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.

Saturday 29 September 2018

29th Sep 2018

I was out this morning and there wasn't a great amount going on, but there was a few bits of minor interest. From when I arrived to when I left there was a steady trickle of Meadow Pipits going over and there was also a group of five Siskins and several Skylark (our first of the autumn) making their way south.

There was a Blackcap in the scrub south of the wood and at least two Chiffchaff in the wood - one singing. I also managed to hear a Marsh Tit a few times but couldn't see it. There were Otter footprints under the railway bridge at the back of the wood, but there's not been much spraint there since the river has been in flood.

Friday 28 September 2018

28th Sep 2018: Ring-necked Parakeet

A Ring-necked Parakeet flew over while John was out this morning and flew towards Tesco. It could be the same bird that has recently been seen in the Sinclair Avenue area. There was also a Golden Plover over, a Blackcap, two Chiffchaffs, a Swallow and several Siskins through south.

Tuesday 25 September 2018

25th Sep 2018

Another quiet day but John did have a Pheasant, two Jays, five Swallows, five Tufted Ducks and a Marsh Tit in the morning and a group of c.50 Swallows over in the evening (which I possibly also had over my house). He may have also heard a Green Sandpiper but wasn't entirely sure.

Sunday 23 September 2018

23rd Sep 2018

A juvenile Ringed Plover was a good find for John this morning but it didn't stay very long. Colin was around for a couple of hours in both the morning and the evening today but didn't see much more of note.

Saturday 22 September 2018

22nd Sep 2018: Arctic Tern

John saw a very good Meadow Pipit passage this morning with nearly 250 over in 25 mins. Unfortunately, the phalarope had gone by this morning but an Arctic Tern dropped in while he was still there.

Photos courtesy and copyright of JFT

Friday 21 September 2018

21st Sep 2018: Grey Phalarope!

Very little reward for another very early start for me. Maybe I was too early as not too much later John had a steady overhead passage of c.40 House Martins, 8 swallows and c.30 House Martins. He also had more hirundines going over at lunch time. 

The afternoon got a little exciting as Grey Phalaropes were being reported at various sites through the day with more and more turning up at sites around us, including five at three sites in Warwickshire. It got to to 17:10 and I knew John would be at the reservoir looking and at 17:19 I received a call from him to give me the anticipated news... There was also a Polish ringed Black-headed Gull around when he got there and four/five Yellow-legged Gulls in the pre-roost gathering and a Hobby and six Golden Plover over.

Photos courtesy and copyright of JFT
Also more photos and a video on his blog here

Thursday 20 September 2018

20th Sep 2018

I started out early again this morning but left with little to report. Not long after I had gone, John reported a Green Sandpiper flying low over to the north that appeared to land near the canal.

In the evening John had a 2CY Yellow-legged Gull.

Wednesday 19 September 2018

19th Sep 2018

I was out early this morning and picked up a few Meadow Pipits over but not a lot else. A Shoveler appeared and did a few circuits of the reservoir as John and Dan arrived but didn't come down to the water at all. Another Hobby went over and there was a steady trickle of Meadow Pipits.

In the evening John had another gull that appeared to be a Caspian hybrid.

Photos courtesy and copyright of JFT

Tuesday 18 September 2018

18th Sep 2018

All news from John again today (and Dan in the evening). In the morning there was a White Wagtail around and two Snipe through. In the evening a Hobby made two or three very close passes, trying to catch a Pied Wagtail. 

Photos courtesy and copyright of JFT

Monday 17 September 2018

17th Sep 2018

This morning John had a Common Sandpiper, Coot and four Tufted Ducks.

Thursday 13 September 2018

13th Sep 2018

John had a Mistle Thrush this morning, also a juv Yellow Wagtail, Common Sandpiper, Marsh Tit, Little Grebe, Whitethroat, Blackcap and a trickle of Meadow Pipits over.

Wednesday 12 September 2018

12th Sep 2018

News from Colin and John this morning. Common sand still present and a Great Crested Grebe, the  
first of the autumn. There was also a Yellow Wagtail, five Swallows over and a flock of 23 Meadow Pipits over. 

In the evening we had a Green Sandpiper fly over somewhere near the river (heard but not seen). 

Tuesday 11 September 2018

11th Sep 2018

This evening John had a Hobby over south, a Common Sandpiper and a Yellow-legged Gull.

Monday 10 September 2018

10th Sep 2018

Fairly quiet this morning on John's visit with Common Sandpiper, Yellow Wagtail over, a Whitethroat, c.4 Blackcap and c.5 Chiffchaff.

Sunday 9 September 2018

9th Sep 2018

John was out this morning and had a Wigeon, Spotted Flycatcher, flyover Yellow Wagtail and Marsh Tit. 

Friday 7 September 2018

7th Sep 2018

News from Colin and John today.

Chilly but sunny this morning at Grimsbury from 0630-0915 - a nice mix of summer and autumn passage birds and a few residents. Top bird of the morning was a calling Nuthatch in the middle of the wood – only my second ever on the patch.
Also – 1x Dunlin, 3 flyover Siskins, 2 Meadow Pipits in the cattle field. Around 30 House Martins and 3-4 Swallows. Kingfisher on the sailing club pontoons at sunrise, also heard later along the river.
Minimum of least 24 Pied Wagtails at one time around the fringes of the reservoir and I probably missed a few more.
Young male Kestrel watching for voles from the dinghy mast-tops in the sailing club compound.
On the Borrow Pit: 11 Little Grebes, 15 Coots (inc juveniles), 2M1F Tufted Duck.

The Dunlin was still there in the evening and a Little Egret over south, a Marsh Tit and Kingfisher. 

Photos courtesy and copyright of Dave Fuller

Wednesday 5 September 2018

5th Sep 2018

John and I were out this morning. It was rather quiet, but John did see a Willow Warbler and we had a steady trickle of migrants over head, including at least ten Meadow Pipits, a Yellow Wagtail, a few each of Sand and House Martin and c.20 Swallows. I also later had four Yellow Wagtails in the cattle field.

Monday 3 September 2018

3rd Sep 2018: Caspian Gull?

John was out in the morning and at lunchtime and he and Colin were out in the evening today. In the morning there was a Teal, four Yellow Wagtails over and a Willow Warbler. At lunchtime John got on to a Wood Warbler in the tit flock on the south-eastern corner of the woodland, but unfortunately it was only seen very briefly. There was also a Black Swan and a Spotted Flycatcher.

In the evening there was a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull and what looked like a juvenile ‘Caspian Gull’. Fortunately, it was ringed (XEHA) so John could get a bit more detail on where it was from. It turns out it was ringed in a mixed colony in Germany at Gräbendorfer See. However, it turns out this is a mixed colony where it is not possible to identify the chicks with any certainty. The colony is mostly Caspian or Herring Gulls with some Yellow-legged Gulls and Lesser Black-backed Gulls and the existence of many hybrids (!).

Ian had a look at John's photos and added these notes:
I had a similar bird from the same colony at Didcot over the weekend - X544. Mine was a good cach in all respects except for the heavily marked scaps and the latters very advanced moult. I would guess mine might have had Yellow-legged Gull in its parentage. I think yours looks good apart from the heavily barred greater coverts and scaps so I would guess it's also of mixed parentage. Mixed parentage birds are becoming quite regular visitors to Didcot tip but I've had four pure Caspians in the last two weeks: a juv, 2 1st-s/2nd-w and an adult.

Photos courtesy and copyright of JFT