News archive

July 2016

Sunday, 3 July 2016

RSPB Medway Local Group Year List - 184 birds and still counting

RSPB Medway Local Group Year List - 184 birds and still counting

Sue continues to put together an exciting and varied itinerary for outdoor walks in Kent on Wednesdays and Sundays throughout the year, which are free for all and you don't even have to be a member of the RSPB to take part. Highlights so far include Rock Pipit and Black Redstart at Samphire Hoe; Garganey and Little Ringed Plover at Sevenoaks; Goldeneye at Dungeness; Hen Harrier at Oare; Slavonian Grebe at Cliffe Pools and White-fronted Geese at Swale NNR.

Wendy continues to champion our coach trips which took us to Rutland Water in spring where we added Osprey and Black Tern.

Richard continues to provide value for money birdwatching holidays for birders on a budget that broadened our year list to include Common Crane, Dipper, Great Grey Shrike, Goshawk, Hawfinch, Mandarin, Raven and Red Kite in Wales; Bittern, Bearded Tit, Dartford Warbler, Little Tern, Nightjar and Woodcock in Norfolk; and Bluethroat, White Stork, Spoonbill, Black-winged Stilt, Short-toed Treecreeper, Black-necked Grebe and Ring Ouzel just across The Channel in northern France.

Looking ahead to the second half of the year we've got a coach trip planned to Minsmere; Bargain Birding Club holidays to France, Spain and Norfolk; and free outdoor field trips to Rye Harbour, Sandwich Bay, Broadwater Warren, Elmley, Shellness, Dungeness, Mote Park, Northward Hill, Bough Beech and Bedgebury Pinetum amongst others.

Why not join us for the second half of 2016. We're a friendly bunch and always happy to make new members feel welcome and looked after. Checkout our Events page to find out more.

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Saturday, 2 July 2016

July Bird of the Month - European Nightjar

July Bird of the Month - European Nightjar

The plumage is both beautiful and cryptic and the male has white corners to the long tail and white spots near his wing tips which are flashed during display flights. When resting on branches the nightjar perches lengthwise and is very hard to detect. In flight it can easily be mistaken for a falcon and wing claps form part of the courtship display.

The call is normally only heard during the breeding season and is a frog-like coo-ic. The song is an amazing mechanical sounding churring which varies in pitch as the bird turns its head from side to side and can be heard at a distance of 1 kilometre. Once heard never forgotten!

This wonderful bird used to rejoice in the name of goatsucker as our forebears believed that it used to milk goats with its huge mouth.

Come September, the nightjar will be returning to Africa,so for your opportunity to be mesmerised join Trevor Hatton's walk on Saturday 9th July or visit Broadwater Warren at dusk.

To find out more about this declining species click on the link below which plays a short video by the BTO and features celebrity birder David Lindo and he attempts to get close to Nightjars in Thetford Forest.

There's also a fact sheet to download from Kent CC showing the distribution of Nightjars throughout the county.

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