Total Number of Species Recorded in 2011

2010 saw a total of 196 species recorded in Bedfordshire. Of this total, LGRE recorded 183, closely followed by Jim Gurney and Steve Blain on 181, Lol Carman on 180, Martin Palmer on 179 and Bob Chalkley on 177.

In 2011, a total of 452 species was recorded in Britain and Ireland of which I recorded just 69% (312); Bedfordshire recorded 204 species (of which I saw 94% at 191), Hertfordshire 192 (of which I saw 88.5% at 170) and Buckinghamshire 192 (of which I recorded just 86% at 165)

In 2012, I came fourth (on 168), following Steve Blain (177), Jim Gurney (174) and Martin Plamer (171).

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Biggleswade Common 27/8

A very enjoyable 'chatfest' on Biggleswade Common this lunchtime comprised:

1 female-type Redstart in a hedge about 300m east of Furzenhall Farm.

1 Whinchat in the last remaining 'stand' of unmown vegetation, at
right-angles to the bridleway south of Furzenhall Farm.

1 Wheatear in the horse paddocks behind the stables.

All the best,

Tony Plosz

Late news for Sunday

A couple of interesting bits seen yesterday (26th):

Three Sandwich Terns (inc one juv) over fields near Stratton Park,
Biggleswade, along with a Curlew, per Graham and Carla Goodall.

Male Redstart by footpath near the Roundhouse on Brogborough Hill, per
Neil Wright.

Biggleswade Common - Bank Holiday Monday

Furzenhall farm area of the common is fast declining under the tractor-mower but had up to three very flighty Whinchat around 1.30 this afternoon.

GLE - 2 juvenile Ruff and 115 LBBGull of note at 2.15

Robin Edwards

Bank Holiday Monday morning

Another look in Bedfordshire's premier wader spot joined by Jim R at Gypsy Lane East. Started slowly with visibility low. On arrival there were still 3 Green sands and 2 more fly over Golden Plover to add to the 9 recorded yesterday. Wigeon had increased over night from 2 to 7.
Best bird was a single Ruff (c8.30am) that thought about landing but carried on North.
Other birds included 2 adult Common Terns and a Common Sand on GLW.

Jim then called me half an hour later to say 4 more Ruff had landed in GLE- looks like an excellent year in Beds for the species.

Matt & Jim

26 August

26 August: juvenile BLACK TERN at Derek White's Pit and 2 juvenile RUFF still at GLE, Broom

Full morning's count at Broom - 25 August

One of the most memorable counts ever, with many highlights. The best of which were the 5 Whimbrel over west, see by Barry Nightingale minutes later, this was a WeBS 1st! Also 2 Ruff and a steady passage of at least 13 Ringed Plover- the true number could have been over 20. An early flock of 9 Golden Plover was also a notable record.

Barnacle Goose 1
Black Tern 1 - seen by SCB only
Black-headed Gull 39
Canada Goose 1
Common Gull 1
Common Sandpiper 2
Common Tern 5
Coot 222
Gadwall 9
Golden Plover 9
Great Crested Grebe 23
Green Sandpiper 4
Grey Heron 7
Greylag Goose 498
Greylag Goose (domestic) 1
Kingfisher 1
Lapwing 121
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1
Little Egret 3
Little Grebe 33
Mallard 255
Mallard (domestic) 2
Moorhen 15
Mute Swan 33
Pochard 8
Ringed Plover 13
Ruff 2 - found by Stu Warren
Shoveler 17
Snipe 1
Teal 28
Tufted Duck 68
Whimbrel 5
Wigeon 2

Total number of species: 33
Individuals: 1431

Matt Burgess

WHIMBRELS seen at Southill Lake too

25/8: At Southill Lake this morning 5 WHIMBRELS through, heading west just after 09.20, so obviously the same as those over GLE (per SCB). Also at Southill 24 Mallards, 7 Common Terns, 29 Tufted Ducks, 5 Pochards, 86 Coots, the pair of Egyptian Geese (but no sign of any young, so presumably predated), 2 Mute Swans with a well grown youngster,7 Grt C Grebes plus 4 well grown young and just to add some spice, 5 Muscovy Ducks.

At Stewartby L at 10.45 had minimum of 8 BLACK TERNS, but in some complete sweeps of the lake there were none. Individual sweeps went from none, 3, 5 and 8.

Barry Nightingale

25 August - an eventful day

8 BLACK TERNS at Stewartby Lake (Peter Smith)
BLACK-TAILED GODWIT at Myers Farm Reservoir, Potton (DO-M)
5 WHIMBREL through GLE, Broom GP, at 0920 hours, plus 17 Ringed Plover, BLACK TERN, 2 RUFF, 9 Golden Plover N (Steve Blain)

Friday, 23 August 2013

An impressive flock of RUFF

Another very warm day with temperatures reaching 25 degrees C during the afternoon. The rain left off whilst the wind gradually freshened up from the SSE - premier conditions for rare and scarce birds. With large numbers of waders departing inland from the Wash, expectations were once again high......
The highlight at TRING RESERVOIRS today was the finding of two different GARGANEYS - one on Wilstone and another on Startop's End Reservoir. The latter was showing very well at times, Francis Buckle obtaining the first three images below and me the rest. It did keep to the centre with Mallard for some time, taking matter from the flotsam floating on the surface of the water.
Other wildfowl present included 3 Common Teal, the eclipse drake Red-crested Pochard and 91 Greylag Geese, whilst both juvenile BLACK-TAILED GODWITS were still showing very well on the mud in the SW corner (see pix). Up to 45 Black-headed Gulls were on the mud, as well as 7 Common Terns, whilst 2 COMMON KINGFISHERS, 3 Grey Wagtails and 7 SPOTTED FLYCATCHERS were also seen. Mike Collard and the ringers trapped a juvenile of the latter, as well as several juvenile Western Reed Warblers, but little else.
COLLEGE LAKE BBOWT just held the continuing juvenile RUFF.
Following an email from Steve Blain, I decided to head up north to BEDFORDSHIRE and BROOM GP. The second I set my 'scope up overlooking GYPSY LANE EAST PITS at 1650 hours, I realised there had been a big fall - no less than 31 RUFF were feeding in a close-knit mass on the close islands and emergent vegetation. This was by far the largest flock of Ruff I had ever encountered in the county and all were juveniles - a fact boding well for the rest of the autumn. I set about photographing the flock but it was difficult, especially as they spread out in amongst the Lapwings. I contacted Richard Bashford, MJP, Peter Smith and RBA to disseminate the news and in the hour that followed, Steve Blain, Robin Edwards, Roy Dunham, Stuart Warren and Jim Gurney turned up to savour the delights.

 Although Steve's 2 Dunlin and Ringed Plovers had relocated to neighbouring Peacock's Lake, the COMMON GREENSHANK was still present (my first of the year), 6 Green Sandpipers and a Common Sandpiper. The Shoveler offspring were still present as well as 2 juvenile Common Shelduck and a juvenile WHINCHAT was in vegetation in front of the pools. An adult MEDITERRANEAN GULL was also a pleasant surprise.

Distant Greenshank

Obscured Common Sandpiper

Lots of Ruff

and adult Mediterranean Gull in flight

 I finished the day off with a visit to THE LODGE, SANDY, where in tall isolated pines near the fort I was very pleased to find a family party of 4 HOBBIES and 2 very vocal COMMON RAVENS; Goldcrest and Great Spotted Woodpecker were added too.

Monday, 19 August 2013


Three WHINCHATS around Furzenhall Farm, Biggleswade Common this
morning. One on the paddocks (TL195461), and two in the large fallow
field to the east (TL197464 - which unfortunately is now beginning to
be cut) (per Steve Blain)

Monday, 12 August 2013