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KB57's 2019 list (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
My aims for 2019 are very simple: try and work a little less and get out birding a little more. I don't have any big trips planned, so am not anticipating significant additions to my life list, nor will I aim for particularly targeted additions to my year list. I just want to enjoy birds more frequently than in 2018.
That said, it would've been nice to start the year off well. Laid low with a bug, it wasn't to be - all I could manage was a quick walk round a country park not far from my partner's new place near Newcastle, and a visit to the chemists.
To add insult to injury, I had to go into the office due to a looming deadline, although that wasn't without its rewards in a birding sense...so

Jan 1st, somewhere near Newcastle on Tyne...

1. Eurasian Magpie
2. Dunnock
3. Common Wood Pigeon
4. Common Blackbird
5. Eurasian Bullfinch
6. Eurasian Blue Tit
7. European Greenfinch
8. Eurasian Wren
9. European Goldfinch
10. Eurasian Tree Sparrow
11. Mute Swan
12. Mallard
13. Yellowhammer
14. Carrion Crow
15. European Robin
16. Great Tit
17. Common Chaffinch
18. Long-tailed Tit
19. Coal Tit
20. Western Jackdaw
21. Black-headed Gull
22. European Herring Gull
23. White Wagtail (ssp. yarrellii)

Co. Durham (office)
24. Common Moorhen
(driving home)
25. Tawny Owl

So, a late night in the office rewarded by a tawny owl. Finding a feeding station with lots of tree sparrows was pretty good too, while I had to go to Lithuania for my first yellowhammer of 2018, so despite everything, not a terrible start!


Well-known member
2nd Jan, Co. Durham (garden)

26. Great Spotted Woodpecker
27. House Sparrow
28. Common Starling

(journey to work)
29. Common Pheasant

30. Eurasian Coot
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Well-known member
3rd Jan, Co. Durham (work)

Having an alder tree outside the office window has its advantages, occasionally bringing in a small flock of siskins.

31. Eurasian Siskin

A more distant, larger flock in adjoining woodland required setting up the scope and tripod in the office to confirm ID. Not helping to finish my report, but after the siskins this was #1 on my list of likely 'year ticks from office window' (although I had missed a flypast goosander earlier)

32. Lesser Redpoll
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Well-known member
8th January, Le Grand Bornand, France

Short ski break staying in a valley town with my son and I taking turns to drive to a different resort each day. My turn to be a passenger this morning, as we drove by a mountain river, adding dipper to my list.
As I've said before on BF, sliding downhill at speed and birding don't usually mix; also, in previous trips to this area of the northern Alps I haven't generally seen very much apart from ravens. This time was better...

33. White-throated Dipper
34. Alpine Chough

Cluses, France

35. Common Kestrel


Well-known member
9th January, Megeve, France

A tight flock of small finches seen from a chairlift...Citril Finches??? Too far away to tell without binoculars. A group of crossbills feeding on spruce cones stopped me in my tracks a short while later.

36. Red Crossbill
37. Northern Raven


Well-known member
10th January, Les Contamines-Montjoie, France

The disadvantage of downhill skiing is that you sometimes end up having to trudge uphill when you run out of momentum. In an icy wind with spindrift it isn't very pleasant...however, it does give you time to notice a couple of birds flying off from a deserted restaurant terrace and traverse over for a closer look. They flew back and fed a few feet away from me, providing possibly a stronger contender for Bird of the Month than anything I'm likely to see if when I actually try and go birding...

38. White-winged Snowfinch


Well-known member
11th January, north Northumberland (Newham Fen area)

Seen from the train travelling from Edinburgh to Newcastle

39. Rook
40. Pink-footed Goose


Well-known member
13th January.

Had to catch the ferry to Holland with the car today, sadly due to an unexpected bereavement, but managed a quick tour of a few Northumberland coastal sites first, accompanied by a very strong wind.


41. Eurasian Curlew

Cresswell Pond

42. Eurasian Wigeon
43. Common Goldeneye
44. Eurasian Teal
45. Eurasian Sparrowhawk

Druridge Pools

46. Red-breasted Merganser
47. Gadwall
48. Little Grebe
49. Tufted Duck

Hauxley / west of A189
Stopped to look at a flock of pinkfeet in the bus stop*, view from car interrupted by hedge, when a bean goose walked past our field of view. Looked noticeably bigger than pinkfeet (therefore Taiga was my thought) but beak was very dark and Tundra-like; both would be 'lifers' for me, therefore zero previous experience and reluctant to make the call with no photo to get second opinion with, so...

Bean Goose sp. (initially decided to give it a number, as it is clearly a unique taxon for the year - then changed my mind, but it won't go on my life list)

(Common Kestrel - UK list)
50. Grey Heron
51. Great Cormorant
Plus much better views of goldeneye and red-breasted merganser, but unusually no goosanders

Hauxley nature reserve (just a coffee stop)
52. Canada Goose
53. Greylag Goose

*Less ambiguously: 'stopped in the bus stop to look at a flock of pinkfeet in the adjacent field to the west of the A189'
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Well-known member
14th January, IJmuiden, Holland

Sailing into harbour

54. Great Black-backed Gull
55. Common Scoter
56. Mew Gull
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Well-known member
17th January, River Tyne near South Shields

57. Common Eider

18th January, Co. Durham

58. Eurasian Collared Dove
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Well-known member
20th January: Teesmouth
First stop Zinc Works Road, where I was hoping for some more definitive bean geese; as the latest Twitter report was from 13th, my worst fears were confirmed as we drew a blank. Some compensation, however, in the form of one of apparently three SEOs flying around.

59. Short-eared Owl

On to Saltholme:

60. Northern Lapwing
61. Barnacle Goose (introduced population, not entirely happy about ticking this...)
62. Meadow Pipit
63. Northern Shoveler
64. Long-eared Owl
65. Common Pochard
66. European Stonechat
67. Common Reed Bunting
68. Stock Dove
69. Fieldfare

Happy to be able to find one of the LEOs in the scrub and point it out to other visitors. Ended the day with another SEO near the Saltholme entrance road. Massive flock of lapwings distantly overhead, and seen lots of curlews on what has so far been a virtually wader-free year...concentrated on owls and only visited one hide at Saltholme - my year list should move on nicely when I finally get round to visiting suitable coastal habitats.

21st Jan, Co. Durham

70. Eurasian Jay
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Well-known member
23rd Jan, nr. Preston, Lancashire

Work trip added one species, which in my experience is somewhat thin on the ground in winter in NE England

71. Song Thrush
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27th Jan, Newbiggin-by-the-Sea, Northumberland

After spending an hour in the warm doing the RSPB garden birdwatch, I thought the strong NW winds might bring in something interesting, and we headed for the coast.
My attempted seawatch in driving rain lasted all of ten minutes, bringing back memories of early stage clifftop hypothermia in my youth (where I once got cold enough to start feeling warm...). If anyone was going to see a little auk today, it wasn't going to be me!
My dearth of waders so far this year did mean a few additions to the year list though.

72. Eurasian Oystercatcher
73. Ruddy Turnstone
74. Common Ringed Plover
75. Common Redshank
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Well-known member
3rd February, Newcastle on Tyne

Didn't manage to get out birding this weekend, but got my culture fix on Tyneside with trip to Newcastle and the Baltic art gallery in Gateshead. One of the installations is a large darkened room smelling of bird poo, with rave music, a giant cat image, video art and an old silo, amongst other things. There are monitors around the side of the room with trailcam footage from the Baltic's kittiwake colony. You download an app, point your phone at the monitors, and you get to hear the kittiwakes calling.
It's too early to see actual kittiwakes at the Baltic, so I only had one addition to the year list - amazingly, the first 'proper' urban feral pigeons I've noticed this year, as opposed to 'farm pigeons', or racing pigeons being exercised.

76. Rock Dove (f. domestica)
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16th February

Still not had much time to get out birding this year, very frustrating as I try and clear a backlog of work and domestic chores. Travel through a red kite reintroduction area and a short walk in a Tyneside country park added two more species.

Rowland's Gill, Gateshead

77. Red Kite

Weetslade country park, North Tyneside

78. Little Egret
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22nd February, near Preston, Lancs.

Started the day at home watching a GS woodpecker on a feeder, before heading for Lancashire..much more satisfying to watch one drumming in a woodland, making a huge noise on a partly decayed ash tree. Flushed a woodcock, and finally (after hearing them calling all day) got a decent view of a nuthatch.

79. Common Buzzard
80. Eurasian Woodcock
81. Eurasian Nuthatch
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27th February, Aberlady Bay

Welcome couple of days off work, with an overnighter to SE Scotland to do one of our favourite walks - Aberlady Bay to Gullane Bay. The normally (in my experience) reliable velvet scoters weren't around, as far as I could tell with the scope, although dead-calm conditions means a lot of the sea duck flocks seemed to be well offshore. Just lots of common scoter and eider, plus a few other species.

82. Common Shelduck
83. Eurasian Skylark
84. Red-throated Loon
85. Razorbill
86. Long-tailed Duck
87. Common Linnet

28th February, Gullane Bay

Another beautiful warm day with calm seas, several Slavonian grebes in the bay, including a couple that seemed to be showing some early signs of courtship behaviour, despite winter plumage. More good views of razorbills and red-breasted mergansers; at one point the scoter flock was disturbed by a fishing boat and flew east for a short distance, confirming the absence of velvets in this part of the coast today. Fieldfares also notable by their absence in the buckthorn scrub; we had a look for blackcaps too without success, having seen a couple here in the past.

88. Horned Grebe
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10th March, Bogota, Colombia

Taxi journey from the airport to my hotel

89. Great Thrush
90. Eared Dove
(Feral Pigeon - Colombia list)

As I'm currently doing a trip report on my Colombia journey, I'm saying a little less about each species than usual here.
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11th March - first full day in Colombia, and indeed South America

Near Guasca, Colombia
Just getting light on my way to Bio-Andina cloud forest with Oswaldo Cortes from Bogotabirding
91. Black Vulture

Bio-Andina Cloud Forest, near Guasca
92. Longuemare's Sunangel
93. Sparkling Violetear
94. Tyrian Metaltail
95. Grey-breasted Wood Wren
96. Mountain Elaenia
97. Black-crested Warbler
98. Bluish Flowerpiercer
99. White-sided Flowerpiercer
100. Pale-naped Brushfinch
101. Slaty Brushfinch
102. White-throated Tyrannulet
Rufous Antpitta (eastern Andes form: heard-only)
103. White-banded Tyrannulet
Pale-bellied Tapaculo (heard only)
104. Scarlet-bellied Mountain Tanager
105. Golden-fronted Whitestart
106. Cinnamon Flycatcher
107. Blackburnian Warbler
108. Black-billed Mountain Toucan
109. Eastern Meadowlark
110. Flame-winged Parakeet
(Powerful Woodpecker - flight view, not countable)
111. Northern Mountain Cacique
112. Andean Teal
113. Whistling Heron

Lunch stop near La Calera
114. Crimson-mantled Woodpecker

Observatorio Colibries near La Calera
115. White-bellied Woodstar
116. Rufous-collared Sparrow
117. Blue-throated Starfrontlet
118. Black Flowerpiercer
119. Copper-bellied Puffleg
120. Black-tailed Trainbearer
121. Green-tailed Trainbearer
122. Glowing Puffleg
123. Sparkling Violetear
124. Great Sapphirewing
125. Sword-billed Hummingbird
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12th March: Medellin - city airport and Terminal del Sur bus station

126. Bare-faced Ibis
127. Ruddy Ground Dove
128. Southern Lapwing
129. Southern Rough-winged Swallow

Jardin - riverside
130. Bananaquit
131. Blue-grey Tanager
132. Red-headed Barbet
133. Palm Tanager
134. American Yellow Warbler
135. Green Honeycreeper
136. Flame-rumped Tanager
137. Rose-breasted Grosbeak
138. Squirrel Cuckoo
139. Tropical Kingbird
140. Andean Cock-of-the-rock
141. Blue-and-white Swallow
142. Broad-winged Hawk
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