All details of meetings, including a comprehensive programme of mid-week meetings, can be found in Bird News, (the club’s monthly publication for members), or by contacting us.
Friday 18 May – Highnam Woods
EVENING MEETING. Meet at the RSPB car park (SO 778190) on A40 west of Gloucester at 19:00 (car park open from 18:45). A site for Nightingale at the western edge of the range, as well as for all three woodpecker species. Footpaths can be muddy. BOC is making a contribution to RSPB Gloucester for
access to the car park, and for the leader’s time. A donation to BOC of £2 pp on the day would be appreciated.
Leader: Hannah Booth
Sunday 20 May – Ham Wall
A joint meeting with Bristol Naturalists. Meet at 09:30 at the RSPB car park (ST 448395). From the middle of Meare village on the B3151 Wedmore to Glastonbury road, take the minor road south signposted Ashcott. The car park is about a mile down this road opposite the more familiar Meare Heath/Ashcott
Corner car park, beyond the Railway Inn. We will walk through parts of the RSPB Ham Wall and Meare Heath reserves, hoping to see and hear Bittern, Marsh Harrier, Great White Egret and Hobby. The area is particularly good for warbler song. The walk will be mostly along flat hard ground although we may go onto some wet grass tracks. Non-RSPB members will need to pay for parking.
Leader: Giles Morris
Tuesday 22 May – Newport Wetlands ST 334834, NP18 2YH. Satnav. 51.545978,-2.9617785
Picnic walk. Take the M4 over the new bridge towards Newport to junction 23a and take the A4810, After three
roundabouts this road is very straight for a long way, past industrial estates and new housing developments.
Eventually the dual carriageway curves first right then left. Go straight through the next small roundabout and at the second, larger, roundabout follow the RSPB sign onto the West Nash Road. Keep on this road for about one and a half miles. Watch for a brown-coloured reserve sign on the left indicating the almost immediate right turn into Nash village (Easy to miss this road and a need to turn round). Keep on through the village with the power station in full view. The RSPB car park is on the left-hand side. There are brown duck signs at the various junctions but they can easily be missed. Hopefully, we will see Bearded Tits, Cetti’s Warblers, Cuckoo and Marsh Harrier in the reed beds and waders on the Severn Estuary. After our picnic lunch, we will travel about two miles to the village of Goldcliff hopefully to see breeding Avocets and other waders. Level walking at both sites. Note that there is now a £3 charge for the RSPB car park for non-members.
Leaders: Margaret and Ray Bulmer
Tuesday 29 May – Shapwick Heath/Ham Wall ST 449397. BA6 9SX. Satnav. 51.153622,-2.788921
Picnic walk. Meet at 10:30 in the RSPB Ham Wall Reserve car park at Ashcott Corner. From the middle of Meare Village on the B3151 Wedmore to Glastonbury road, take the minor road south, signposted to Ashcott. After approx. one mile from the car park is situated on the left just after the Railway Inn and the drain bridge. We can confidently expect to see Hobby, wetland birds including Bittern and if really lucky Otter. Level walking. We will return to the car park for lunch at about 13.00 and visit Ham Wall afterwards for those wishing to stay on. Parking charges - please note that these have been introduced at Ham Wall for both the Natural England and RSPB car parks. RSPB members are exempt at the Ham Wall car park (place membership card in the windscreen), but there is no exemption at the Shapwick site. (Remember to remove all valuables from parked cars.)
Leader: Peter Holbrook
Saturday 2 June – Quantocks
Meet at Bowling Green car park in Holford at 10:00 (ST 155410). Turn left off the A39 in Holford village and drive down the lane to a small car park. We will aim to walk through Hodder's and Slaughterhouse Coombes and then up over the open ground to Bicknoller Post, across Longstone Hill before dropping back down into Holford. Bring a picnic lunch and stout waterproof footwear. The meeting will last into mid-afternoon and cover about four miles. The target species are Wood Warbler, Pied Flycatcher, Redstart and Tree Pipit. The open ground may deliver Whinchat, Cuckoo and possibly Dartford Warbler. Call Jane Cumming at 01275 265174 to seek or offer car- sharing.
Leader: Jeff Holmes
Tuesday 05 June – Badminton ST 805825 GL9 1ET Satnav 51.541401, -2.2819467
Meet in the public car park outside the village hall in Hayes Lane for a four and a half mile walk through the estate and surrounding countryside. A flat walk, possibly mud but no stiles.
Leader: Nick Hawkridge
Friday 8 June – Forest of Dean
EVENING MEETING. Meet in the car park at Cannop Ponds (SO 609107) at 18:30. Go through Parkend on the B4234, turn right onto the B4226 and shortly turn right again on a track to the car park. We will wander around Cannop Ponds hoping to see feeder birds such as Marsh Tit and water birds such as Mandarin. Towards dusk, we will move on to Crabtree Hill to look and listen for Nightjar. Rejoin the B4226 and turn right towards the Speech House Hotel. Beyond the hotel, approximately a third of a mile on the left is a large car park at SO 624124. You will certainly want insect repellent and you may be glad of a torch. Please contact the leader during the previous week if you can offer or want a lift, particularly since the bridge toll is still in place and it is useful to share the cost.
Leader: Jane Cumming
Tuesday 12 June – Compton Dando ST 646645 BS39 4JZ Satnav 51.378910, -2.509517
Meet at the Compton Inn car park (there is also parking available on the road). From the A37 take the minor road to Publow in Pensford. Cross the river at Woollard and after about quarter of a mile turn left to Compton Dando. The walk of about three and a half miles includes a fairly steep short hill at the start and there are five or six stiles. There is a range of habitat that includes farmland and woodland with views of the river Chew. We hope to see Grey Wagtail and there is the possibility of Dipper and Kingfisher. Lunch is available at the Compton Inn.
Leader: Mike Landen
Tuesday 19 June – Velvet Bottom ST 505556 BS40 7XR Satnav 51.297990, -2.7107592
From Bristol, take the A38 south to Churchill, turn left at the traffic lights, first right up Burrington Combe, continue along and take the first turning on the right by Paywell Farm, then first left. (Share cars if possible please). Meet in the small car park at the end of the lane which runs alongside the Charterhouse Centre – not the centre car park itself. Approximately four miles, fairly hilly.
Leader: Geoff Harris
Tuesday 26 June – Hinton Blewitt & Litton Reservoirs ST 595569 BS39 5AN Satnav 51.310118, -2.582609
Meet in the small lay-by opposite the Ring O’ Bells in the village of Hinton Blewitt. Car share if possible as parking very limited. A four-mile walk mainly through fields and past the Litton Reservoirs. One short hill.
Leaders: Sue and John Prince
Sunday 01 July – Ubley Warren
Further details in next month’s Club News
Sunday 08 July - Marshfield
Meet at 09:00 at Marshfield on the A420 (ST 774738). Park in the layby on the south side of the Marshfield bypass near Tanners Close. The specialities of this area are Corn Bunting and Yellowhammer with the possibility of Grey Partridge and Quail.
Leader: Mike Jackson
All indoor meetings will be held at Newman Hall (Grange Court Road, Westbury-on-Trym, BS9 4DR) and start at 19:30, unless stated otherwise. They involve presentations and talks on a wide range of bird topics by both guest speakers and our own club members. Donations from non-members are appreciated!
Thursday 20 September with Terry Wall, “A Wall in Hungary and Bulgaria”
The attention of members is drawn to the fact that the Bristol Ornithological Club accepts no liability in respect of damage or personal injury occurring during its activities.