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England Gloucestershire

Magpie Pica pica ©Ashley Beolens Website

Gloucestershire, on the English border with Wales, is a many faceted jewel of a County set in the very heart of rural Britain. None of its several towns and cities (Cheltenham, Cirencester, Gloucester, Stroud and Tewkesbury) are so large that the countryside cannot be reached within a couple of miles or so. In Gloucestershire's 1,000 square mile area there are many wildlife-friendly habitats, which include: The bird-rich beautifully scenic grass covered chalk and limestone hills of the peaceful Cotswolds [a high plateau patch-quilted with mature beech woods] in the East. Deep, quiet ravines of ancient woodland in the Wye Valley. The (almost sea level) floodplain of the estuarine Severn Valley where waders breed and migrant wildfowl over-winter. The upland of Cleeve Hill (1,000-foot altitude). The easily accessible wooded, wild hills and valleys of the 35 square miles of working forest that make up the (one-time Royal hunting preserve of the) Forest of Dean in the West.

In this last environment the mixture of mature broad-leaf forest and managed young coniferous sections produce a variety of habitats that include ancient woodlands, open meadows of acid grassland, grass-clumped bogs and broad heathland - a diversity of bird and other wildlife that is an almost guaranteed recipe for good birding.

Top Sites

**Latest Sightings

Sightings

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WebBirder Hot Spots

Ashleworth Ham

Satellite View

On the West bank of River Severn 6 miles north of Gloucester - Bewick's Swan, Bittern, Cormorant, Gadwall, Goldeneye, Mallard, Pintail, Pochard, Shelduck, Shoveler, Teal, Tufted Duck, Wigeon.

Avon Valley

Satellite View

Anywhere along the Avon after Tewkesbury - Bewick's Swan, Coot, Dunlin, Golden Plover, Lapwing, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Moorhen, Mute Swan, Pochard, Redshank, Reed Bunting, Shoveler, Teal, Tufted Duck, Wigeon, Willow Tit.

Aylburton Warth

Satellite View

On the West bank of River Severn 6 miles north of Gloucester - Black headed Gull, Kestrel, Lapwing, Mallard, Meadow Pipit, Raven, Redshank, Skylark, Tree Sparrow.

Bourton Pits

Satellite View

At Bourton-on-the-Water. Canada Goose, Coot, Dipper, Great Crested Grebe, Grey Heron, Grey Wagtail, Little Grebe, Kingfisher, Mallard, Mute Swan, Reed Bunting, Tree Sparrow, Tufted Duck.

Chedworth Woods

Satellite View

South side of River Colne - Barn Owl, Bullfinch, Buzzard, Corn Bunting, Dipper, Goldcrest, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Grey Partridge, Grey Wagtail, Jay, Kestrel, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Mallard, Mandarin Duck, Nuthatch, Pheasant, Red-legged Partridge, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Tree Sparrow, Treecreeper, Woodcock, Yellowhammer.

Cirencester Park

Satellite View

Near Cirencester - Bullfinch, Buzzard, Coal Tit, Goldcrest, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Kestrel, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Long-tailed Tit, Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper, Willow Tit.

Coombe Hill Canal

Satellite View

On the East bank of River Severn 6 miles north of Gloucester - Bewick's Swan, Bittern, Cormorant, Gadwall, Goldeneye, Mallard, Pintail, Pochard, Shelduck, Shoveler, Teal, Tufted Duck, Wigeon.

Cotswold Water Park (Gloucestershire/Wiltshire border)

Website

Satellite View

Canada Goose, Coot, Dipper, Great Crested Grebe, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Grey Heron, Grey Wagtail, Kingfisher, Little Grebe, Mallard, Mute Swan, Red-crested Pochard, Tawny Owl, Tree Sparrow, Tufted Duck.

Dowdeswell Reservoir

Satellite View

Near Cheltenham - Bullfinch, Coot, Goldcrest, Great Crested Grebe, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Grey Heron, Grey Wagtail, Jay, Kestrel, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Grebe, Mallard, Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Pied Wagtail, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper, Willow Tit.

Forest of Dean

Satellite View

(Forest area encircled by towns of Cinderford, Monmouth and Lydney) [Places of birding interest: RSPB Nagshead reserve (OS: 5909); Woorgreen's Lake (near Speech house); Cannop ponds. (OS: 6010); Soudley ponds. (OS: 6611) & New Fancy view] - Blue Tit, Buzzard, Coot, Cormorant, Dipper, Goldcrest, Great Tit, Grey Heron, Grey Wagtail, Hawfinch, Kestrel, Kingfisher, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Grebe, Long-tailed Tit, Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Peregrine, Pied Flycatcher, Raven, Redpoll, Siskin, Sparrowhawk, Stonechat, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper, Willow Tit, Woodcock, Yellowhammer.

Frampton Pools

Satellite View

Disused gravel pits outside Frampton - Barnacle Goose, Canada Goose, Coot, Cormorant, Great Crested Grebe, Grey Heron, Greylag, Kestrel, Kingfisher, Little Grebe, Little Owl, Mandarin Duck, Mute Swan, Nuthatch, Red-legged Partridge, Reed Bunting, Ruddy Duck, Treecreeper, Tufted Duck, White-fronted Goose, Willow Tit.

Hailey Wood

Satellite View

Near Cirencester - Bullfinch, Buzzard, Coal Tit, Goldcrest, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Kestrel, , Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Long-tailed Tit, Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper, Willow Tit.

National Arboretum - Westonbirt

Satellite View

Near Tetbury on A433 - Goldcrest, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Kestrel, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Nuthatch, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper.

Oakley Wood

Website

Satellite View

Near Cirencester - Bullfinch, Buzzard, Coal Tit, Goldcrest, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Kestrel, , Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Long-tailed Tit, Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper, Willow Tit. There has been woodland here since way back in the 16th Century but much of it was replanted with Scots pine. There are now large areas of conifer with some broadleaf trees and scrubland mixed in. Warwickshire Wildlife Trust have longer term plans to restore the wood back to native broadleaf trees.

Oversley Wood

Satellite View

Near Cirencester - Bullfinch, Buzzard, Coal Tit, Goldcrest, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Kestrel, , Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Long-tailed Tit, Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Treecreeper, Willow Tit.

Slimbridge

Webpage

Satellite View

Off Junction 13 or 14 of M5 - [Extensive and World renowned captive collection of Wildfowl] - Chaffinch, Collared Dove, Cormorant, Gadwall, Grey Heron, Kestrel, Kingfisher, Lapwing, Little Owl, Mandarin Duck, Meadow Pipit, Moorhen, Redshank, Reed Bunting, Shelduck, Skylark, Sparrowhawk, Treecreeper.

Symonds Yat

Webpage

Satellite View

On River Wye near Chepstow - Buzzard, Cormorant, Dipper, Grey Wagtail, Herring Gull, Kestrel, Peregrine, Redpoll, Sand Martin, Siskin, Sparrowhawk.

Tidenham Chase

Satellite View

Near Tintern Abbey - Buzzard, Coal Tit, Crossbill, Goldcrest, Kestrel, Nightjar, Redpoll, Sparrowhawk, Stonechat, Tree Pipit, Whinchat, Whitethroat, Willow Tit, Woodcock, Yellowhammer.

Walmore Common

Satellite View

On River Severn near Gloucester - Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Kestrel, Lapwing, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, Redshank, Reed Bunting, Skylark, Sparrowhawk, Stock Dove, Tawny Owl.

Withington Woods

Satellite View

South side of River Colne - Barn Owl, Bullfinch, Buzzard, Corn Bunting, Dipper, Goldcrest, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Grey Partridge, Grey Wagtail, Jay, Kestrel, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Little Owl, Mallard, Mandarin Duck, Nuthatch, Pheasant, Red-legged Partridge, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Tree Sparrow, Treecreeper, Woodcock, Yellowhammer.

Wye Valley

Satellite View

Near Chepstow - Buzzard, Cormorant, Dipper, Grey Wagtail, Herring Gull, Kestrel, Peregrine, Redpoll, Sand Martin, Siskin, Sparrowhawk.

Contributor

County Recorder

Richard Baatsen (Gloucs excluding S Glos/Avon)

1 Prestwick Terrace, Bristol Road, Whitminster, Glos, GL2 7PA

07879 850196

Baatsen@surfbirder.com

Checklist

Checklist

WebBirder Checklist

Fatbirder's very own checklists are now available through WebBirder

Useful Reading

The Birds of Gloucestershire

by Gordon Kirk & John Phillips | Liverpool University Press | 2013 | Hardback | 452 pages - The most comprehensive account of Gloucestershire's birds ever produced…

ISBN: 9781846318085

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Where to Watch Birds in Somerset, Gloucestershire & Wiltshire

by Ken Hall & John Govett 3rd edition Helm ?Where to Watch? series. 2004 ?14.99p
See Fatbirder Review

ISBN: 0713666145

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Useful Information

Cotswold Falconry Centre

Batsford Park, Moreton in Marsh GL56 9QF. Tel: 01386 701043

National Bird of Prey Centre

Newent GL18 1JJ Tel: 01531 820286

Guides & Tour Operators

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

Birding Pal

Information

Local birders willing to show visiting birders around their area…

The Cotswold Birdwatching Company

Guiding

Our day trips are organised to offer the chance to celebrate the area’s amazing wildlife and fantastic scenery. Maybe you have species that you would particularly like to see or would just like a bird-filled day out. Whatever you require, we always try our best to maximise our time in the field. We appreciate that people love to see new species and are delighted to make this happen.

Trip Reports

CloudBirders

Trip Report Repository

CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.

Places to Stay

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

New House Farm

Accommodation

New House Farm is a 64 acre working farm ideally situated between the Cotswolds, the Wye Valley and the Forest of Dean. The property is set in a commanding position on the hillside of a quiet valley with far reaching views towards the Malvern hills.

Organisations

Cheltenham Bird Club

Website

Welcome to the Cheltenham Bird Club website. If you have a passion for birds, natural history, wildlife or the outdoors in general – then Cheltenham Bird Club could help enhance your interests. We are a club of like-minded people who enjoy something of all the above and meet throughout the year to share in our interests. Please take a few minutes to scan through the pages of this website to learn a little more about our club and its many and varied activities. There is much more to Cheltenham Bird Club than purely birdwatching. We are actively engaged in round-the-year conservation work by contributing vital information through bird surveys in our gardens and at locations around Gloucestershire…

Gloucestershire Naturalists Society

Website

The Gloucestershire Naturalists Society (GNS) was formed in 1948 with the aim of promoting an interest in the varied wildlife of the county of Gloucestershire, U.K. At the same time, it assumed the task of recording the county's flora and fauna. To assist in this, the GNS appoints and supports county recorders for all aspects of wildlife - birds, mammals, insects and wildflowers for example…

Gloucestershire Orchard Group

Website

Conserves, promotes and celebrates traditional orchards in Gloucestershire - With such a wealth of fruit and insects available in old orchards, it is only to be expected that there is a wide range of feeding opportunities for birds and mammals. Birds such as woodpeckers (green and great-spotted); nuthatches, treecreepers and tits may be seen on tree trunks and hollow branches. Fieldfares, starlings, redwings, thrushes, blackbirds and jays will be feeding on the fruit (on or off the tree)…

Gloucestershire Ornithological Co-ordinating Committee

The GOCC is the overall co-ordinating body for ornithological activities in the county, and produces the Gloucestershire Bird Report. Contact the current chairman: Mike Smart 143 Cheltenham Road, Gloucester, GL2 0JH - Tel 01452 421131 - email smartmike@btinternet.com

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust

Website

The Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust was formed in 1961 by local people, including Sir Peter Scott, who wanted a better future for the county`s wildlife. A variety of programmes and initiatives have been developed to help achieve the Trust`s aim of caring for the wildlife and wild places of Gloucestershire.

National Birds of Prey Centre

Website

The Aims of The National Birds of Prey Centre are Conservation of all birds of prey through Education, Captive Breeding, Research and Rehabilitation. We are one of the oldest, probably the largest and certainly the best known and respected specialist collection of birds of prey in the world. Housing approximately 300 birds of over 80 species, the Centre leads the world in the number of species bred in captivity. To date 55 species have been bred here, with new species laying eggs each year.

The Barn Owl Centre

Website

Established in 1997, registered as a charity 2003, The Barn Owl Centre is an organisation dedicated to Education, Wildlife Conservation & Bird Welfare. Our centre also allows us to offer - Owl flying & bird of prey experiences, the manufacture of a range of nest boxes and nature photography days…

Reserves

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust Reserves

Website

List of reserves and contacts etc…

Prinknash Abbey Bird park

Website

Satellite View

Not my sort of thing but you can brush up your ID skills I guess - There are also many varieties of geese including Snow Geese, Bar Headed Geese from China, and Red Breasted Geese from Siberia and in the middle distance you will see the first ponds with Ducks and other birds. All the birds and animals in the Park are free and feed out of your hands…

RSPB - Nagshead

Webpage

Satellite View

Nagshead is famous for its breeding pied flycatchers. The nestboxes in which they nest have been monitored continuously since 1948. The wood is also home to hawfinches, buzzards and all three species of British woodpecker…

RSPB - Symonds Yat

Webpage

Satellite View

The peregrine viewing point at Symonds Yat Rock is a joint project run by the RSPB and Forest Enterprise, who own the site. Between April and August, telescopes are set up to give close views of the nesting peregrines. The rock is a spectacular site high above the River Wye…

RSPB Reserve - Highnam Woods

Website

Satellite View

With its carpets of bluebells and primroses, this is an ideal reserve to visit in the spring when the nightingales can be heard…

WWT - Slimbridge

Webpage

Satellite View

Eight million people have visited Slimbridge to get closer to wildlife & wetlands since Sir Peter Scott opened the doors in 1946. Some people come to get close to the birds, other people just love the ambience of this haven by the Severn. The birds keep coming back too - more than 20,000 wild birds dropped by last year, some staying for months before starting out on their great migratory journeys.

Blogs

Birds & Nature in the Forest of Dean & Beyond

BLOG

Bob Philpott - Cotswold Water Park

Blog

This weblog covers sightings in the Cotswold Water Park irrespective of county. It is designed to record all recent sightings within the Cotswold Water Park and aims to increase reports of sightings for this area…

Colin Butters’ Natural History Diary

Blog

This is the Gloucestershire Natural History Diary of Colin Butters and was created in June 2002. From 2009 it will contain all of my natural history sightings including those from out of the county…

Other Links

Anser Birding - Martin McGill

Website

Birding diary, images and travels of Martin McGill, a Gloucestershire based birder and WWT Slimbridge Warden. Also Birding holidays, identification courses and day trips. Trip reports section from all holidays and a gallery…

Barn Owl Centre

Website

The Barn Owl Centre… is based in Gloucestershire, England. Our aims are simply to educate and to help stabilise the Barn Owl population in the wild. The Centre advises and works very closely with a large number of landowners within five counties, these counties are Gloucestershire, South Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire, parts of Oxfordshire and Wiltshire.

Birding South Gloucestershire

Website

The Birds Of South Gloucestershire (TBOSG) was launched in November 2005 with the primary objective of providing a point of reference with easy access to information about rare and scarce birds, both full species and forms, seen in 'S. Glos'. It is by no means authoritative nor exhaustive but it does capture the essence of modern 'birding' in this extremely important region…

Gloster Birder

Website

Gloucestershire is one of the best counties to see many special birds. There are many important sites throughout the county and you will find a short report on each of the sites by clicking on the links to the left. There is also a County list showing first dates if known. I have used as references the excellent Birds of Gloucestershire by Christopher M. Swaine and also the Gloucestershire Bird Reports from 1951 to date.

Naturenet

Website

List of reserves etc…

Severnside Birds

Website

The web site for anyone with an interest in the birds of the Severn Beach area on the mid-Severn Estuary. Severn Beach is a coastal village in South Gloucestershire and situated at the top corner of the Bristol Channel, England. The web site is dedicated to all birders, past and present, who have visited the patch on a regular basis…

Wildfowl Photography

Website

This website includes wildfowl photographs taken at Slimbridge which is home to the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust in Gloucestershire, UK and which was founded by Sir Peter Scott….

Photographers & Artists

Artist - Jackie Garner

Gallery

I'm a Gloucestershire-based artist, who originally concentrated on British wildlife art as well as making occasional forays into still life and portraiture. Since then my wildlife art has been inspired by the wildlife of the Falkland Islands, and my latest venture is illustrating research into the wildlife art found in ancient Egypt…

Artist - Martin Ridley

Gallery

A Creative Process Revealed: Wildlife Art Description - Gallery of wildlife and wilderness art depicting birds and other animals, paintings in oils and watercolours with accompanying original sketches by artist painter / illustrator Martin Ridley. View how sketches, preparatory drawings and a gallery of wildlife paintings are evolved from initial field encounters, detailed information about creative working methods with wildlife watching tips, painting stages from initial brush stroke to completion, oils in progress. Services include e-Cards, wildlife artwork screensavers, forthcoming wildlife art events calendar, selected art, conservation and wildlife links and search facility to source images.

Bob Bushell's Wildlife Photography

Gallery & Blog

Birdwatching information, gallery, and daily photo reports from the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire, England maintained by and for disabled and housebound birdwatchers.

Photographer - David J Slater - DJS Photography

Gallery

Photography by David J Slater Based in the Forest of Dean & Wye Valley…

Photographer - James S Lees Wildlife Images

Gallery

I have been working with birds for ten years now and am currently Reserve Warden at WWT Slimbridge. I have been working there for four years helping to maintain 800 acres of wetland. I also lead bird walks, Photography Tours, Digiscoping days, Commentated Wild Bird Feeds, Land Rover Safaris and lots more. ..

Photographer - Nicki Gwynn-Jones - A Bird's Eye View

Website

Fine art photography by Nicki Gwynn-Jones ARPS…