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

Long-term Survey of Breeding Birds

In February 2012, Bryan Davies and Robin Cox of Cambridgeshire Bird Club proposed a long term breeding bird survey on Magog Down.

Full reports of the first six years of this survey can be found here:

2017 Report

2016 Report

2015 Report

2014 Report

2013 Report

2012 Report

Bird Club first Saturday meetings under review

The monthly meetings of the Stapleford Bird Club have not taken place since March 2020, because of the Covid-19 epidemic. The walk leader has continued to visit most months, and his reports can be read under our News section.  He hopes to be able to take a group round again before too much longer.

Follow us on Twitter for the latest updates.

Bird Reports 2019 prev  :  next

Report of Stapleford Bird Club - March 2019

The morning started on a calm note and was overcast, which made it easier to check for birds high up in trees or flying by. The car park area had plenty of birdlife – singing birds included a Robin, Chaffinch, Song Thrush, Woodpigeon, two Dunnocks and a Great Tit. We also heard Greenfinches making their typical drawn out wheezy call and tinkling Goldfinches. Blue Tits were active, a Magpie was pecking at some food on the ground, a Blackbird appeared briefly, and party of Long-tailed Tits were busily feeding, as were two Jays seemingly oblivious to our presence. The Jays raised the total of species found in the past few weeks along just one hedgerow by the car park to eighteen.  We also saw three Bramblings together – two brightly plumaged males and a female.

Shortly after walking out on to the North Down we noted a Meadow Pipit, Reed Bunting and a Stonechat. Only two Skylarks were singing today (three were heard last month) which shows it takes patience and repeated visits to properly count how many Skylark territories there really are in an area. On some early summer walks we have noted a “Mexican wave” effect: one Skylark takes to the air to proclaim its territory then others follow on one after the other, until it seems the entire male population in the field is on the wing.  We will have a more accurate number of singing males by July. A Lesser Black-backed Gull flew over and a Buzzard flying distantly over Wandlebury momentarily moved over into our airspace.  A Goldfinch called near Magog Wood and in the wood itself a second Song Thrush was singing, and yet another sang out from Little Trees Hill. We disturbed two Grey (English) Partridges close to the footpath on Colin’s Bank, which was unusual as these are masters at hiding or flying away well before anyone approaches, and another four birds were very vocal on Feoffee’s Fields.  In the Sheep Paddocks, fourteen Magpies was the largest flock we have seen at this time of day, 35 Starlings were feeding, two Skylarks were singing and a Green Woodpecker was calling nearby.  During our stroll down to Vestey Wood we encountered a Robin, Dunnock and two Yellowhammers all in the perimeter hedge, which we noticed has undergone some fairly strong trimming to restore it and to encourage regeneration.

Viewed from the perimeter footpath next to Memorial Wood, we noticed that the long field strip of seed-bearing plants for winter bird feeding was still attracting hungry, small birds including 25 Linnets. A Long-tailed tit was seen in the adjacent wood.  While we were watching a hare, crouched and motionless, on the tilled land next to the seed strip, what we first thought was a clod of soil next to it moved slightly – two hares! 

Altogether 25 bird species were seen.

    Mike Foley

View the sightings for March 2019 as a table

March 2019

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 selection of the birds that have been seen on Magog Down.

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