SEVERNSIDE BIRDS
























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December is one of the quietest months with only 164 species recorded during the month. It can be a good month for wildfowl with the chance of Red-breasted Merganser and Goosander 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 a stunning male Desert Wheatear (2013), Green-winged Teal (2013), Egyptian Goose (2013), Glaucous Gull, Waxwing (2010) and in the winters of 1940 & 1941, Cirl Bunting.                                          




December 2017


31st December
A wet and dreary end to the year; a Kingfisher was reported at Seabank Pools, Chittening Warth and a male Blackcap remained in a Severn Beach garden.

30th December
Reports from the Northwick Warth area included 44 Shelduck, 340 Teal, 16 Tufted Duck, 15 Gadwall, 6 Shoveler, 250+ Wigeon, 81 Stock Doves, 2 Ravens, single Water Pipit, Merlin and Peregrine. Three Blackcaps were reported in Severn Beach (2 female, 1 male).

29th December
An increasingly windy day. An afternoon high tide visit to New Passage produced 18 Shelduck, 200+ Wigeon, 50 Dunlin and 130 Lapwing. A flock of 32 Kittiwakes, 150+ Turnstones and 100+ Dunlin were seen from the Severn Beach shore and 2 Blackcaps remained on garden feeders.

28th December
Reports from the Northwick Warth area involved 130 Teal, 10 Skylark, 57 Pied Wagtail, a Grey Wagtail, 30 Linnets and 8 Stock Doves. Fifty Lapwing, 35 Redshank and a Stonechat were reported at Aust Warth. A Raven and a pair of Blackcaps were seen in Severn Beach.

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                                                                                         Blackcaps, Severn Beach 28.12.17

27th December
A Short-eared Owl appeared on Aust Warth at 4.27 pm and single Stonechat, Raven and Kestrel were also present. A female Blackcap was still present on feeders in a Severn Beach garden. Click on the Owl below for 20 seconds of video.

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                                                                                 Short-eared Owl, Aust Warth 27.12.17

26th December
No improvement, just a pair Blackcaps were seen in Severn Beach.

25th December
Two Blackcaps were seen in Severn Beach.

24th December
Two Blackcaps were seen in Severn Beach.

23rd December
A Little Egret, 390 Lapwing, 68 Culrew, 3 Snipe, 350 Wigeon, 10 Gadwall, 9 Tufted Duck, a Grey Wagtail and 45 Pied Wagtails were seen in the Northwick Warth area. Two Short-eared Owls were seen again at dusk on Aust Warth and the pair of Blackcaps remained in a Severn Beach garden.

22nd December
A foggy day. A Little Egret and 2 Stonechats were reported at New Passage. A Merlin and 2 Short-eared Owls were seen at Aust Warth this afternoon. A pair of Blackcaps were feeding in a Severn Beach garden.

21st December
A male Blackcap remained in a Severn Beach garden.

20th December
A male Blackcap was seen on feeders in a Severn Beach garden. Single Short-eared Owl, Peregrine, Kestrel and Raven were seen at Aust Warth late afternoon.

19th December
A morning visit to any icy Northwick Warth area produced an Egyptian Goose, 48 Canada Geese, 570 Wigeon, 250 Teal, 9 Tufted Duck, 9 Shoveler, 8 Gadwall, 30 Coot, 300+ Lapwing, 600 Dunlin, a Snipe, a Little Egret, 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, a Grey Wagtail and a Kestrel. A pair of Blackcaps remained in a Severn Beach garden and nearby 2 Gadwall and a Sparrowhawk were seen at the Orchard Pools. Two Short-eared Owls and 3 Jack Snipe were reported at Aust Warth.

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                                                                                Egyptian Goose, Northwick Warth 19.12.17

18th December
An icy start followed by sunshine. Sightings from Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland included 48 Canada Geese, 20 Shelduck, 300+ Wigeon, 80 Teal, 120 Curlew, 100+ Oystercatchers, 600 Dunlin, a Kestrel, 40 Pied Wagtails, 30 Stock Doves and 3 adult Peregrines hunting together (2 males and a female, one male chased off eventually). A pair of Blackcaps remained in a Severn Beach garden. A Siberian Chiffchaff was reported heard and seen at VOSA Pool/Hoar Gout near Avonmouth Sewage Works on Merebank Road.

17th December
A wet, grey and dismal day. An impressive 650 Wigeon, 120+ Teal, 10 Tufted Duck, 15 Gadwall, 10 Shoveler, 23 Canada Geese, 400 Dunlin, 230 Lapwing and a Raven were seen on Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland.

16th December
A Merlin, Egyptian Goose and Water Rail were seen in the Northwick Warth area. A female Blackcap remained on garden feeders in Severn Beach today.

15th December
A brief visit to New Passage/Northwick Warth produced 400 Dunlin, 450 Lapwing, 135 Teal, 21 Shelduck, 2 Water Pipits, 5 Stock Dove and a flyover Redpoll. A pair of Blackcaps were present in a Severn Beach garden.

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                                                                                 Water Pipit, Northwick Warth 15.12.17

14th December
A female Blackcap was present in a Severn Beach garden.

13th December
A day of rain and wind. No reports were received.

12th December
An icy morning (-3°C). Combined reports from New Passage involved 30 Black-tailed Godwits, 250 Dunlin, a Little Egret, 5 Cormorants, 300+ Wigeon, a Merlin and 2 Stonechats. At least 100 Turnstones, 15 Ringed Plover, 70 Dunlin, 40 Redshank, 70 Oystercatchers and 2 Stonechats were seen at Severn Beach.

11th December
A North West wind coming from the Welsh snowfields produced a significant wind chill. An eye watering visit to New Passage produced just 18 Shelduck, 240+ Wigeon and 500 Dunlin. Two Short-eared Owls, 3 Jack Snipe, 150 Wigeon and a Raven were seen at Aust Warth late afternoon.

10th December
A cold day with sleet and snow. At least 80 Teal and 7 Tufted Duck were seen on Pilning Wetland late afternoon.

9th December
At least 1000 Dunlin, 24 Black-tailed Godwits, 320 Lapwing, 80 Curlew, 18 Shelduck, 10 Tufted Duck, 2 Little Grebes, single Water Rail, Kestrel, Stonechat and Grey Wagtail were reported from the New Passage/Pilning Wetland area. At least 120 Turnstones, 40 Dunlin and 18 Ringed Plover were seen roosting at Severn Beach. A Short-eared Owl was seen again over Aust Warth at dusk.

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                                                                              Turnstones and Dunlin, Severn Beach 10.12.17
                                                      Plenty of birds crammed into the roost at the Shaft beach

8th December
A day with a biting cold North West wind and occasional snow showers. A visit to Pilning Wetland produced 1000+ roosting Dunlin, 180 Lapwing, 2 Black-tailed Godwits, single Knot and Snipe, 10 Tufted Duck, 2 Ravens and 2 Stonechat. Another 2 Stonechat were seen at Severn Beach. A Short-eared Owl and a Kestrel were reported again at Aust Warth.

7th December
A morning visit to Pilning Wetland/Northwick Warth produced 6 Black-tailed Godwits, 1000+ Dunlin, 250 Lapwing, 80 Redshank, a Little Egret, 240 Wigeon, 80+ Teal, 20 Shelduck, 12 Tufted Duck, a Pochard, 60 Stock Doves and 2 Ravens.

6th December
Combined reports from the Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland area involved 6 Grey Plover, 30 Black-tailed Godwits, 2 Knot, 250 Lapwing, 1200+ Dunlin, 160 Oystercatchers, 75 Curlew, 2 Little Egrets, a Water Rail, 29 Canada Geese, 250+ Wigeon, 18 Shelduck, 90+ Teal, 9 Tufted Duck, 60 Stock Doves, 15 Pied Wagtails, single Grey Wagtail and Raven. Another 9 Shelduck, 25 Turnstones, 16 Ringed Plover, 2 Stonechats and a Rock Pipit were seen at Severn Beach. An early morning high tide visit to Aust Warth produced just 3 Shelduck, 5 Snipe, 2 Ravens and a Kestrel.

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                                                                                         Knot, Pilning Wetland 6.12.17

5th December
A grey and gloomy day. A morning visit to the Northwick Warth area produced an adult Mediterranean Gull, 3 Grey Plover, 250 Lapwing, 37 Black-tailed Godwits, a Knot, 1500 Dunlin, 20 Turnstones, 3 Ringed Plover, 90 Curlew, a Snipe, 2 Little Egrets, 51 Canada Geese, 250+ Wigeon, 7 Shelduck, 10 Shoveler, 6 Gadwall, 8 Tufted Duck, a Pochard and a male Merlin.

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                                                                               Mediterranean Gull, Pilning Wetland 5.12.17

4th December
A low tide visit to Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland this morning produced just 2 Black-tailed Godwits, 1200+ Dunlin, 186 Lapwing, a Snipe, 2 Little Egrets, 30 Canada Geese, 250+ Wigeon, 90 Teal, 7 Tufted Duck, a Pochard, a Peregrine, 32 Pied Wagtails, a Kingfisher and at least 2 Water Pipits. A Short-eared Owl was seen again over Aust Warth at dusk.

3rd December
Reports from Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland included 176 Black-tailed Godwits, 3 Knot, 1150 Dunlin, 19 Ringed Plover, a Little Egret, 10 Tufted Duck, a Water Rail and 2 Water Pipits. A Short-eared Owl, 26 Shelduck, 17 Curlew, 25 Redshank, 2 Kestrels and a Stonechat were seen at Aust Warth.

2nd December
Combined reports from the Northwick Warth area involved a Great Crested Grebe, 180 Black-tailed Godwits, 3 Knot, 22 Ringed Plover, 60 Curlew, 75 Stock Doves, single Water Rail, Peregrine and Stonechat.

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                                                                                     Stock Doves, Northwick Warth 1.12.17

1st December
A sunny day with a biting cold North wind. Reports from the Northwick Warth/Pilning Wetland area included 144 Black-tailed Godwits, 1000+ Dunlin, 21 Lapwing, 10 Ringed Plover, 90+ Oystercatchers, 5 Little Egrets, 27 Canada Geese, 20 Shoveler, 8 Gadwall, 6 Tufted Duck, 18 Shelduck, 200+ Wigeon, 100+ Teal, 7 Fieldfare, an impressive 54 Stock Doves, single Raven and Merlin. Click on the Stock Dove image above for a short Youtube video.