Compared to most recent years, when for example I recorded 165 species in the county in 2011, 187 in 2012 and 173 in 2013, this has been a particularly poor one with just 157 species recorded by mid December - one of my worst years on record


It's all over - 2012 has come to an end. I managed a total of 187 out of the 198 species recorded all told in Buckinghamshire - 94% of the total - probably my highest-ever annual tally.

The current record is 191 species achieved in 2006 and held jointly by both Rob Hill and Simon Nichols

Friday, 24 April 2009

SHORT-EARED OWL at Stowe this evening

A distant bird being harried by a corvid caught my eye and at first glance I thought it was a Barn Owl. However when I got the 'scope on it I could see that it was not a Barn Owl but a SHORT-EARED OWL. It dropped out of sight and didn't reappear, so I jumped in the car and drove to where it appeared to have gone down. Fortunately I judged it right and as I squeezed through a gap in the hedge I could see it sitting on a fence post 100m away. I watched it through the 'scope for about 20 seconds, before it took off and started quartering the ground along the fence line. It then turned and flew back and over a ridge and I lost it and unfortunately wasn't able to re-locate it. I will obviously look out for it tomorrow, but I suspect it was moving through--it was heading north when I last saw it--though I am not sure whether SEO's migrate at night??

Interestingly it was not far from Bycell Farm where a Hen Harrier was seen recently-perhaps this is the new owl and raptor hot-spot!

More importantly for me, a great addition to the garden list!! (Phil Tizzard)