See also...

If you are interested in birds, you may also like to read what's on our Birds on Magog Down page.

Bird Club - come and join us!

If you have never given birdwatching a try do come along on the first Saturday of the month (meeting in the car park at 8am from April to October; slightly later at 8.30 am from November to March).

Membership is very informal–– just turn up and enjoy the birding walk. It is a healthy way of getting fresh air and exercise, and de-stressing while learning about birds.

We welcome new members of any age from beginners to life-time bird watchers. Sorry, no dogs

skylark_garth_cropped_250Photo: Skylark (Alauda arvensis) © Garth Peacock 2015

Bird Reports 2015 prev  :  next

Report of Stapleford Bird Club - November 2015

The weather forecast for Saturday 7th November was persistent rain and gusty winds – not good for birding – but it was still mainly dry when the group moved off, the strong wind being the worse aspect. 

The car park hedges held three robins, a blackbird, chaffinch and a Carrion Crow.  We remained within Youth Wood rather than venturing onto the exposed North Down, and noted some more of the same species and also a Magpie, and then at the top of the hill a buzzard flew past very low and making poor progress into the headwind. It was remarked that it seemed too small to be a buzzard and why not a crow?  In fact the bird had its wings angled in, the better to glide into the wind, giving it the appearance of a smaller species. Also, the largely brown plumage of the body and upper-wing, and a paler under-wing with a dark carpel patch, clinched the identification. 

A pheasant rose explosively from the arable winter bird-seed strip alongside Memorial Wood; and three birds of the other common game-bird – the red-legged Partridge or French partridge – were feeding in the stubble field.  Also in that field was a mixed flock of lesser black-backed and black-headed gulls. A flock of 23 starlings flew in close formation over Sheep Paddocks and 30 rooks and jackdaws were settled in the wheat-stubble field next to Feoffee’s Field.  By now it was very wet and gusty, yet a robin braved the elements to sing from the edge of Little Trees Hill.  Altogether, thirteen bird species were recorded, more than we expected to find!  woolly_thistle_scaled_180

During the walk we noted several plants of the woolly thistle (right), which was still in flower and is arguably the most striking of Britain’s native thistles.  It is a scarce species found mainly on dry ungrazed grassland over chalky soils, and Magog Down is one of the few sites in Cambridgeshire where it is to be found.      

Mike Foley

The next walk is on Saturday 5th December starting in the car park at 8.30am.
 

Birds on Magog Down

We publish the monthly reports of Stapleford Bird club here, plus other occasional bird-related articles; hot links in each report will take you to the RSPB information page for each bird spotted.

The gallery below shows a random six of the birds often seen on Magog Down.

  • Blackbird.jpg
  • Blackcap female.jpg
  • Blackcap male.jpg
  • Blue tit.jpg
  • Chaffinch.jpg
  • Chiffchaff.jpg