FRIDAY 22 JANUARY
It rained all day, resulting in localised flooding. As such, I managed just one small bit of birding today - in Oxfordshire - securing my first TUNDRA BEAN GEESE of the year.
ASTON AREA, WSW OF WITNEY (OXFORDSHIRE)
A small party of 7 TUNDRA BEAN GEESE were discovered south of Alton yesterday afternoon and at 1130 hours today were still showing well when Justin Taylor, Terry Tossell and I visited. They were in a field just north of the Buckland road and the Great Brook at approximately SP 338 025 (accessed by heading south from Chimney Road in Aston village - see map adjacent). Parking is very difficult in these narrow lanes but fortunately traffic is slight. Adam Hartley obtained the two images above.
Tundra Bean Goose is a rare visitor to Oxfordshire with only a handful of records listed by John Brucker prior to 1970 and just five records between 1979 and 1989 -
1-3) An adult 'Bean Goose' of unknown origin with Canada Geese at Stanton Harcourt GP on 25 February 1979, with further birds of unknown provenance on the River Thames at Northmoor in December 1980 and at Farmoor Reservoirs on 17 April 1983;
4) A party of 13 Tundra Beans was on water meadows near Little Wittenham from 24-31 December 1987 before flying over Farmoor Reservoirs on 2 January 1988;
5) Three Tundra Beans appeared at Warborough on 4 November 1989.