Book now for Autumn 2016 Trips

These are the trips I will be running this autumn. They are open to all and are chosen to showcase the best of the season. Please do book up early to get your place.

To make a booking, please e-mail dominic@birdwords.co.uk. For more information on each trip, click under its entry in Events.

DAY TRIPS
10.30am-4.00pm unless stated otherwise. £15 per person per day. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited.

Friday 7th October – Pulborough Brooks, West Sussex
Great favourite, for migrants and wildfowl

Tuesday 11th October – Adur Estuary, Shoreham, West Sussex
Good variety of habitats, birds to match

Thursday 20th October – West Wittering, West Sussex
Big wader variety, lots of tame Brent Geese

Friday 11th November – Hook with Warsash, Hampshire
For waders close up

Friday 25th November – Chidham and Cobnor, West Sussex
Great waterbird site, good for Merlin

Thursday 1st December – The Burgh, West Sussex
Famous for raptors and owls

Friday 9th December – Titchfield Haven, Hampshire
Birding in comfort for Avocets, waders, Marsh Harrier

Tuesday 13th December – Wisley and Papercourt, Surrey
Come for half a day (£7.50) or the full one. Good Christmas shopping and birding

SPECIAL TEN-PERSON TRIPS
Special trips for small groups only. £25 per person.
10.30am-4.00pm. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places very limited.

Tuesday 27th September – Keyhaven and Pennington Marshes, Hampshire
Expect 70-80 species in migrant hotspot

Thursday 3rd November – East Meon, West Sussex
For winter raptors, our first visit at this season

Tuesday 15th November – Thorney Island, West Sussex
Long healthy walk for sensational bird variety

WEDNESDAY MORNINGS IN DORSET AND HAMPSHIRE
£8 per person per trip. Open to all. Please book. 10.00am-12.00pm.

28th September – Hengistbury Head
5th October – Upton Country Park, Poole
12th October – Longham Lakes, Ferndown, Dorset
19th October – Morden Bog, near Wareham
2nd November – Middlebere
9th November – Crichel Lake, near Wimborne
16th November – Lodmoor
23rd November – Stanpit Marsh, Christchurch
30th November – Durlston Country Park, Swanage
7th December – Poole Park and Baiter

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Birding in Early Spring 2016

The days are already lengthening, the birds are singing more each day, so why not come along on a field trip in the next few weeks. These trips are open to all, but please e-mail dominic@birdwords.co.uk to make a booking. For more information on each trip, click under its entry in Events.

DAY TRIPS
10.30am-4.00pm unless stated otherwise. £15 per person per day. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited. Meet on site.


Friday 11th March – Pulborough Brooks, West Sussex
Friday 18th March – Climping Beach, West Sussex
Tuesday 22nd March – Fleet Pond and Greywell

SPECIAL TEN-PERSON TRIPS
Special trips for small groups only. £25 per person.
10.30am-4.00pm. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited. Meet on site.


Thursday 3rd March – Chidham and Cobnor, West Sussex

WEDNESDAY MORNINGS IN DORSET AND HAMPSHIRE
£8 per person per trip. Open to all. Please book. Meet on site.
10.00am-12.00pm.

2nd March – Hengistbury Head
9th March – Maiden Newton, Dorset
16th March – Middlebere, Wareham

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Merry Christmas, everybody

And here’s to a bird-filled New Year.

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Book Now for Autumn Trips

The summer seems to have flown by. Since my last post my wife has a new job (curate), we have moved house, we have been camping and it has been the school holidays. In September, I have to admit that getting back to taking people on field trips will seem tranquil and relaxing. I do hope you can join some. The trips are open to all, but please e-mail dominic@birdwords.co.uk to make a booking. For more information on each trip, click under its entry in Events.

DAY TRIPS

10.30am-4.00pm unless stated otherwise. £15 per person per day. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited.

Friday 25th September – Pagham Harbour, West Sussex
Thursday 8th October – Hook with Warsash, Hampshire
Friday 16th October – West Wittering, West Sussex
 Thursday 5th November – Pulborough Brooks, West Sussex
Tuesday 17th November – Fleet Pond and Moor Green Lakes
 Friday 27th November – Hayling Island, Hampshire
Tuesday 8th December – Burton Mill Pond, West Sussex
Wednesday 16th December – Wisley and Papercourt, Surrey

 

SPECIAL TEN-PERSON TRIPS

Special trips for small groups only. £25 per person.

10.30am-4.00pm. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited.

Friday 18th September – Keyhaven and Pennington Marshes, Hampshire
Tuesday 20th October – Thorney Island, West Sussex
 Tuesday 10th November – New Forest Finch Safari
Friday 4th December – Gulls Galore (Weymouth, Dorset)

 

WEDNESDAY MORNINGS IN DORSET AND HAMPSHIRE

£8 per person per trip. Open to all. Please book.

10.00am-12.00pm. 

23rd September – Lytchett Bay, Upton, Poole
30th September – Hengistbury Head
7th October – Lodmoor
14th October – Longham Lakes, Ferndown, Dorset
21st October – Upton Country Park
4th November – Middlebere, Wareham
11th November – Maiden Castle, Dorchester
18th November – Blashford Lakes, Ringwood
25th November – Studland
2nd December – Poole Park and Baiter

 

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Estonia

Wood Cow-Wheat (Melampyrum melanosum)

Wood Cow-Wheat (Melampyrum melanosum), Laelatu wooded meadows, Estonia, 12/6/15 (Dominic Couzens)

I have just been fortunate enough to visit Estonia for a few days. The flowers, as well as the birds, mammals, butterflies and dragonflies, were amazing. More details to follow in due course.

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Book Now for Summer Trips

My remaining programme of summer trips is outlined below. The trips are open to all, but please e-mail dominic@birdwords.co.uk to make a booking. For more information on each trip, click under its entry in Events.

DAY TRIPS
10.30am-4.00pm unless stated otherwise. £15 per person per day. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited.

Tuesday 19th May – New Forest off the Beaten Track
Redstart, Wood Warbler, Firecrest, Hawfinch maybe.
Thursday 4th June – Marsh Common, Stockbridge
Warblers abound here, Water Vole.
Friday 19th June – Selborne, Hampshire FULL
Historical setting, variety of normal birds, butterflies.
Friday 10th July – London Wetland Centre (+ entrance fee).
If we get group rate (12+ people) entrance fee is £9.85 (no gift aid), concessions £7.34 (no gift aid), WWT members free entry.
Ducklings, chicks, coffee!

SPECIAL TEN-PERSON TRIPS
Special trips for small groups only. £25 per person.
10.30am-4.00pm. Bring packed lunch. Book early – places limited.

Thursday 21st May – Cheesefoot Head and Old Winchester Hill, Hampshire FULL
Corn Bunting, Yellowhammer, Lesser Whitethroat.
Tuesday 14th July – “Raptor Rapture”, New Forest
Hoping for Honey Buzzard, Goshawk, Hobby.

WEDNESDAY MORNINGS IN DORSET AND HAMPSHIRE
£8 per person per trip (price rise). Open to all. Please book.
10.00am-12.00pm.

20th May – Dancing Ledge
Chance of Puffin, Linnets, Whitethroats.
3rd June – Tarrant Rushton Airfield
Corn Bunting, other downland stuff.
24th June – Blashford Lakes, Ringwood
Loads of warbers, waders.
1st July – Middlebere, Wareham
Waders, Dartford Warbler
8th July – Stanpit Marsh, Christchurch
Returning waders such as Whimbrel.

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New Factsheets

I have been working on some new factsheets for this website. Do take a tour around them. Did you know that Scops Owls often migrate in families and that Red-legged Partridges double-clutch? If not, have a look at free bird factsheets.

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Wildlife and Travel Blog

THE PERFECT SWARM
Bat-catching on an English autumn night

There are many joys to mammal-watching, but one is undoubtedly a tendency to do peculiar things. Take visiting a cave on a September dusk and placing long nets outside it, and then waiting, chatting in the gloom in the hope that furry animals with wings will fly into the mesh. Take sitting down with bat in gloved hand, extracting measurements by torchlight, fiddling with calipers and fine spring scales, checking the bats’ teeth and private parts, in a manner suggesting that this is normal life. It isn’t normal, but it is classic mammal-watching. While the world sleeps, we have adventures. Continue reading

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Garden Surprise

17 May 2014
There are many advantages of playing football in the garden with your children. However, one that I had never thought of was to look up and see a Common Crane circling over to the north – but that’s what happened today. Sorry, the shots aren’t up to much, but it was quite a moment.

Common Crane, Ferndown, 17 May 2014 (Dominic Couzens)

A similar reward for good domestication happened a few years ago. On this occasion I was putting the bins out and happened to hear a Pied Flycatcher in the back garden! That was the first record of several that have turned up here in August.

Meanwhile, another shot of today’s visitor. Incidentally, we also had a Slow Worm on the lawn.

 

Common Crane, Ferndown 17 May 2014 (Dominic Couzens)

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A Great Summer of Birding

Why don’t you join me on one or two of these terrific field trips this summer? They are open to all, but places go quickly. The quickest way to reserve a place is to e-mail me on dominic@birdwords.co.uk. You will need to make your way to the meeting place (see Events)

DAY TRIPS (10.30am-4pm) £15 per person (please pre-book)

Thursday 8th May – Pulborough Brooks, West Sussex

Thursday 15th May – Farlington Marshes, Hampshire

Friday 23rd May – Titchfield Haven, Hampshire

Friday 13th June – Devil’s Punchbowl and Thursley Common, Surrey
You can pay £7.50 for each section or come to both.

Friday 27th June – New Forest off the Beaten Track

Tuesday 8th July – Medmerry, West Sussex

Friday 18th July – Selborne, Hampshire

SMALL GROUP TRIPS (10 or less), 10.30am-4pm, £25 per person, please pre-book

Thursday 5th June – Stodmarsh, near Canterbury

Tuesday 17th June – Martin Down and Garston Wood, Wiltshire/Dorset

Thursday 3rd JulyLangford Lakes, Wiltshire

Tuesday 22nd July – Raptor Rapture, New Forest

SHORT (2 HOUR, 10.00am-12.00pm) WEDNESDAY MORNING SESSIONS IN DORSET/HAMPSHIRE
£7 per person per session. Please pre-book if possible (but spaces likely)

7th May –  Longham Lakes, Ferndown, Dorset
14th May –  Radipole Lake, Weymouth
21st May –  Swineham, Wareham
4th June – Mark  Ash Wood, New Forest
11th June – Badbury Rings
18th June – Blashford  Lakes, Ringwood
25th June – Tarrant  Rushton Airfield (north of Wimborne)
2nd July – Lodmoor,  Weymouth
9th July – Arne
16th July – Blandford (for Otters, Kingfishers and lunch!)

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