Next Indoor Event

14/01/2015 (Wed)
Birds on the brink - 40 years of conservation in Mauritius
Dr Anthony Cheke 7.45pm Exeter Hall Kidlington OX5 1AB
In 1973-5 Anthony led a small expedition promoted by the BOU to study of the endemic birds of the Mascarene Islands – Mauritius, Reunion and Rodrigues islands in the southern Indian Ocean east of Madagascar. When first discovered by Europeans in the 16th century these islands were uninhabited and peopled by giant tortoises, lizards, fruit-bats and flightless birds, including the iconic Dodo. The biggest and best birds soon succumbed to invasive predators and hunting, but there are survivors which were then (1973) on the brink of extinction. In the years since these islands have become the focus of intensive study and ecological rescue work, and the scene of several unexpected discoveries. The full story would take all day, but Anthony will give us an insight into how what started as a simple ecological study has grown into a multidisciplinary international science project.

Next Outing

04/01/2015 (Sun)
Durlston Head, Dorset
Field Trip to Durlston Country Park, Dorset on 4/1/2015 The meet up time for this trip is 1000hrs in the pay and display car park within the country park. Parking charges for the day should be in the region of £3. There are toilets and a cafe within the park. Durlston Park can be found by leaving Wareham towards Swanage on the A351. Once in Swanage, look for the brown signs for the park, and follow these up the hill through the back streets of Swanage to the pay and display car park. The habitat of the area is quite diverse ranging through sea, cliffs. meadows and woodland and should provide us with a good range of species. The sea might produce Gannet, Brent Geese, Common Scoter and Fulmar to name a few. Also Bottle-nosed Dolphin are often there in January. The cliffs should provide Peregrine and Raven. The rocky ledges should also provide some early returning Guillemot and Razorbill if we are lucky. Skylark should be calling over the meadows. The woodland should hold all the usual tits and finches but also Goldcrest and Chiffchaff, and if we are very lucky Firecrest. It should be a good day weather permitting, I hope to see you there. All are welcome

Bird News

Date Species Count Site Who
2014-12-18Red-crested Pochard6Sutton CourtenayBJWy
2014-12-18Common Redshank1Sutton CourtenayBJWy
2014-12-18Green Sandpiper1Sutton CourtenayBJWy
2014-12-18Northern LapwingC200Sutton CourtenayBJWy
2014-12-12Eurasian Sparrowhawk1femaleBucklandMRo
2014-12-12Grey Wagtail1BucklandMRo
2014-12-12Common Raven2Cholsey: Lollingdon HillPC
2014-12-11Peregrine Falcon2Aston TirroldBJWy
2014-12-11Peregrine Falcon1Oxford: CarfaxRCA
2014-12-10Merlin1Devil's PunchbowlBJWy
2014-12-10Common LinnetC50Devil's PunchbowlBJWy
2014-12-10Common Raven2Devil's PunchbowlBJWy
2014-12-10Stonechat2Devil's PunchbowlBJWy
2014-12-10Corn Buntingc80Cholsey: Cholsey Marsh Nature ReservePC
2014-12-10Eurasian Sparrowhawk2Cholsey: Cholsey Marsh Nature ReservePC
2014-12-10Water Rail2Cholsey: Cholsey Marsh Nature ReservePC
2014-12-10European Golden Plover100+Cholsey: Cholsey HillPC
2014-12-09Peregrine Falcon1CowleyRCA
2014-12-07Goosander6Buscot: Buscot LakeMRo

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