and Great Spotted Woodpecker were seen at the Orchard Pools. Sightings from the Square Pool at Avonmouth Sewage Works included 2 Little Grebes, 22 Gadwall, 36 Teal, 27 Shoveler, 19 Tufted Duck and a Grey Wagtail.
Much of the same today with a Little Egret, 800 Wigeon, 150 Teal, 20 Shelduck, 200 Lapwing, 120 Dunlin, 43 Oystercatchers, 30 Redshank, 9 Turnstones and 15 Common Gulls reported from New Passage. At least 26 Gadwall and 6 Tufted Ducks remained on the Orchard Pools at Severn Beach. A Kingfisher was reported at the Hoar Gout/VOSA Pool.
The first frost free day for more than a week. Sightings from New Passage included a Little Egret, a Peregrine, 800 Wigeon, 150 Teal, 10 Shelduck, 5 Gadwall, 150 Lapwing, 200 Dunlin, 30 Redshank and 10 Common Gulls. Sightings from the shore at Severn Beach included 10 Ringed Plover, 35 Redshank, 40 Oystercatchers and 10 Shelduck. Nearby there were 25 Gadwall and 6 Tufted Duck at the Orchard Pools. A Stonechat remained on Aust Warth. Three Little Grebes, 27 Gadwall, 31 Teal, 21 Mallard, 19 Shoveler, 6 Pochard and 25 Tufted Duck were seen on the Square Pool at Avonmouth Sewage Works.
Yet another frosty start followed by a thaw, sunshine and blue sky. The flock of 800 Wigeon, 150 Teal, 5 Shelduck, 30 Redshank, 30 Lapwing, just 100 Dunlin and 5 Turnstones were seen from New Passage. Sightings from the shore at Severn Beach included 10 Ringed Plover, 20 Redshank, 60 Curlew, a Turnstone and 8 Shelduck. Nearby, 15 Gadwall and 5 Tufted Duck were seen on the small unfrozen area of the Orchard Pools.
Wigeon, New Passage 25.12.9
Another -3°C dawn. A late afternoon visit to New Passage produced at least 800 Wigeon, 200 Teal and 150 Dunlin. A male and female Merlin and a Stonechat were seen at Aust Warth. Two Woodcock were reported in fields behind the Grebe Pond on Northwick Warth.
The cold spell continued with another icy (-6°C) morning. Reports from New Passage involved 130 Dunlin, 190 Lapwing, 30 Redshank, 20 Curlew, 20 Oystercatchers, 360 Wigeon, 60 Teal, a Shoveler, 220 Black-headed Gulls and 4 Common Gulls. Two Little Grebes, 15 Gadwall, 40 Teal, 17 Shoveler, 4 Pochard, 26 Tufted Duck, 170 Black-headed Gulls and 5 Common Gulls were seen on the Square Pool at Avonmouth Sewage Works. Nearby a Blackcap and a Chiffchaff were present at Hoar Gout/VOSA Pool where 110 Lapwing and 13 Golden Plover flew overhead.
Another night of sleet and frost with icy fog at dawn. No reports were received today.
Snow and sleet during the night with freezing temperatures (-4°C) resulted in dangerous driving conditions and poor coverage today. A 10 minute, low tide visit to New Passage at dusk produced just a Merlin, at least 500 Wigeon, 200 Teal, 20 Shelduck, 300 Lapwing and 30 Redshank. The presumed heated Square Pool at Avonmouth Sewage Works remained wholly ice free (the only ice free pool for miles) attracting an amazing number and variety on just 150 x 150 metre pond including 3 adult Mediterranean Gulls, 140 Black-head Gulls, 3 Common Gulls, 4 Little Grebes, 24 Gadwall, 80 Teal, 6 Mallard, 18 Shoveler, 9 Pochard, 22 Tufted Duck, 8 Coot, 48 Lapwing, a Snipe, 2 Grey Wagtails and a Chiffchaff.
Much of the same today with 250 Dunlin, 30 Redshank, 50 Oystercatchers, 500 Wigeon, 200 Teal, 21 Shelduck being reported from New Passage and a Stonechat and a Raven at Aust Warth.
Wigeon, New Passage 20.12.9
A an icy (-5°C) but less windy day. Sightings from New Passage involved 300 Dunlin, 200 Lapwing, 40 Redshank, 30 Curlew, a Snipe, 2 Turnstones, at least 600 Wigeon, 250 Teal, 2 Shelduck, 4 Gadwall and a Stonechat. Another 2 Stonechats, 2 Ravens, a Peregrine and 2 Kestrels were seen at Aust Warth. A visit to the almost completely frozen Orchard Pools at Severn Beach produced 2 Little Grebes, 14 Coot and 5 Moorhens.
A bitterly cold day with a north wind giving a -8°C wind chill. A morning high tide visit to the shore at Severn Beach produced 90 Curlew, 25 Oystercatchers, 2 Turnstones, 30 Dunlin and 21 Shelduck. Reports from the Northwick Warth area included 250 Dunlin, 60 Oystercatchers, 40 Lapwing, 50 Redshank, 6 Snipe, 40 Curlew, 200 Teal, 200 Wigeon and a Peregrine. Reports from Aust Warth this afternoon involved 2 Bewick’s Swans flying north east, single Snipe, Stonechat and Peregrine. A good number of duck were seen again on the Square Pool at Avonmouth Sewage Works including 60 Teal, 18 Gadwall, 6 Pochard, 8 Shoveler and 22 Tufted Duck.
Another cold day with an eye watering north east wind. Sightings from New Passage included 200 Dunlin, 50 Lapwing, 30 Oystercatchers, 40 Redshank, 50 Curlew, 400 Wigeon, 100 Teal, 10 Common Gulls and a Kingfisher. The usual 18 Gadwall, 3 Pochard and 2 Tufted Duck were seen on the Orchard Pools at Severn Beach and another 100 Lapwing were seen in flight inland over Aust Warth. A Siberian Chiffchaff was heard and seen well near Avonmouth Sewage Works where an influx of waterfowl was noted including 5 Little Grebes, 22 Gadwall, 45 Teal, 8 Pochard, 10 Shoveler, 24 Tufted Duck, 5 Moorhens, 11 Coot and a Green Sandpiper.
Sightings from a murky New Passage involved just 500 Dunlin, 120 Lapwing, 52 Redshank, 32 Oystercatchers, 500 Wigeon and 100 Teal. The usual 16 Gadwall, 4 Tufted Duck, 2 Teal and a Pochard were reported from the Orchard Pools at Severn Beach.
The only report received today was from Avonmouth Sewage Works where a Little Grebe, 7 Gadwall, 9 Teal, 6 Pochard, 9 Shoveler and 20 Tufted Duck were seen.
A cold (5°C) and grey day. The only reports from New Passage involved a Little Egret, 68 Oystercatchers, 40 Lapwing, 40 Redshank, just 20 Dunlin, 18 Common Gulls and fewer Wigeon and Teal. A Water Rail and 2 Snipe were reported from Chittening Warth.
Another day with a north east breeze. Reports New Passage included 2 Little Egrets, 250 Dunlin, 73 Oystercatchers, 50 Lapwing, 40 Redshank, 30 Curlew, 70 Teal, 30 Wigeon and 21 Common Gulls. Another 300 Teal, 250 Wigeon and 40 Redshank were seen at Aust Warth. Sightings from the shore at Severn Beach involved 18 Shelduck, 15 Redshank, 40 Curlew and 5 Ringed Plover and 12 Gadwall and 4 Tufted Duck remained on the Orchard Pools.
Teal, New Passage 13.12.9
Little Egrets, New Passage 13.12.9
No fog today due to cold north east wind. Sightings from the Northwick Warth area included a female Merlin, a Little Egret, a Jack Snipe, 9 Snipe, 120 Dunlin, 60 Redshank, 45 Oystercatchers, 75 Lapwing, 30 Curlew, 4 Turnstones, 120 Teal, 40 Wigeon, 2 Shelduck and female Blackcap. Another 250 Teal, 90 Wigeon, 30 Redshank, a Stonechat and 2 Rock Pipits were reported from Aust Warth. The Severn Beach shore remained quiet with just 12 Shelduck, 20 Oystercatchers and 15 Redshank being reported.
Merlin, Northwick Warth 12.12.9
A typical view of one of these “missile falcons” waiting to launch after the local Pipits and Skylarks.
A cold and foggy morning with unknown numbers of Redshank, Wigeon and Teal being heard only at New Passage. Reports from the Orchard Pools at Severn Beach involved 12 Gadwall, 3 Tufted Duck and a calling Water Rail. Reports from the Avonmouth Sewage Works area involved an adult Mediterranean Gull, 2 Little Grebes, just 6 Gadwall, 22 Teal, 13 Shoveler, 6 Pochard and 19 Tufted Duck.
Another quiet day with just 65 Redshank, 50 Lapwing, 30 Dunlin, 10 Oystercatchers, 12 Turnstones, 30 Common Gulls, 200 Wigeon, 100 Teal, 12 Shelduck and 3 Grey Herons reported from New Passage. Another 25 Turnstones and 28 Oystercatchers were seen on the estuary at Severn Beach and a Water Rail, 10 Gadwall and 7 Tufted Duck were reported at the Orchard Pools.
Fewer birds were reported from New Passage with just 500 Dunlin, 100 Lapwing, 60 Redshank, 45 Turnstones, 40 Curlew, 65 Common Gulls, much smaller numbers of Wigeon and Teal and a Stonechat being seen. Sightings from Severn Beach involved just 16 Oystercatchers and 50 Curlew from the river and 14 Gadwall and 5 Tufted Duck at the Orchard Pools.
Reports from New Passage involved 1000 Dunlin, 80 Redshank, 135 Lapwing, 50 Curlew, 12 Shelduck and the usual Wigeon and Teal flocks. Eighteen Gadwall and 5 Tufted Ducks remained on the Orchard Pools at Severn Beach. Another 15 Gadwall, 18 Teal, 9 Pochard, 12 Shoveler, 23 Tufted Ducks, a Kingfisher and 2 Chiffchaffs were seen in the Avonmouth Sewage Works area.
Another wet and windy day with little change in sightings. The 3 Brent Geese, 1000 Dunlin, 80 Redshank, 75 Lapwing, 30 Oystercatchers, 40 Curlew, 22 Shelduck, 350+ Teal and 400 Wigeon were seen from New Passage. Another 9 Shelduck were seen from the shore at Severn Beach and nearby 22 Gadwall and 6 Tufted Duck were seen on the Orchard Pools. Sightings from the Avonmouth Sewage Works area included 2 Mute Swans, 17 Gadwall, 15 Teal, 6 Pochard, 16 Shoveler, 23 Tufted Duck and a Chiffchaff.
A breezy day following a wet and windy night. A Grey Phalarope (3rd record this year) was found swimming off the shaft beach at Severn Beach before it flew off south at 10.40. Other sightings from Severn Beach included 17 Kittiwakes, 60 Turnstones, 20 Lapwing, 60 Curlew, a Ringed Plover and 8 Shelduck. Reports from New Passage included the 3 dark-bellied Brent Geese, 14 Shelduck, 400 Teal, 300 Wigeon, 150 Redshank, 40 Turnstones, 1200 Dunlin,100 Lapwing, 80 Oystercatchers, 40 Curlew and a Snipe. Another 9 Snipe and 30 Skylarks were reported from Aust Warth.
A warmer but increasingly wet day. Reports from Northwick Warth included a female type Merlin, 3 dark-bellied Brent Geese, 2000 Dunlin, 60 Redshank, 100 Lapwing, 70 Oystercatchers, 50 Curlew, 2 Grey Plover, 17 Shelduck, 3 Pintail, 350 Teal, 400 Wigeon and a Stonechat. Severn Beach remained quiet with just 9 Shelduck on the river and 14 Gadwall and 6 Tufted Duck at the Orchard Pools.
A cold and frosty morning(-2°C) produced an influx of birds. An adult male Merlin was seen this morning at Northwick Warth causing panic to a flock of at least 2000 Dunlin. Other sightings here included 200 Lapwing, 70 Redshank, 90 Oystercatchers, just 5 Turnstones, 60 Curlew, a Little Egret, a Jack Snipe, 8 Snipe, 3 dark-bellied Brent Geese, 8 Shelduck, an impressive 400 Teal and 550 Wigeon. The only reports from Severn Beach were of 9 Shelduck on the river and 6 Tufted Duck at the Orchard Pools. Another 30 Redshank, a Snipe were seen at Aust Warth where a search of the high tide line produced 2 dead Gannets.
Brent Geese, Northwick Warth 4.12.9
The three dark-bellied Brent Geese, just 150 Dunlin, 52 Oystercatchers, 50 Redshank, 50 Lapwing, 30 Curlew, 24 Common Gulls, 350 Wigeon and 100 Teal were seen from New Passage. Ten Gadwall, 3 Teal and a Tufted Duck were present on the Orchard Pools at Severn Beach. A Little Grebe, 13 Gadwall, 12 Teal, 5 Pochard, 14 Shoveler, 19 Tufted Duck, a Grey Wagtail and a calling Cetti’s Warbler were reported from Avonmouth Sewage Works.
A warmer but wet day. Three dark-bellied Brent Geese, 6 Shoveler, 350 Wigeon, 100 Teal, 1500 Dunlin, 250 Lapwing, 50 Oystercatchers, 40 Redshank and 2 Turnstones were seen from New Passage. The first Snow Bunting of the year flew north over Aust Warth this morning where a Snipe, 4 Redshank, 5 Curlew, 8 Oystercatchers, 10 Wigeon and 6 Teal were also present.
A freezing start to the month (-3°C). Reports from New Passage included 600 Dunlin, 200 Lapwing, 60 Redshank, 50 Oystercatchers, 350 Wigeon, 100 Teal and 10 Common Gulls. Eight Gadwall, a Tufted Duck and a Great Spotted Woodpecker were seen at the Orchard Pools, Severn Beach. A female Merlin, 2 Kestrels, a Sparrowhawk and a Green Woodpecker were reported from Aust Warth. Reports from the Avonmouth Sewage Works area involved a Little Grebe, 8 Gadwall, 34 Teal, 3 Mallard, 10 Shoveler, 5 Pochard, 17 Tufted Duck, 10 Coots, 5 Moorhens, a Mute Swan and 70 Lapwing.