Saturday, 24 January 2009


On the advice of Andrew at Border Riever blogspot we went up to Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust on the banks of the River Seven in Gloucestershire to see what we could see. My sidebar list of birds has grown by 15, taking the total up to 50, so halfway to my 100 goal! It is a lovely place and we only just fitted everything in during our time there. This top picture is from one of the hides looking over the river and on the other side is the Forest of Dean. You can see that there are a lot of birds to see, it's quite overwhelming.
I loved these two , a blue tit and a long tailed tit, they look as if they are chatting. I almost liked the woodland bird feeders more than the water birds.

And finally....we saw alot of "proper birders" with all their equipment gathering at the end of the day and it was obvious they were waiting for something, was the world about to explode or was the Queen about to walk by?. I thought I'd hang around too and as luck would have it a guide came along with a party of birders and I shamelessly tagged along and saw the most fantastic gathering of Starlings, thousands of them doing an amazing dance in the sky for quite a while before they dropped down to roost in the reeds. A lovely day, I didn't count the birds in the enclosures as that felt like cheating!
One thing puzzles me, the place is divided up into different areas with birds from different country's in the enclosures, do they stop them from flying over the fence into the wrong bit? They had alot of gates but these are flying creatures! I'm obviously missing something and they didn't appear to have their wings clipped.
Tomorrow I will do the RSPB garden watch for an hour, I'm not expecting to see much.


Lavender hearts said...

Hiya, thanks for visiting. I live in Danehill so know Horsted Keynes all too well. I particularly love this part of Sussex. I don't know when that photo was taken, I'm guessing 1890ish. we said when we looked around the house - please leave the photo and the previous owners did. I've since found a picture of our house from the 1920s on ebay. I just love knowing the history of places, it's so interesting!

Eco Gites of Lenault said...

I did my own version of the RSPB BirdWatch this morning and saw a measly 8 species. It was freezing cold and drizzling so I think the birds were all hiding in any sheltered spot they could find. Not even some tasty morsels on the bird table could tempt them out.

Rosie x

Mary said...

Looks like you had a wonderful experience there!

Tricia said...

It's ages since I went to Slimbridge - but it's a bit too far for me in a day.

It looks as though you had a good visit Goosey and to witness the Starling "ballet" first hand - Wow!

Tricia said...

Meant to say. I believe the Collection birds have a wing "pinned" (or something similar) to stop them flying.

Goosey said...

Thanks Tricia, it's been puzzling me ever since and I couldn't believe they would clip their wings.

Andrew at Quicksilverbirds said...

Hi Goosey, how wonderful you made it to Slimbridge and added another 15 species to your year list. I'm glad you had a good day, always a worry recommending something and then once someone goes it's a dissapointment. My next recommendation is Bowling Green Marsh and Exmouth area. Well worth it for the winter birds.

As for the collections, they do have their wings clipped, hard to see but if you look at their primaries, they're shortened. That's why they don't fly between enclosures. Starlings looked amazing.