Sunday 6 September 2020

August tours information and sightings.

August saw the resumption of ours tours at the Cotswold Water Park.

See report below.

Walking up to our first lake we could hear Chiffchaffs all around us along with Blackcaps, the Lakes are attracting more Water birds now as we move nearer Autumn.

The sight of three Common Cranes circling above us was a highlight but they soon dropped down out of sight.
A single Hobby was seen along with Kestrel two Sparrowhawks and a couple of Buzzard high up on the thermals.

Checking from the side of the lake we soon saw a large flock of Lapwing along with a couple of Dunlin and a Redshank flying around, out on the lake we found 50+ Red Crested Pochard and around 25 Tufted Duck along with 40 Coots and 8 Common Pochard. Around the lake edge both Little and Great White Egrets were found.

Several Swallows and House Martins were flying low over the water with the odd Sand Martin mixed in with them.

Both Green and Great spotted Woodpeckers were heard along with two Cettis Warblers.

On the walk back we found Robin, Wren, Common Tern, Grey Heron, Whitethroat, Reed Warbler and a small tit flock which included Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tits.

Still nice to see several species of butterfly on the wing including two migrant Painted Ladies.

A nice way to get back to running our tours again.DT

Saturday 20 June 2020


Regarding the current Covid 19 pandemic we would just like to let our customers know where we are regarding our tours.

We are looking at resuming our half day tours at The Cotswold Water Park around July/August time.

Our full days tour are still an issue for us as a lot of the venues we use are still not fully up and running regarding the toilets facilities and bird hides, also some are asking that you book a time slot to visit, so with this in mind we do not feel we can put a date on it at the moment.

Obviously the government guidelines are changing week by week so we may be able to start tours sooner if things change.

Please contact us if you have a voucher and would like to discuss options.

Kind regards

Darren & Nick.

Saturday 22 February 2020

Otmoor in February

Today we visited Oxfordshire and the RSPB Reserve of Otmoor.

Weather conditions at the start of the day very wet but this some turned into wonderful sunshine although a stiff breeze persisted all day.

A walk to the first hide produced Coal tit, Great spotted woodpecker and a Green woodpecker flew from the tree tops ahead of us. Plenty of Fieldfare were sat in the trees and a few Redwing flew over.

Looking out over the first area we found 2 common cranes flying low at the back of the trees some to disappear out of sight, latter we would have some fantastic views of these birds on the ground.

Heading out towards big Otmoor we saw several large groups of Lapwing and Golden plover well over 5000 birds, as we watched them we saw all the Lapwing and plovers take to the air and soon found out why as a female Hen harrier heading towards them, we watched the bird move through them as it heading away out over the surrounding countryside.  A magical sight to see on this lovely winters morning.

At the hide around 100 small birds were feeding on the grain that is being put out for the birds over the winter months these included 30 Reed buntings, 30 Linnets, 10 Goldfich, 25 Chaffinch all feeding on the ground great to see so many birds taking advantage of the food.

Moving off to the first screen we had close views of Teal, Wigeon, Pochard and Tufted duck out on the water along with several Moorhen.

Several large groups of duck flew over us giving some time for duck ID in flight, the Pintail are easy to pick out with their long bodies, also several Wigeon flew over.

Here we had our first view of Marsh harrier along with a single Kestrel sat on the telephone wires with several Red kites drifting around.

Out side the hide a Muntjack deer gave a close view as it walk right passed the window also a Chinese water deer ran off down the path and keeping with the mammal theme a hare was found out on the marsh imitating a mould of earth!.

On our way back to the car park we saw a Redwing drop into the bush in front of us.

Buzzards were seen briefly out over the reserve.

Latter in the day a fly by Bittern put in an appearance very briefly.

Another good day out in the field with some wonderful birds seen in some interesting weather conditions. Total species seen 56.DT

Tuesday 28 January 2020

Winter in The Cotswold Water Park

Winter tours.

Our first tours this year have seen us at The Cotswold Water Park, with all the recent rain the rivers and lakes are at bursting point with some areas under water and impassable even with wellies.

Two contrasting days one with strong winds and rain the other beautiful sunshine all day, but still several good sightings of all the species on offer. A few fly by Kingfishers with one sat in a small bush just above the Thames waiting for a fish. Large number of duck are around the park at the moment with Wigeon, Teal, Pochard, Gadwall, Mallard, Tufted duck, Shoveler, Pintail, Goldeneye, Goosander and Red Crested Pochard all seen in good numbers. Smaller birds are harder to find but several sightings of Chiffchaff, Goldcrest and Firecrest make scanning the tit flocks worthwhile.

Several birds of prey are about with Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Buzzard, Red kite and Marsh Harrier all seen along with groups of Lapwing.

Woodpeckers can be heard calling and drumming always nice to hear them, along with groups of Redwing and Fieldfare feeding on the berry trees.

There are a few rarer species about with a Black necked Grebe and Scaup out on the Lakes.

With the large number of birds around the winter can be one of the best times to visit the Water Park there can be over 25,000 birds out on the Lakes!.

A good start to the year and looking forward to the coming seasons, just get out there and enjoy our countryside. DT.