Headline news


Tubular water-dropwort in Gloucestershire

As part of our HLF funded pond monitoring project PondNet, Freshwater Habitats Trust are seeking records of a number of declining wetland plant species including Tubular water-dropwort Oenanthe fistulosa from counties across England and Wales http://freshwaterhabitats.org.uk/projects/pondnet/twd-gwp-2017/ this is to update current records, and where possible set up (long term) structured monitoring at ponds in each county.

We have two different ways of recording the plant; either a very basic rapid assessment form which can be used on any habitat type: http://freshwaterhabitats.org.uk/projects/pondnet/twd-gwp-2017/recording-twd-gwp-other-habitats/ Or, a more detailed survey if the species is found at a pond (this is our priority): http://freshwaterhabitats.org.uk/projects/pondnet/twd-gwp-2017/recording-twd-gwp-in-ponds/

Have you or members of your organisation seen this species in Gloucestershire recently? If so, would you be willing to share the record with us? All data gathered will be made available to local and national records centres. GCER have kindly provided the records they hold, unsurprisingly most of which are from the floodplain of the Severn in wet meadows and ditches. We are particularly interested in finding ponds where tubular water-dropwort is still growing from anywhere in the county – any info you have would be appreciated.

If you are interested in helping to revisit a site where the species has been recorded in the past to complete a survey, please let me know and I will attempt to find you a local site.

Best wishes,
Pete Case
Regional Officer for Central England
People Ponds and Water
Email: pcase@freshwaterhabitats.org.uk
Mobile: 07703 808520
Twitter: @peterbcase
Web: www.freshwaterhabitats.org.uk


New Curlew conservation website – www.curlewcall.org

As noted in several recent issues of GNS NEWS, much attention has been devoted in recent years to Curlews in Gloucestershire, both wintering birds on the Severn Estuary, and breeding birds in the Severn and Avon Vales. This reflects a wider interest in Curlews and a growing realisation (throughout UK, and indeed internationally) that the Eurasian Curlew has undergone a sharp decrease in numbers in recent years. Much of the interest in the UK has been devoted to birds breeding in upland sites in northern England, Scotland and Northern Ireland; but appreciable numbers continue to breed across lowland southern England too, and should not be neglected: a workshop devoted to this topic was held in Slimbridge in February 2017, and now a website on this topic (with much support from GNS) has been established at www.curlewcall.org. Do take a look and add your comments.

 


National Meadows Day – 1st July 2017

National Meadows Day

Celebration
Saturday July 1st 2017 from 10:30
at the
Angus Buchanan Recreation Ground
Victoria Rd, Coleford, GL16 8DS

National Meadows Day celebrates the wildflowers and wildlife in traditional meadows and grassland. Open from 10:30AM to 3:30PM there will be guided walks at 11:00 and 2:00 with specialists on hand to help identify flowers and insects. From 1:00 to 2:00PM you can get expert advice on how best to photograph wildflowers.

The walks are free and all are welcome, please wear sensible shoes or trainers. There is plenty of free parking.

Dean Meadows Group
www.deanmeadows.org.uk


Birds of Prey Day at John Moore Museum – Saturday 11 February

A Live Animal Event for February half-term week

John Moore Museum
Saturday 11th February 2017
10am to 1pm & 2pm to 5pm
John Moore Museum, 41 Church Street, Tewkesbury, GL20 5SN
For the start of Half Term week in Gloucestershire, the museum welcomes back J.R.C.S Falconry who will be bringing along a selection of birds of prey from their extensive collection.

Visit us to meet a Golden Eagle, a Hooded Vulture, an Eagle Owl, a Little Owl, an American Kestrel and a Barn Owl.  An opportunity to see birds of prey, from some of the largest to the smallest.

A falconer will be on hand to answer all your questions about these amazing birds as well as on the ancient art of falconry.

Admission: Adult: £3.50, Seniors & Students £3.00, Children £1.50

Contact: Simon Lawton (Curator)
E-Mail: curator@johnmooremuseum.org
Website: www.johnmooremuseum.org
Telephone: 01684 297174

Forthcoming Meetings

The next two scheduled GNS Field Meetings are –

GNS Outdoor Meeting Sunday 22nd January – A visit to Forthampton & Lower Lode, General Interest to be led by Mike Smart (01452 421131) – meet at 10.00 am until 12.30. Meet in front of the Lower Lode Inn (SO 878 317) on the west bank of the Severn (opposite side from Tewkesbury), access past Forthampton Court on the unclassified road off the A438 west of Tewkesbury. Please dress appropriately for the weather, good boots or wellingtons will be necessary.

GNS Outdoor Meeting Saturday 4th FebruaryWinter Wildfowl at Cotswold Water Park to be led by Ken Cservenka (01285 656480). Meet at Neigh Bridge Car Park, SU 017 946, 10.00am to 12.00 mid-day. Come along for a wander in the CWP in search of winter wildfowl, other winter birds and whatever else we can find – Please dress appropriately for the weather, good boots or wellingtons will be necessary.


Forthcoming Meetings – January 2017

There are several GNS meetings in the coming few weeks –

GNS Indoor Meeting Friday 13th January

The next GNS Indoor Meeting is due to take place on Friday 13th January 2017 at Watermoor Church Hall, Cirencester, GL7 1JR; 7.00 for 7.30 pm – the subject of the meeting being Gloucestershire Raptor Monitoring Group to be presented by Andrew Bluett. Come and see a presentation detailing the voluntary work of GRMG and have a chance to learn more about birds of prey and owls in Gloucestershire and beyond.

GNS Outdoor Meeting Sunday 15th January

A visit to Walmore Common, of General interest but also in search of wetland and winter birds to be led by Andrew Jayne (01452 506502 / 07919 278806) – meet at 9.30 am in the lay-by at Walmore Hill School, SO 747 145, the meeting will last until 12.00 mid-day. A rare chance to visit this area of wetland and meadows with a very knowledgeable guide. Please dress appropriately for the weather, wellingtons will be necessary.

GNS Outdoor Meeting Sunday 22nd January

A visit to Forthampton & Lower Lode, General Interest to be led by Mike Smart (01452 421131) – meet at 10.00 am until 12.30. Meet in front of the Lower Lode Inn (SO 878 317) on the west bank of the Severn (opposite side from Tewkesbury), access past Forthampton Court on the unclassified road off the A438 west of Tewkesbury. Please dress appropriately for the weather, good boots or wellingtons will be necessary.

Indoor Meeting – Wednesday 25th January

Gloucestershire Raptor Monitoring Group are holding an indoor meeting on Wednesday 25th January at Ribston Hall High School off Stroud Road, Gloucester, GL1 5LE, 7.00 for 7.30pm.

Barn Owls, with Colin Shawyer – Colin is a raptor biologist and professional ecologist specialising in birds, mainly birds of prey and has published widely on this subject. He was Director of the Hawk and Owl Trust between 1988 and 1998. He undertook work for the BTO between 2000 and 2010 developing and implementing its Barn Owl Monitoring Programme and in 1988 founded the Barn Owl Conservation Network (BOCN); he is BOCN Coordinator for UK and Ireland. He oversees and undertakes extensive Barn Owl nest monitoring every season.

Tickets are still available via the GRMG web-site at https://glosraptors.co.uk/shop/

Details of all forthcoming meetings are available on the GNS Web-Site together with a map & directions for Watermoor Church Hallwww.glosnats.org/diary/

 


Avian Influenza (H5N8) “Bird Flu” UPDATE 5th January

Further to the post on the subject of Avian Influenza a few days ago, inevitably there have been more cases / outbreaks in the UK already, notably in Carmarthenshire and elsewhere. There are exclusion zones in place and specific rules relating to domestic birds.

For the best and most up-to-date information – please refer to the DEFRA web-site at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/avian-influenza-bird-flu

If you find a dead bird be very careful about handling it, H5N8 is not normally a risk to humans but do not take any chances… and do not risk transmitting it to any other birds, please see the guidance and notes at the same DEFRA web site and on the BTO web-site.