Events

You don't need to be a member of the RSPB (or the local group) to enjoy our events, but we'd love you to join.

Please note that our usual programme of events has been suspended during the covid-19 pandemic. In the meantime, we are running a series of virtual talks instead of our usual indoor meetings. If you are not a member of the Exeter & District local group, you are very welcome to attend, but there is a small charge to help cover the costs of the talks. Please book your place by email, as shown on the relevant event description.

In our normal programme, we hold monthly illustrated talks on wildlife between September and April, at the Southernhay Hall of the United Reformed Church in central Exeter. We also run regular guided walks and other trips - birdwatching experience is not necessary.

We had planned to resume our face to face events early in 2021, starting with some birdwatching walks in January. However, with increasing covid-19 infections, we have decided to proceed with more caution and now hope to resume our regular walks in the Spring.

January 2021

Tue
26

Zoom Social Evening with the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: Zoom (if you haven't used Zoom before there is a simple guide on the front page of the Learn Devon website: www.learndevon.co.uk)

This social event will include a quiz (or two), the opportunity for you to put any questions to the committee and a cake competition! If you are a member of the Exeter & District local group, we will send you a Zoom invitation a few days beforehand. Otherwise, you are welcome to request an invitation from our Group Secretary, Richard Farr (ricfarr@gmail.com).

We would like to invite you to submit a couple of quiz questions which you can pose to other group members. This is by no means mandatory, but we hope you will enter into the spirit. The questions could be bird related, wider natural history, or even general knowledge. Please submit your questions (though not the answers!) in advance to Richard Farr, at ricfarr@gmail.com, by Friday 22nd. This will help us ensure we have enough questions to sustain the social event, and to group them thematically. We would like participants to ask their own questions, but if you really don't want to ask them yourselves, they could be read out for you. You will be asked to mute yourselves unless actually putting the questions to avoid giving away the answers.

We know that many of our members are keen on baking, so we are also going to include a Cake Competition. Unfortunately for the rest of us, it won't be possible to sample the entries. Instead, Cilla invites you to make and show us (via the camera on your phone or computer) a Lockdown cake or cupcake with a bird theme, and she has agreed to judge your creations!

We also hope to include an RSPB local group quiz based on a couple of the rounds from "Richard Osman's House of Games". Exactly what we will include in the social evening will depend on how things go on the day. We expect the event to finish by 9pm. This Zoom social is something of an experiment, so we ask you to bear with us if there are any problems. If it goes well, we will hold another social evening on a later occasion.

Time: 7.30 pm

Price: Free, but donations welcome

Booking essential

E-mail: ricfarr@gmail.com

Tue
26

CANCELLED - Morning walk to Matford Marsh & Riverside Valley Park with the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: *** THIS WALK HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED ***
Latitude/longitude: 50.694961,-3.500950 (Google map)

A walk in the lower Exe valley, within striking distance of the city centre. We will first visit Matford Marsh, where there are often good numbers of wigeon, teal and other ducks. We will then explore the Riverside Valley Park between Countess Wear and the Double Locks.
No toilets.

*** THIS WALK HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED ***

Time: 9.30 am

Price: Free to local group members, but donations welcome

Booking essential

E-mail: ExeterGroupLeader@rspb.org.uk

February 2021

Tue
9

'Farming and Wildlife', a virtual talk by Nicholas Watts to the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: via Zoom

Nicholas started recording the breeding birds on his farm in 1982. In 1992 he realised there had been a large decline of some species. This worried him so he decided to try and stop this decline and by chance Vine House Bird foods was created. Since 1992 there has been extensive habitat creation at Vine House Farm and Nicholas has won more awards for conservation on his farm than any other farmer in the UK. He has also received the MBE for his work.

This meeting is one of a series of Zoom talks, while our usual indoor meetings are suspended during the covid-19 pandemic. This talk will be just over an hour long, including time for questions.

Invitations to the talk will be emailed to local group members. If you are not a local group member, you are very welcome to request an invitation to join the Zoom meeting by emailing helen.baker60@tiscali.co.uk by 7th February. There is a £2 charge for non-members; payment instructions will be included with the invitation.

Time: 7.30 pm

Price: Exeter Local Group Members - free; all others £2.00

Booking essential

E-mail: helen.baker60@tiscali.co.uk

Sun
14

CANCELLED - Morning walk at Broadsands with the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: *** THIS WALK HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED ***
Latitude/longitude: 50.404839,-3.553249 (Google map)

One of the best places in the country to see cirl buntings. If the weather is favourable, the sea off Broadsands is very good for grebes and divers. The trees around the car park can also be a good place to see wintering goldcrests and warblers.
Car park charge; toilets by the seafront.

*** THIS WALK HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED ***

Time: 09.30 am

Price: Free to local group members, but donations welcome.

Booking essential

E-mail: ExeterGroupLeader@rspb.org.uk

Thu
25

CANCELLED - Morning walk at Stantyway, Otterton with the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: *** THIS WALK HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED ***
Latitude/longitude: 50.656343,-3.289872 (Google map)

This will be a circular walk, mainly for farmland birds, but also including views over the sea at Ladram Bay. We hope to see large flocks of finches, and it is also the best site for cirl buntings in East Devon. Please note that the paths will be muddy.
No toilets.

*** THIS WALK HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED ***

Time: 09.30 am

Price: Free to local group members, but donations welcome.

Booking essential

E-mail: ExeterGroupLeader@rspb.org.uk

March 2021

Tue
9

'Return of the Red Kite', a virtual talk by Keith Betton to the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: via Zoom.

The Red Kite is a fascinating and agile bird of prey with an amazing ability to steal food from other birds. There was a time when they were extremely rare birds in Britain. Thanks to a reintroduction programme they are now back - and thriving in places. Keith Betton has studied these fantastic birds in detail. He tells us about their return and what the prospects are for more of them heading our way.

Keith Betton is Chairman of the Hampshire Ornithological Society, and the County Bird Recorder for Hampshire. He is also an author of books about birdwatching.

This meeting is one of a series of Zoom talks, while our usual indoor meetings are suspended during the covid-19 pandemic. This talk will be just over an hour long, including time for questions.

Invitations to the talk will be emailed to local group members. If you are not a local group member, you are very welcome to request an invitation to join the Zoom meeting by emailing helen.baker60@tiscali.co.uk by 7th March. There is a £2 charge for non-members; payment instructions will be included with the invitation.

Time: 7.30 pm

Price: Exeter Local Group Members - free; all others £2.00

Booking essential

E-mail: helen.baker60@tiscali.co.uk

April 2021

Tue
13

'Saving a species from extinction in the UK', a virtual talk by Dr Jen Smart to the Exeter & District Local Group

Location: via Zoom

Breeding waders are in serious decline and there are some really big challenges in trying to reverse these declines. Jen begins by outlining the problems faced by breeding waders, our evidence for these problems and the sort of solutions we have to improve their conservation prospects. Jen will then use the example of the black-tailed godwit to show how we use an evidence-based approach to try to save this beautiful species from extinction as a breeding species in the UK.

This meeting is one of a series of Zoom talks, while our usual indoor meetings are suspended during the covid-19 pandemic. This talk will be just over an hour long, including time for questions.

Invitations to the talk will be emailed to local group members. If you are not a local group member, you are very welcome to request an invitation to join the Zoom meeting by emailing helen.baker60@tiscali.co.uk by 11th April. There is a £2 charge for non-members; payment instructions will be included with the invitation.

Time: 7.30 pm

Price: Exeter Local Group Members - free; all others £2.00

Booking essential

E-mail: helen.baker60@tiscali.co.uk