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.

Friday, 29 January 2010

RING-BILLED GULL and NORTHERN GREY SHRIKE added in freezing northerly winds

Steve Arlow took the Westcliffe Ring-billed Gull images above and Adam Hartley those of today's Northern Grey Shrike and Portmeadow Red Knot in Oxfordshire


I had limited time today so target birding was the order. Just as well in some respects, as the northerly wind was bitingly cold. Although the temperature reached 6 degrees C, it felt more like minus 3. It was mainly dry and clear, with the odd wintry shower.


Timed my visit to coincide with high tide and at midday was very pleased to see an old faithful - the adult winter RING-BILLED GULL which I now believe is back for its 11th winter. The bird was showing fabulously well, down to 20 yards on the groynes, and was in fine fettle, very easily picked out from an assortment of Common Gulls by its thicker yellow bill with strong black band, larger size and structure, paler grey mantle and striking pale, pearl-coloured eye. It also lacked the prominent white primary windows of Common Gull (being largely uniform black on the outer feathers) and had much paler leg colour.

Wembley birder John Fordham was delighted, as it was a new bird for him. I was delighted too - it representing my 156th species of 2010. However, 'Rossi' seemed relatively uninterested in my prestige Orange & Lemon Chequers but they were snapped up by the flock of 37 Turnstones on the ramp !

As usual, the bird was favouring the beach and groynes 50 yards west of the Rossi's Ice Cream Parlour and restaurant on the esplanade. Three adult MEDITERRANEAN GULLS were also present and showing well, one bird already acquiring much of its summer hood.

Just offshore, a BLACK-THROATED DIVER was showing well.

Parking on the esplanade costs 80p per hour.

Driving back, a LITTLE EGRET was standing by a small pool on the south side of the A12, just west of the M25 junction.


At approximately SU 582 988, north of the B4015 and half a mile west of Chislehampton village, a NORTHERN GREY SHRIKE was favouring a line of Hawthorns and hedgerow for a second day. From 1445-1515 hours, the bird was showing well in the afternoon sunshine at 80 yards range from the road. I sat and joined Adam Hartley in the freezing wind and he both videoed and photographed the bird (see his images above). At one stage, the bird dropped down on to the ground and reappeared with a Bank Vole (Clethrionomys glareolus) in its beak, which it then carried 30 yards along the hedgerow and after several pecks, impaled it on a branch. It then started to eat it.


My last port of call was Adam Hartley's local patch which was in full winter flood. There were large numbers of birds present, including 560 Wigeon, 220 Teal and 280 Greylag Geese, as well as 3,000 or more Black-headed Gulls, 450 Lesser Black-backed Gulls and smaller numbers of Common, Herring and Great Black-backed Gulls (28).

Most noteworthy were a single Great Crested Grebe, 3 PINTAIL (two drakes), 8 Coot, 200 Lapwing, 3 European Golden Plover, a single Common Redshank and best of all - 4 RED KNOTS (present for their second day).

Small birds were represented by 5 Meadow Pipits and 12 Pied Wagtails

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