I made an effort to record all bird species seen or heard whilst out today. Over two visits I managed to record 52 species, which I think is pretty good. Although, I know there have been a few more around recently that I just couldn't find today. Despite the obvious good variety of species recorded through the various habitats of this area, there was nothing particularly rare to the region. The highlight for me was a flock of thirteen Golden Plovers flying south over the Upper Cherwell Valley. No major rarity but a hard bird to record here. There was also two Stonechats in the valley, but these were the only notable species.
A few other nice bits for here were Lesser Redpoll, Common Gull, Little Grebe and Herring Gull. The latter was one of four Herring or Yellow-legged Gulls loafing with Lesser Black-backs in the fields up the valley but the only one I could see clearly enough to identify was a Herring Gull. A great big brute of a bird it was too. There was also fresh signs of Otter along the canal again.
Steve Holliday was out this afternoon and reports 600+ Black-headed Gulls, 34 Lesser Black-backed Gulls and at least five Common Gulls (4 ads and 1 2nd winter) prior to 4pm, but they wouldn't settle and most left. Steve also had two Siskins over south amongst some of the more regular inhabitants.
I was back again for the gull roost a bit later, but had a similar situation to Steve with no gulls settling. They would gather up in the sky above the reservoir but would then just drift off north. One group did eventually stay but by that time it was too dark to go through them properly. Of note there were no large gulls at all by this point.
This is no Farmoor, Otmoor or Port Meadow. This is Grimsbury. It's Grim up north!
There is a running total year list in the link above.
Please send in your bird sightings to the B.O.S. and/or to me directly for inclusion on the blog. If you have some photos you would like to contribute please let me know (contact via the comments box on the right if you do not have my email already). Thank you.