My UK Year List - 2014

  • 117-118) GREAT WHITE EGRET and LONG-TAILED DUCKS at Mary's Lake, Earls Barton GP, 9 January
  • 116) Barnacle Goose, Emberton Park, 9 January
  • 114-115) SMEW and Cetti's Warbler at Great Hardmead Lake, Amwell, 7 January
  • 113) Reed Bunting, Tyttenhanger, 7 January
  • 112) Tree Sparrow (32 birds), Tyttenhanger, 7 January
  • 111) Sparrowhawk, West Hyde, 7 January
  • 110) Mandarin Duck, Burnham Beeches NNR, 7 January
  • 100-109) Curlew, Knot, Bar-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Oystercatcher, Grey Plover, Sanderling, Common Shelduck, Kittiwake and Mediterranean Gull at Church Norton, 6 January
  • 99) RUDDY SHELDUCK, Sidlesham Ferry, 6 January
  • 96-98) Purple Sandpiper, Turnstone and Rock Pipit in Shoreham Harbour
  • 95) Red-breasted Merganser, Widewater, 6 January
  • 94) GREY PHALAROPE, Hove Lagoon, 6 January
  • 93) Grey Partridge, Broom, 5 January
  • 92) Goosander, Woburn Lakes, 5 January
  • 91) Skylark, Totternhoe, 5 January
  • 90) Yellowhammer, Totternhoe, 5 January
  • 89) Corn Bunting, Totternhoe, 5 January
  • 88) Water Pipit, Wilstone, 5 January
  • 87) SABINE'S GULL, Weston Turville, 5 January
  • 86) Common Scoter, Brogborough, 4 January
  • 85) GREAT NORTHERN DIVER, Stewartby Lake, 4 January
  • 84) Red-legged Partridge, Hatch, 4 January
  • 83) Common Kestrel, Langford, 4 January
  • 82) GLOSSY IBIS, Frensham, 4 January
  • 81) Goldcrest, Frensham, 4 January
  • 80) Green Sandpiper, Lynsters, 3 January
  • 79) Stock Dove, Lynster's, 3 January
  • 78) Egyptian Goose, Lynsters Farm, 3 January
  • 77) Common Chiffchaff, Stockers Lake
  • 76) SIBERIAN CHIFFCHAFF, Stockers Lake
  • 75) Siskin, Stockers Lake
  • 74) Dunnock, Stockers Lake
  • 73) Ring-necked Parakeet, Stockers Lake
  • 72) Lesser Redpoll, Stockers Lake
  • 71) Coal Tit, Chaffinch House
  • 40-70: Nuthatch, Greylag Goose, Pied Wagtail, Lapwing, Golden Plover, Great Crested Grebe, Cormorant, Common Redshank, Common Snipe, Teal, Wigeon, Shoveler, LITTLE STINT, Black-tailed Godwit, Grey Wagtail, Goldeneye, Meadow Pipit, Greenfinch, Marsh Tit, Dunnock, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Long-tailed Tit, Bullfinch, Jay, Red-crested Pochard, Wren, Collared Dove (all at Tring Reservoirs), Brambling (Ivinghoe), Herring & Great Black-backed Gull, CATTLE EGRET (Briarhill Farm, Calvert) & Green Woodpecker
  • 1-39 all local, Chess River Valley & Shardeloes Estate: 1 January 2014: Chaffinch, Common Starling, Woodpigeon, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Common Magpie, Mute Swan, Mallard, Moorhen, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Rook, Common Buzzard, Canada Goose, Coot, Black-headed Gull, Tufted Duck, Pochard, House Sparrow, Common Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Pheasant, Gadwall, Kingfisher, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Robin, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Little Grebe, Common Gull, Red Kite, Redwing, Fieldfare, Song Thrush, Goldfinch, Mistle Thrush, WOODCOCK, Treecreeper, Greenfinch and Water Rail

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Year Listing in the UK

Lee Evans has been Year-listing in the UK since 1977 and has achieved annual totals of over 300 species ever since. Although he has recorded in excess of 360 species on some nine occasions, his record stands at 386 species - achieved in 1996. Adrian Webb in Year 2000 recorded at least 378 species, making him by far the highest-listing individual to compare with Lee. In terms of Life Listing, Lee has recorded 577 species in Britain and Ireland and 853 species in the wider Western Palearctic region.

Monday, 25 January 2010

An owl and goose fest


A very gloomy day, with ashen skies, low cloud, poor visibility and a cold wind. Temperatures struggled to get above 5 degrees C.


No less than 5 wintering LONG-EARED OWLS were roosting in one ivy-clad tree. Three of us enjoyed fabulous views of two of the birds as they sat out in full view in the scrub and what gorgeous birds these special owls are. One pair bred in the neighbouring wood last summer and I am guessing this party includes the sole surviving youngster. Sadly, Long-eared Owls are susceptible to disturbance, and the location of these five must remain a secret.

A single cronking COMMON RAVEN was also welcome, whilst 3 BULLFINCH and 3 RED KITES were also noted.

Thanks to Paul Anness, I was also finally able to add Red-legged Partridge to my 2010 Bedfordshire List with two coveys of 58 and 20 feeding in the large crop fields either side of the Hexton-Lilley road north of Mortgrove Farm at TL 107 285. Two Common Buzzards were hunting the partridges but were unsuccessful - the birds all running at breakneck speed into the safety of the hedgerow.

......The Latter part of the day was spent in ESSEX


Prime target bird here was the SLAVONIAN GREBE, which was showing impeccably well in the main narrow dyke that runs parallel with the cycleway/footpath, adjacent to the reclaimed landfill hump, about a mile west of the RSPB centre and 350 yards west of the 'Serin Mound'. The bird was incredibly photogenic and represented my 152nd species of the year.

A juvenile GLAUCOUS GULL (with surprisingly white primary tips and the fourth individual in three weeks at the reserve) was roosting with the large number of gulls on the fields west of Aveley Pools, whilst the two TUNDRA BEAN GEESE and a single BARNACLE GOOSE were with 140 Greylag Geese in the grass fields 300 yards north of the 'Serin Mound'.

There was no sign of either Serin or of the Goldfinches, but 55 Linnet were in the vicinity. On the main pools, Common Shelducks were in surprising number.


Arrived mid afternoon in the car park and after a FOUR mile hike east then southeast along the seawall eventually tracked down the geese flock in the grass fields inland of the raised bank. Talk about mobile and restless - a week of being chased around by a concerned farmer protecting his crop has really taken a toll and boy were they wary.

As dusk was approaching, and the light conditions were appalling, I managed to conceal myself on the bank and click-counted a massive 1,706 geese in the flock - including 1,702 Dark-bellied Brent, 2 Pale-bellied Brent, an adult BLACK BRANT and an adult RED-BREASTED GOOSE. There were also 7 adult BEWICK'S SWANS in the fields and a COMMON GREENSHANK flew up noisily from one of the scrapes as I walked back to the car. Three well-earned year-ticks.
Jeff Delve and Steve Arlow obtained the goose images above.

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