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Bittern Botaurus stellaris ©Nigel Blake Website

Lincolnshire is a very big county and ornithologically it is over shadowed by Yorkshire to the North and Norfolk to the South East. However, time spent birding in Lincolnshire can be very rewarding. Flanked by two major estuaries, the Humber and the Wash, which provide vast mudflats for migrating waders and over-wintering wildfowl, these two estuary dominate the coastal birding. These two areas are separated by Donna Nook, Rimac and Gibraltar Point. Inland the birding is influenced by the river valleys of the Trent and Witham, with the occasion reservoir providing areas of birding note. The central Wolds providing vast areas of farmland, and ecologically are very interesting. There are few hills in Lincolnshire!

Peregrines on Man-made Structures

Peregrines nesting on man made structures in Lincolnshire is only a recent phenomenon. Birds have bred on Lincoln Cathedral since 2007. There has been a nest tray on the walkway of St Wulframs, Grantham since 13th December 2007. Bob Sheppard made the tray and installed it with his colleague Alan Ball with help from Derek Jackson. Earlier in 2007, a pair of Peregrines had nested on the west side of the walkway of the Church on a tiny patch of gravel. They laid two eggs and one chick successfully fledged.

In 2008, the birds did not nest on the church, but a pair nested nearby and raised three male chicks.

In 2009, Peregrines returned to St Wulframs, laid four eggs and raised two chicks in the nest tray. There was one female chick and one male. These chicks were ringed at 16 to 18 days old by Alan and Bob, under BTO license. The Grantham Peregrine Project is run under license, and all photographic equipment was installed before birds took up territory.

Top Sites

Barton Claypits

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Old clay pits in the shadow of the Humber Bridge, on the edge of the Humber estuary attract wintering wildfowl, but reed beds can support wintering Bittern and Bearded Tit. LTNC own several of these pits.

Cleethorpes Coast Local Nature Reserve

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This is an excellent all-round under watched site with a good variety of habitat. The area runs from Cleethorpes Leisure Centre (TA 315 080) south for one mile to Buck Beck Outfall (TA 326 068). A strip of buckthorn runs the length flanked by salt marsh, mudflat and an outer sandbank known as the roost ridge, this is quite spectacular (winter) on the bigger tides with thousands of Knot, Golden and Grey Plover, Bar tailed Godwit, Sanderling, Dunlin etc swelled by numbers from Spurn bight across the river and other feeding areas around the estuary. Do not attempt to walk out to this ridge on spring tides unless you want a ride in the inshore lifeboat! With all this food available Peregrine has become almost routine in winter with Merlin usually present. To the rear lies the boating lake, Phalaropes, Bewicks Swan and Merganser among birds recorded here. Toilets and refreshments are available here at the Discovery Centre, (open year round). The pumping station (TA 322 072); surrounded by mature trees/bushes can be productive in favourable conditions spring/autumn; Yellow browed Warbler, Firecrest and Red breasted Flycatcher have been seen here. Behind the free car park at buck beck outfall lies the area known as the old tip, again plenty of trees/bushes to investigate, Red backed and Great grey Shrike recorded here. At the back flows Buck Beck, a pleasant walk in itself, (Black bellied Dipper 1967). The site is best worked by parking at the free car park at Buck Beck Outfall and walking north along the tarmac walk/cycleway to the Leisure Centre and returning via the beach between the buckthorn and greenmarsh. Among the sites notable rarities are Lesser Yellowlegs and Gull-billed Tern, anything can turn up here.

Cleethorpes Country Park


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Occasionally this site turns up some really interesting birds. The site has a ranger/warden, but often there are more fishermen than birds on the lake. Always worth a look.

Covenham Reservoir


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A huge concrete sided bath tub. Never has such a bird unfriendly habit been constructed, yet the site always attracts sea ducks, gulls, divers, grebes and wildfowl. Everything always seems a very long way off, yet the site has hosted an impressive list of rarities.

Frampton Marsh

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is a RSPB reserve with Kirton Marsh (TF351358) adjoining it. Past rarities have included Lesser Grey and Woodchat Shrike, Little Egret. Winter Harrier Roost.

Gedney Drove End and Terrington Marsh

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both form part of The Wash National Nature Reserve. All sites hold large numbers of shorebirds and wildfowl in winter.

Gibraltar Point

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(Located 2/3 kms south of Skegness) One of Lincolnshire's top migration watch points can always turn up something. Vast mud flats attract large numbers of wintering wildfowl and waders. Recent years has seen a significant number of wintering Shorelarks.

Holbeach Marsh

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all 3 Harriers seen also Short-eared Owl, rarer waders seen include Spotted Sandpiper, Sharp-tailed Sand and Long-billed Dowitcher.

North Lincolnshire Coast

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Cleethorpes mud flats. Park on the sea front and walk out towards the Spurn peninsular. Vast area of tidal mud flats, with lots of wader on passage and over wintering. Best in winter but can get very cold and wind swept!

Tetney Marshes RSPB


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Tetney Marshes covers over 1,500 hectares of coastal mudflats, salt marsh, dunes and saline lagoons on the north Lincolnshire coast. The reserve forms an important part of the Humber estuary, which is one of the top five estuaries for birds in the UK, with at least 175,000 birds using the estuary during the winter months…

The Wash

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Vast area of mud flats and tidal creeks, best viewed from Witham Mouth, Butterwick, Wrangle and Friskney. Birds can sometimes be along way off.

Toft Newton Reservoir


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Good site for Gulls and Wildfowl.

Willingham Woods (Market Rasen)

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good site for Crossbill. Famously had White-throated Sparrow for the winter 1992/3.


Dave Bradbeer,

Additional Material



County Recorder

John Badley [South]

c/o RSPB Lincolnshire Wash Reserves, Roads Farmhouse, Frampton Roads, Frampton, Boston, Lincs PE20 1AY


John Clarkson [North]

33 Ramsgate,, Louth, Lincs LN11 0NB

07734 214603


Number of Species

Number of bird species: 383

County Bird - Grey Heron Ardea cinerea

Useful Reading

2008 LBC Report

The report has shown that birds of prey such as marsh harrier, peregrine and barn owl fared particularly well in 2008 perhaps due the availability of good quality habitat. Andrew Chick of the Lincolnshire Bird Club said, ‘In 1971 there was only one breeding pair of marsh harriers in the whole country. In 2008 we had 90 breeding females in this county alone.’ Andrew continued, ‘Barn owls also had a very successful 2008 with an estimated 900 pairs in Lincolnshire. This makes Lincolnshire potentially the most successful county in the United Kingdom for barn owls.’ Other species also enjoyed a successful 2008 including Lincolnshire’s waders and waterfowl. John Badley, site manager of the RSPB’s Frampton Marsh and Freiston Shore reserves said, 'This report shows that many of the counties birds are faring well. We are lucky to have some of the best wetlands in Europe, such as The Wash and the Humber and with some exciting habitat creation projects here, the future for birds like knot and wigeon is looking really good.'

2009 LBC Report

For more details, or for bulk order enquiries contact SALES: Bill Sterling, "Newlyn", 5 Carlton Avenue, Healing, N.E.Lincs, DN41 7PW - wbsterling@hotmail.com - In terms of birds, the 2009 report makes interesting reading; the increases in Bitterns, Barn Owls, Little Egrets, Bearded Tits and breeding Red Kites highlights the continued ornithological importance of Lincolnshire. Other interesting birds included a long staying King Eider at Freiston Shore/Witham Mouth, a short staying Terek Sandpiper at Gibraltar Point and a dramatic increase in Cetti’s Warbler records throughout Lincolnshire. It is also interesting to note the increase of records from Frampton Marsh and Alkborough Flats, two recently developed sites, which surely have a very important future ahead of them.

Where to Watch Birds in the East Midlands

by Rob Fray, Christopher Helm 2006, ISBN 0713675306 See Fatbirder Review

ISBN: 0713675306

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Useful Information

Far Ings Nature reserve

email: farings@lincstrust.co.uk


Telephone: 0891 700257 [50p per minute]

Gibraltar Point

email: gibpoint@lincstrust.co.uk

Forums & Mailing Lists

Lincs Bird Club Forum


The LBC Forum. To register on this forum YOU must NOW be a member of the LBC - see Membership Page for details…

Guides & Tour Operators

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

Birding Pal


Local birders willing to show visiting birders around their area…

Trip Reports

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


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.

2007 [04 April] - David & Amanda Mason - North Lincolnshire


We visited Far Ings in the late afternoon on 12th and early morning on 13th April and searched in vain for a visiting drake Garganey. We also missed out on Bittern and Bearded Tit. In fact, species wise, the site was a little disappointing. We saw the occasional Snipe, Marsh Harrier, Tree Sparrow and Bullfinch, but with only 35 species overall from two visits, it just wasn't our day (or two!)…

Places to Stay

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

Beach House in Cleethorpes


Beach House is our beautiful self catering holiday home (sleeps up to 6 people – 3 bedrooms) right in the heart of Cleethorpes. It is located in a quiet residential street, just around the corner from Cleethorpes Beach. Private parking and gardens.

Cedar Park Cottages - Tetney


North Lincolnshire Self Catering Holiday Cottages , Tetney, Lincolnshire DN36 5NG - Standing in 5 acres of landscaped gardens, including lawned areas, meadows and paddocks it is an ideal spot for the holiday maker who wants to be close to the coast and also enjoy the peace and tranquility of the Lincolnshire countryside…


Fenland Wildlife Watch


Lincolnshire police have 6 wildlife crime officers covering the county. 5 officers perform the role on a voluntary basis in addition to their other duties, but there is also a full time wildlife crime officer PC Nick Willey. The priorities relating to wildlife and environmental crime are protection of the Hen Harrier (Operation Artemis), Bat Crime (Operation Bat), Habitat Damage, the illegal trade in endangered species and education.

Friends Of Far Ings National Nature Reserve

Facebook Page

Lincolnshire Bird Club


HON. SECRETARY: Robert Carr - secretary@lincsbirdclub.co.uk - Joining the Lincolnshire Bird Club is a great way to make new birdwatching friends and contacts in Lincolnshire! If you are a "beginner", but keen to become actively involved in birding, you will find that learning about your county's wild birds - how, when and where to see them - is both easier and more enjoyable when undertaken in the company of our local enthusiasts. If you're already an active birdwatcher you can add another dimension to your birding by becoming involved in our varied local activities…

Lincolnshire Naturalists Union


The Lincolnshire Naturalists Union was founded in 1893 and so we have over a hundred years experience and information in Lincolnshire`s wildlife and geology. The LNU proves a free weekly wildlife email service, the Wildnews Bulletin, with wildlife news from around the county. You can contact editor Roger Parsons to sign up via the following webpage: http://www.lnu.org/wildnews.php

Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust


Lincolnshire Trust for Nature Conservation is now Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust (Formerly Lincolnshire Trust for Nature Conservation) The Trust is a voluntary charitable organisation that cares for Lincolnshire`s wildlife and countryside. It is one of 47 similar Wildlife Trusts covering the UK, which are affiliated to the Royal Society for Nature Conservation. The Lincolnshire Trust is one of the oldest of these county trusts, having been founded in 1948. The Trust covers the whole of the historic county of Lincolnshire - from the Humber to the Wash. You can sign up for a free weekly email bulletin on wildlife sightings via the Trust’s Wildlife News webpage: http://www.lincstrust.org.uk/wildlife/index.php

RSPB Lincoln Members Group


The Lincoln RSPB Local Group was established in 1974 and is run by volunteers. We hold regular events to which RSPB members and members of the public are welcome…

RSPB Grimsby Members Group


Meetings held at the Cromwell Banqueting Suite (opposite the Leisure Centre Cleethorpes) on the first Monday of the month from September through to May…

RSPB South Lincs Members Group


Unless otherwise specified, you do not need to be a member of the RSPB (or the local group) to join us on our events, and birdwatching experience is not necessary. If you have any questions please call the contact number shown with the event details.

Woodland Trust


The Woodland Trust, Autumn Park, Dysart Road, Grantham, Lincolnshire, NG31 6LL - 01476 581111


Gibraltar Point Bird Observatory


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Warden: Kevin Wilson, Gibraltar Point Field Station, Skegness, Lincs PE24 4SU. 01754 898079 lincstrust@gibpoint.freeserve.co.uk


University of Hull - Ecology and Environment


A hands-on degree that develops your knowledge of the diversity and complexity of the natural world.


Baston & Langtoft Gravel Pits


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The various gravel workings between Langtoft and Baston, north of Peterborough have left numerous pits in varying stages of natural regeneration. These pits, and their surrounding habitats, provide good general birding with plenty of year round interest…

Deepings Lakes

Information PDF

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The Deepings Pits comprise two old ballast pits which were dug for material for the construction of the railway which runs between them. They are The Mere and Dandridge`s Pit. Both are private and very difficult to work. The Mere can be viewed from the track which runs alongside the River Welland where, especially in the spring, excellent views can be had of the breeding herons and cormorants. The woodland area alongside the track is also excellent for general woodland species with woodpeckers, treecreepers, tits, etc

Far Ings Nature Reserve


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The varied habitats support more than 230 species of wildflower, 50 nesting bird species, and a wealth of invertebrates including more than 250 species of moths…

Gibraltar Point National Nature Reserve


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Gibraltar Point National Nature Reserve is an area of some 430 hectares comprising sandy and muddy seashores, sand-dunes, saltmarshes and freshwater habitats extending for a distance of about 3 miles along the Lincolnshire coast, from the southern end of Skegness to the entrance of the Wash. The Reserve is managed by the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust under a lease from its owners the Lincolnshire County Council and East Lindsey District Council. The primary function of the Reserve, which is recognised as an area of international scientific interest, is to conserve this unspoilt stretch of coastline and its important communities of plants and animals. Within the Reserve is the most extensive complex of sand-dunes and saltmarshes in Lincolnshire.

Lincolnshire Nature Reserves


Map with all the reserves in the county…

RSPB - Frampton Marsh


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In winter there are brent geese, birds of prey, twites, corn buntings, rock pipits and, with luck, Lapland buntings. In summer, large numbers of redshanks breed at an exceptionally high density. Other breeding species include oystercatchers, skylarks and reed buntings. Marsh harriers can frequently be seen hunting over the reserve…

RSPB - Freiston Shore


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Get close views of roosting wading birds at high tide. You may see tree sparrows, corn buntings, skylarks, yellowhammers and a barn owl. In winter, brent geese, red-breasted mergansers, eiders and divers are offshore, while birds of prey hunt the marshes. Summer is good for nesting wading birds, including avocets, plus ringed plovers…

RSPB - Tetney Marshes


Satellite View

Tetney Marshes covers over 1,500 hectares of coastal mudflats, salt marsh, dunes and saline lagoons on the north Lincolnshire coast. The reserve forms an important part of the Humber estuary, which is one of the top five estuaries for birds in the UK, with at least 175,000 birds using the estuary during the winter months.

Snipe Dales Country Park


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Situated on the southern edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds, Snipe Dales is one of few semi-natural wet valley systems still surviving. These wet valleys, rough grazing, and scrub and wood land of the Nature Reserve provide good habitat for a variety of wildlife. Its 220 acres of steep-sided valleys are fretted by streams which have cut through the soft Spilsby Sandstone to the underlying Kimmeridge Clay. Breeding birds include grasshopper warbler, willow warbler, sedge warbler, meadow pipit and yellow hammer.

The Wash National Nature Reserve

PDF Brochure

Satellite View

The Wash National Nature Reserve is the biggest reserve in England, covering over 8880 ha. It’s also the most important wetland site in the UK, with its vast mudflats and huge expanse of saltmarsh supporting thousands of birds all year round. In winter, the Reserve attracts large numbers of wildfowl including pink-footed geese, brent geese and shelduck, while in the summer, waders and seabirds come here to breed. The Wash is also one of the best breeding areas in England for common seals.

Waters Edge Visitor Centre


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North Lincolnshire Council has adopted the Waters Edge Visitor Centre as the communication and transmission hub for the region wide "Wildlife Surveillance Network"…

Whisby Nature Park


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The Nature Park is an area of 160 acres of lakes, ponds, woodland, scrub and grassland, created by the quarrying of sand and gravel since the 1930s. It has been established for the quiet enjoyment of the countryside and its wildlife and contains a wide range of habitats supporting an abundance of wildlife. Although the wildlife areas at Whisby are substantially man-made, they are of increasing importance to animals and plants since much wildlife has been lost in the countryside through changes in land use. The wetlands of the Nature Park are of particular value since so many ponds and marshes in the wider countryside have been drained and lost. The Nature Park`s lakes and ponds support a great variety of waterfowl, amphibians, aquatic insects and plants. The surrounding scrub and woodland are also valuable for many birds and insects, whilst grassland is rich in flowers and insects such as butterflies and grasshoppers.


Bird Mad


Yorkshire born Dean Eades now lives in Lincolnshire which is where he spends the majority of his time looking for the next great shot. He makes regular trips to the Norfolk and East Yorkshire coasts and loves Scotland, when he manages to get there! His life evolves around his love of birds, wildlife and photography. Dean is one of the administrators for the Lincolnshire Bird Club forum and provides the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust with many of his images, he has also been a warden to help out the Trust when needed. His work has appeared on the BBC '& ITV RSPB' and has been published in Birdwatch and Bird Watching magazines, & BBC Wildlife Magazine.Books,websites & displays on several occasions…

Cock of the Rock - Andy Mason


A birding miscellany…

Gibraltar Point Bird Observatory Blog


The Bird Observatory at Gibraltar Point National Nature Reserve is managed and run by The Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust whilst the Observatory Ringing is carried out entirely by volunteers at Gibraltar Point. Ringing started at Gib in 1949 and has continued to this day with over 200,000 New birds ringed during that time by a huge number of both local and visiting ringers. As this site is being written and managed by the Observatory Ringing Group it's content is mainly concerned with the ringing on the reserve. (Although i (Mick Briggs) am working on an idea to update the blog more regularly with up to date sightings from the reserve) Check back regularly though and i shall endeavour to keep you entertained with our activities, above all, please enjoy our Observatory Blog!

Howards Birdspot


Howard Booty is an amateur photographer from Barton Upon Humber, North Lincolnshire. I am interested in specifically wildlife photography, mainly birds…

Jack Dawson Wildlife


My name is Jack Dawson and I am 16 years old. I am a wildlife conservationist, photographer, trainee bird ringer and nest recorder.

Josh's Josh Jones


Now 19, living in Lincs [UK] but at University in Sheffield. Lifelong interest in birds aided initially by my father and enhanced as an impressionable youngster by local birders, who I am indebted to! Only really got serious with the hobby after a trip to Israel in 2000. My patch is the local gravel pit complex adjacent to my home village (Baston & Langtoft), and I have been birding here as often as possible since my mother would let me out the house on my own!

Lincolnshire Wildlife


Local wildlife shots from in and around the Waters' Edge country park…

Midmarsh Jottings


A mainly pictorial record of the wildlife and events in my part of Lincolnshire. My garden has two bird nest boxes and a Hedgehog house fitted with video cameras. There are several bird feeders and a large pond attracting a variety of wildlife to the garden…



The blog mainly features photographs from North Lincolnshire and foreign trips-most photos taken with a Canon 1DIIN 1DIII and a Canon 500 f4…

Steve's Birding & Wildlife BLOG


Steve Routledge - Barnetby-Le-Wold., Lincolnshire., United Kingdom - I have had an interest in the natural world since i was knee high to a Grasshopper and have been birding seriously since 1985,in recent years i have taken an interest in the insect world and in particular Odonata, Orthoptera and Syrphidae.

The Grantham Peregrine Blog


Updated daily…

Will Bowell - Will’s Adlib blog


I'm Will Bowell, one half of the incredible double act, the Wandering Birders and this blog is my effort to branch out and ride the blogging wave that has hit the birding world. I'm from Lincolnshire, England and spend my spare time birding and taking poor photos…

Other Links

Baytree Owl Centre


One of the largest and most varied selections of owls and birds of prey you will ever see, combined with a large indoor flying arena, the Baytree Owl centre provides a unique interactive experience for all ages…

Birdline East Anglia


What's about? Simply phone 09068 700245 Please report your bird sightings to phone/text 07941333970 or e birdnews@birdlineeastanglia.co.uk - Calls to 09068 700245 cost 60p/min from a BT landline other networks may vary…

Countryside For All


These leaflets contain detailed access information for 16 countryside sites across Lincolnshire. They include woodland, lakes, coast and nature reserves.



Located in Spalding. All our products are checked and endorsed by the BTO (British Trust for Ornithology) and meet all the BSA (Bird Care Standards Association) criteria…

Marston Sewage Treatment Works


Marston Sewage treatment works is a relatively modern sewage works situated alongside the river Witham about five miles NW of Grantham. However by still employing some traditional methods as well as the modern, the area remains very attractive to birdlife, with large expanses of flooded meadows and man made settlement lagoons proving irresistible to local and migratory birds alike.

Vine House Farm


Vine House faram is a traditional English farm, handed down from one generation to the next. My great grandfather moved here from Wisbeach in 1883. My grandfather, father, myself and my 3 girls have all been born in this house. I have always been interested in wildlife…

Waters Edge Wildlife Reports


The continuing redevelopment of the Water`s Edge complex at Barton-on-Humber saw the opening of the southern part of the site to the general public in April 2001. The impact of this development on the breeding birds can be assessed through the results of the breeding bird survey, which was again conducted by Graham Catley for Nyctea Consultancy…

Photographers & Artists

Artist - Toni Watts


I hope you enjoy looking through the latest original paintings, limited edition prints and greetings cards. All are available to purchase securely and simply through the online shop…

Firecrest Wildlife Photography


Carole & Peter Leigh

Photographer - David Lingard


I have been a photographer as long as I can remember - my interests have changed over the years and so have my subjects. I spent many years photographing flying machines until I realised that nature does it better, and it's much more of a challenge to picture a bird rather than an aircraft…

Photographer - Dean Eades - Bird Mad


Yorkshire born Dean Eades now lives in Lincolnshire, which is where he spends the majority of his time looking for the next great shot. He makes regular trips to the Norfolk and East Yorkshire coasts and loves Scotland, when he manages to get there! His life evolves around his love of birds, wildlife and photography. Dean is one of the administrators for the Lincolnshire Bird Club forum and provides the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust with many of his images. His work has appeared on BBC's Look North, ITV's Calendar and has been published in Birdwatch and Bird Watching magazines on several occasions…

Photographer - Graham Catley


Bird and sundry photography by Graham Catley - ornithological consultant, photographer, serious local patch birder…

Photographer - Josh Jones


I am a 19 year old birdwatcher, living in South Lincolnshire but at Sheffield University. I have been birding since I could hold binoculars (about 2), but my interest has only escalated to where it is now in the past couple of years…

Photographer - Matt Latham


Originally from North Wales, I have been living in Lincoln, England, with my fiancee for over 5 years. During the week I'm a Project Manager for an Environmental Consultancy, which means my time for photography is limited and, therefore, even more precious to me. .

Photographer - Nick Clayton


Bird and other wildlife photos…

Photographer - Steve’s Wild Bird Images


My name is Steve Nesbitt & I have had an interest in birds generally for some years now but am now looking to move into a new direction of bird watching & photography in a more serious way…

Photographer – Roger Hatcliffe


Hello, and a very warm welcome to Lincsbirder.co.uk If you are interested in viewing high quality photographs of British birds then you have come to the right place. All the photographs shown on this site are taken by me, mostly but not exclusively in Lincolnshire. Please use the top or bottom navigation systems to view the photographs. The photographs are grouped as to the type of bird and are really self explanatory…

Webcam - Peregrines in Grantham