View Full Version : Hampshire birders!

Richard Ford
Tuesday 21st January 2003, 11:00
Where are you?

Well I thought I would kick of this section since no one from my county has contributed here yet.

Not really sure what to write, but hopefully others will join and generate some discussion. Please ;) !

Hampshire certainly has loads of birds and birders due to a good variety of habitats.
Extensive areas such as the New Forest which contain several nationally rare breeding species, and a huge array of commoner and not so common species, plus excellent coastal hot spots like Keyhaven/Pennington in the SW and Farlington Marshes in the SE of the county.

Rarities can turn up anywhere and often do.

Currently in the county
Regular wintering Ring-billed Gull at Broadmarsh, (near Farlington) also 3 Twite nearby.
If you are interested in Digiscoped photos, some of my pictures of the, RB Gull are here:

And here:

Several Great Grey Shrikes at various locations mostly in the New Forest.
To my knowledge only one Waxwing in the county so far and that seems to have gone.
And lots of other stuff I can't remember probably. Anyone care to add to this list?

There are between 300-400 people subscribed to Hoslist (Yahoo group, that complements the Website of the Hampshire Ornithological Society)
So perhaps some of them will be tempted to post here, as I am sure a few are members of the Forum.

Chat soon! :t:


(NE Hampshire birder)

Tuesday 21st January 2003, 11:25
Hi Rich

Im a member of hoslist and post when I come across something of interest. I must say that I really enjoy your photos. Some other birds about at the moment well theres a few Hen Harriers about in the New Forest. A Marsh Harrier at Tichfield Haven. Purple Sands at Southsea Castle.

All the Best

Martin Gillingham

Tuesday 21st January 2003, 11:39

I mustadmit that I don't bird Hampshire as much as I should do. I suppose my favourite site is Thursley. I love watching the Dartford Warblers there and have had excellent sightings of Common Crossbill and Hobby also. The collection of dragonflyes are also worth travelling for.

It is a nice site to walk around especially on a nice sunny summer day.

Keep us posted on what is around and if you can put some site info in the County by County indexes that would nelp any prospective visitors.

I have been to Farlington a few tiimes also but I must try and visit that area more often.

Richard Ford
Tuesday 21st January 2003, 12:59
Hi All

Thursley is just in Surrey and only a few miles from me.
For those who are interested there is a GG Shrike showing there on and off as well.
I have just started getting into Dragonflies, there are few pictures on my site several of which were taken at Thursley, which I gather is one of the top sites for Odonata in the south of England.

I find Thursley one of those places you can go and see nothing at all one day, and have amazing views of fantastic species like Hobby the next, over the years its turned up a lot of good birds. I once had a Black necked Grebe on that tiny little moat pond!



Tuesday 21st January 2003, 13:50
When I was in Surrey, I used to bird Hampshire quite a lot (and the Isle of Wight), as it had easy access by train (LSWR). I used to have a regular Jan 1 trip to Langstone Harbour, with lunch at the Ship before braving the Oyster Beds.


Richard Ford
Thursday 23rd January 2003, 16:34
Hi Hampshire Birders

On the subject of Tichfield Haven it sounds good at present with Bittern and Harriers, Barn owl etc.
Never been there though, what's the deal, don't you need permits or something?

I think thats whats put me off going, and its farther than I usually have time to travel, I tend to be a bit of a local patcher really, though I will happily twitch things more locally (anyone know if the twite are still present?).

I've only been to Keyhaven/Pennington once, and that just for a look around in the summer, hence I am probably the only Hampshire birder who hasn't seen, Stilt Sandpiper, Great spotted Cuckoo and American Golden Plover. Though I do wish I had gone for the Cuckoo.


Tuesday 4th February 2003, 14:21

You have to pay around 3 quid to enter the reserve and get access to the hides. But you can see into the reserve from the road or you can walk up the canal path along the west side of the reserve. Ive had good views of Bittern, Marsh Harrier and Barn Owl all from the outside. You can also do a spot of sea watching from the sea front. BTW the Twite are still at Southmoors near Farlington along with a Barn Owl.


Regards Martin

Richard Ford
Tuesday 4th February 2003, 18:55
Thanks martin

I had heard there was a Barn owl in the area via hoslist, I still haven’t seen the twite, but I may get the chance this weekend.
Had excellent views of Barn Owl and Distant views of Short Eared at the site in the north of the county at Dusk on Sunday night.

I am sure I will get to Tichfield one day!



Wednesday 12th February 2003, 09:19

I used to live in a flat in an Old rectory about 1/2 mile from the Langstone Harbour Reserve, I'd spend a lot of my freetime there with my hippy mates watching the birds, it wasn't a serious hobby then but it set me on the right track.

Used to go to the Ship Inn quite a bit too, me mum used to be cleaner there.

My favourite Birding site at present, is Fleet Pond, an excellent reserve for waterfowl, woodland birds, plants, and insects. Last week walking around with my Girlfriend and my youngest daughter we came across a deer in the udergrowth a mere 5 feet from the wooden walkway, he just stood there and stared at us until we moved on, he didn't appear at all worried with our presence. And before you wonder about the photograph, I had forgotten my camera that day!!!

Take care


Richard Ford
Wednesday 12th February 2003, 18:36
Hi Booga

You may already know this, but there is one possibly two bittern wintering at fleet pond.

If you view from chestnut grove it is often possible to see it perched up in the reeds opposite, pre roosting there before dusk.

Its a bit distant but I had great scope view up until dusk on sunday night (9th feb)

I managed this record shot.


Camberley red
Wednesday 12th February 2003, 20:35
I'm right on the border and bird the New Forest mainly, Fleet Pond is a regular haunt of mine during the late winter and early spring, also the Blackwater Valley (part Surrey part Hants). Happy to join the Hants chapter and perhaps a Hantsbash! Booga did you get the Farnborough Waxwings yesterday?

Look forward to meeting you all, I used to subscribe to Hantsbirds, to be honest, I thought it was one of the better local news groups.

Good birding


Thursday 13th February 2003, 07:44
Hi Rich, I Chatted to a couple of birders last Saturday who said about the bittern, they were more interested in the cormorants though.
That's a well nice pic mate, as you probably have gathered I'm really into my fishers, herons etc. I'll check it out this weekend. I love the Black Kite debate on Hoslist, the knowledge acumulated is amazing.

Hi Paul, Oh Thanks for the offer of the lift to kentbash by the way, much appreciated and I'm in basingstoke but could easily get to camberley! I heard about the waxwings by the blackwater roundabout on hoslist from Rich and possibly you if you are that paul in his message. Due to the lack of transport couldn't make it though. I'm in danger right now of making an impulsive scope purchase rather than testing out a range of them! I've only checked out the Mighty Midget II and the IF 75/45 MT so far but am desperate for one, I just get so jealous when I hear about everything I miss.

Take care


Richard Ford
Thursday 13th February 2003, 09:22
Hi Booga

I currently have 2 scopes for sale:
1 Viking 60mm (RSPB) with stay on case and 27XWA lens £150
1 Kowa Ts-611 20X WA lens and stay on case (angled scope) £200
I may sell my spare tripod also.

Let me know if you want more details.
We could meet somewhere local for some birding and exchange if you are interested.


Richard Ford
Thursday 13th February 2003, 10:02
Hi all

I love water birds too.
I think the Herons are perhaps my favourite group of birds, I would be much keener to twitch a purple Heron or any Egrets or a Stork, than I would something small and brown but rarer…..

Just outside Hants at Frensham (surrey) I had excellent though slightly distant views of the Great Grey Shrike there up until dusk on Monday night. The shrikes are one of my favourite groups of birds also.
I managed a couple of half-decent, record shots, I will post later.


Richard Ford
Thursday 13th February 2003, 18:41
@ Frensham common surrey, 10th Feb, dusk.


Camberley red
Thursday 13th February 2003, 19:21
Booga, check out Redwing's Kowa, a much better invesment than a mighty midgit in my opinion! Let me know if you're visiting Fleet Pond! only 5 miles away from me. We should sort out a Sunday soon, or wait for the Wood Warblers and Redstarts to return to the New Forest! or perhaps Richard knows a good spot?
Good luck


Camberley red
Thursday 13th February 2003, 19:28
I probably was that Paul, don't subscribe to Hoslist anymore but they check out Surreybirds I think!


Friday 14th February 2003, 08:34
Cheers Paul!

Rich, I'm definately up for checking out your scopes, after seeing your excellent results on your site and here I'm sure you would be a better help than the guy in the shop who just baffled me with jargon and then advised a tripod that was in a 'sale' for £120!

If we organise something soon, like paul says, a sunday would be good. I'd happily bow to your knowledge regarding locations too.



Richard Ford
Friday 14th February 2003, 08:54
I forwarded the waxwing message from Surrybirders to Hoslist.

I have only really visited Fleet a few times in the last few years mostly looking for bittern so I could do with a guided tour!

I have lived within a few miles of where I live now for over twenty years and I think my local knowledge is pretty good. I have birds within a few miles of my house some people travel to the New Forest for, Hawfinch, (hard to find though) GG Shrike etc. I know an Oak tree where a Lt Owl has just returned for its third year that kind of thing.
Why not arrange some kind off Hants meet and I will make it if I can, if we leave it 6+ weeks it would be a nice spring migration time but next weekend is a possibility also. I am only available alternate weekends.

We are lucky enough around here to be surrounded by heaths, we are approaching a great time for Dartford, Woodlark etc, or alternatively a coastal site like Farlington should be within reach of most.

I haven't birded the Basingstoke area at all really so I expect Booga has a few local secrets too. ;)
The Vyne sounds very interesting, good waders in migration time etc!

Booga we will have to arrange something then and you can have a look at both scopes, see what you think. :t:
Unfortunately I am unavailable this weekend.


Friday 14th February 2003, 09:39
When I lived in Surrey, Fleet Pond was one of my favourite areas - easy to get to by train (!), lots of different habitats, and good birds. Are the Mandarins still there ?


Richard Ford
Friday 14th February 2003, 10:33
I believe they do still occur.
But there are better places, I had a maximum of 60 on my local duck pond last winter, this year I haven't yet seen more than 30 there, but I have barley looked.

You can't go there without seeing one anyway!
Anyone who wants more details let me know.


Camberley red
Friday 14th February 2003, 10:38
TOny they are still there but a little shy.

Redwing, suggest a date for either Fleet Pond (a morning is best before the dog walkers and pushchairs!) or a Hawfinch search!! in the forest, are you free the 26th, which might be possible for me. We can meet at Fleet Station easily and do a 2 hour circuit or so there, Moor Green Lakes are nearby which can also be good.

I did find Hawfinches in the Beaulieu Rd Station area a few years ago, but have usually dipped due to lack of local knowledge (same with Firecrest sites?) since then.

I agree a nice spring day would be good fun looking for warblers etc.

Richard Ford
Friday 14th February 2003, 10:53
Fleet one spring morning sounds good to me.
26th of April is a Saturday, and at the moment I would not be free though with this much notice, I could be I am sure.
Booga, you would prefer a Sunday though would you?

Who else is up for it?


Richard Ford
Friday 14th February 2003, 11:02
Originally posted by Camberley red
We should sort out a Sunday soon, or wait for the Wood Warblers and Redstarts to return to the New Forest! or perhaps Richard knows a good spot?


There are Wood warbler and Redstart sites at this end of the county (NE) also, no problem seeing those when the time comes. Devil punch bowl at Hindhead, (just in surrey) Is good for Wood Warbler.


Friday 14th February 2003, 11:19
Yep guys a Sunday would be better for me as Saturdays are Generally devoted to Lizzie and Long dogwalks. I could, however, wrangle it if needs be. Don't worry I won't bring the dog birding, and if I did I'd make sure he stayed in his pushchair!!

Loud families at fleet pond do my head in but due to one large family of loud boys who scared off the redpolls I was watching from the bracket fungi observation deck as they passed they scared over towards me 3 nuthatces who I was able to observe from about 10 feet for 15 mins, karma payed off.

Carpenters down woods (10 mins from me on foot) is a brilliant habitat for all kinds of birds, consisting of deciduous, coniferous, marsh and scrub area. Firecrest have been spotted before. Good place for sparrowhawks too, probably due to the massive tit population. You'd be interested to know that I have seen Hawfinches here too Paul. Excellent for deer, fox and badger too if you like them.

Take care


Camberley red
Friday 14th February 2003, 12:05
Hello chaps I think I was looking at January on my Calendar! just set a date, early for winter stuff or April for migrants. Fleet Pond is OK between 06:00 and 09:00 at weekends usually and can be very good. No problems poping down to Basingstoke, never birded that area before, otherwise its the Forest and Keyhaven perhaps, which makes a good long day with plenty of variety. Just post a date.

I would be interested in a Hawfinch hunt at Carpenter's Wood Booga, are there Marsh and Willow Tit as well by any chance?

Redwing, I did't know about Wood Warbler at Hindhead, is that in Surrey or Hants, as I believe there were no sightings of the species in Surrey at all in 2002!

looking forward to a day or two out.


Friday 14th February 2003, 12:24
There are marsh and/or willow tits, sorry but my ability to tell the difference isn't too good at this stage. You can also find long-tailed, coal, blue and great-tits in various parts of the woods. I'm off there this afternoon so I'll try and locate, last time I saw a couple in an area of Beech trees. I'll work out a date soon.

Hindhead is in Surrey. The devils' punchbowl is an amazing place, I haven't been there since I started birding though so thanks for the tip Rich.


Richard Ford
Friday 14th February 2003, 16:37
Fleet pond - How about Sunday 23rd March
I am running low on free Sundays now.

I had at least two singing male wood warbler at the devils punch bowl (surrey), about 100m from the car park in the spring last year. I'm not sure of the exact date but it would have been mid april.


Camberley red
Friday 14th February 2003, 17:57
Its in the diary redwing. Thanks for the information on the Punch Bowl Wood Warblers, I'll try there this year, I must get to your wood booga, I'll drop you a private note for directions etc.



Wednesday 19th February 2003, 10:27
Hi Rich

Thanks for putting me onto this site via hoslist, I'm up for a Fleet Pond trip or wherever. I'm usually fairly flexible on dates


Richard Ford
Wednesday 19th February 2003, 11:10
Hi Martin

Welcome to Birdforum. :t:

I hope you have had a look around, there is loads of information on here about all kinds of Birds and wildlife, photography etc, from around the globe, the only trouble is keeping up with it all.

Where in Hants are you, it must be fairly near me?



Wednesday 19th February 2003, 11:42
Hey Rich

It's Martin Orchard-Webb, BTW, I've posted a reply to your Pagham trip on 5 Apl, - can't make it, as its HOS GGS count day. But as I'm in Grayshott, and (I think) you're in Whitehill, if you want to share a car to Fleet Pond/Pagham etc. then can do.

Any news from Woolmer - I haven't been down for 10 days.


Richard Ford
Wednesday 19th February 2003, 12:18
Hi again

Sorry couldn't tell exactly who it was.

Woolmer has been quiet recently though I expect thinks to hot up pretty soon.
There has been a Lesser Spot Woodpecker around though. I haven't popped in for a while myself.

Your right I am in Whitehill.


Wednesday 19th February 2003, 13:15
Hey guys, if you go to fleet pond give me a shout :)

BTW isn't hoslist getting off target with the all out war emerging? Over half of todays digest was insults and aruments, the irony being they are saying it should be for bird reports only (i agree) yet not really talking about birds!

Glad we got BF, if it was only Hoslist, I'd feel quite isolated.

Richard Ford
Wednesday 19th February 2003, 13:23
Yeah I agree its just getting bitchy and silly.
I must admit I have distanced myself from it a bit since I discovered BF.
Generally it's good though and I couldn't bring myself to Unsubscribe, though sometimes I feel like it.


Wednesday 19th February 2003, 15:49
Ogdens near fordingbridge 15/2/03
were the best birds
wood lark, redstart, whinchat, breed there
my best record here is raven last summer
its a nice walk, along the stream then right to the plantation
hope this is of some interest
the royal oak in north gorley is the best pub in the area

Wednesday 19th February 2003, 18:52
The SDBWS ( http://www.sdbws.ndo.co.uk/ ) have a coach trip to Keyhaven and Pennington Marshes on Sunday. Has anyone any recent sightings from this area, please ? Anyone in the area is welcome to join us for the day - if you see a well-dressed crowd clustered around a virile young man, you've found the wrong group! We should be down there about ten - ten-thirty.


peter hayes
Wednesday 19th February 2003, 19:04
Hi Guys

I'd also be interested if I can get to you okay. Which station do I need for Fleet from Westminster/Victoria area?


Wednesday 19th February 2003, 19:06
Waterloo - it's the Basingstoke train. Go to Fleet station, cross the car park and there is the Pond. Walk around it in a clockwise direction if it's sunny, as then the sun won't be in your eyes.


Richard Ford
Friday 21st February 2003, 09:17

Keyhaven/Pennington is one of the sites I should have visited, but I have only been once.
I can't recall what I have heard about, in the way of recent siting recently from there but I am sure there will be plenty of Waterfowl and waders and a good variety of species.

Let us know how it goes, and what you see.



Richard Ford
Friday 21st February 2003, 09:22

Looks like you have had some good records from an area I can't say that I know.

I certainly haven't seen Raven or Goshawk in Hants.
Though Ravens sighting are on the increase in the county, and they could be breeding.

Do you know if the Goshawk sightings are at all regular there?


Vectis Birder
Sunday 4th July 2004, 18:16
Hi, some interesting info there. I am a recent transplant from the Isle of Wight to Hampshire (Southampton), but have done a bit of birding in the New Forest and Titchfield Haven in the past.

Saturday 8th July 2006, 23:45
Is this still running?