See also:
Bird Watching 1
Start time varies - Third Monday of the month
Varied locations in and around Bath and further afield
Photo of Lucy.jpg

NOTE: The group is full and has a waiting list.
It may be possible to start a third bird watching group, please contact the Convenor if you'd be interested

Lucy, our convenor, writes:

“Because of a waiting list in Bird Watching Group 1 and the level of interest of other members wishing to join, I was asked to set up a second group, which had its first meeting in August 2016. We operate in a similar way to Group 1, with full and half−day meetings, visiting localities in or close to Bath but more often up to about 50 miles distant, when we would take a picnic lunch.

I aim to visit a wide variety of habitats during the 12−month programme, with eleven outings and a social lunch and get−together in July. One of my favourite locations is the Somerset Levels, in particular Ham Wall RSPB reserve where, in Spring and Summer, we look at all aspects of wildlife.

My over−riding objective as group convenor is to help members improve their bird identification skills and encourage a wider interest in all natural history, including butterflies, moths, dragonflies and flowering plants.”


 ● To learn to identify birds visually and by calls and songs
 ● To learn about bird behaviour including migration
 ● To look at other wildlife, including dragonflies and butterflies
 ● To visit a bird observatory to see how birds are monitored


As a group, we will visit nature reserves, different habitats, perhaps including urban and suburban to watch birds, listen to their calls and songs, whilst not ignoring other wildlife such as butterflies and dragonflies in the Spring and Summer months. If weather is particularly unfavourable, the scheduled meeting may be cancelled and an alternative indoor meeting arranged. Lunch will be either packed food and drink or a pub/cafe lunch. Some meetings will only be half−day morning. Meetings may require walking of 1 to 5 miles, depending on location.


None. If you do not have a pair of binoculars, the Group Convenor would be willing to lend a pair on the day. The Group Convenor has a telescope and tripod, and others in the group may also have this optical equipment which everyone can use during the meeting. The Group Convenor will have a range of field guides.


Always dress for the weather conditions and take plenty of warm layers for winter months. Meetings will generally require walking shoes or boots, sometimes wellingtons. Members should be aware of ticks during the summer and wear light coloured long trousers.


Transport will be by members’ own cars, with car−share encouraged including sharing petrol costs, 20p per mile.


 ● All members should be responsible for their own safety and note any hazards on the day, depending on the terrain.
 ● Members with any medical condition should ensure they have all medication with them, as needed.
 ● Anyone with any particular disability should inform the Group Convenor in advance.
 ● It is advisable to carry a mobile phone in case of an emergency.
 ● Nobody should leave the meeting without first telling the Group Convenor.

Programme for 2019-20
5 August 2019
9:30am from Bath
Lacock, Wilts and Berks canal walk, with optional visit to NT Lacock Abbbey.
Packed lunch, or eat in PH/cafés in Lacock.
Target species: Woodland birds, Kingfisher, Reed Bunting, warblers, dragonflies, butterflies.
10.15am in NT car park on edge of village
Map 158
GR ST 917682
SAT NAV Hither Way
16 September
8:00am to 12:00 noon
Chew Valley Lake, Ringing Station.
Lunch not applicable, but suggest bring snack to eat after meeting.
Target species: Moth trap, bird ringing, migrant birds, wildfowl
9.00AM at Herriott's Bridge
Map 172 GR ST 572581
21 October
9:00am to 12:00 noon
Marshfield — Shire's Valley on Tormarton Road
Lunch not applicable but suggest bring snack to eat after meeting.
Target species: Raptors, farmland birds, Dipper
9.45AM in lay-by on Tormarton Road.
Exp Map 155
GR 784767.
18 November
9:00am from Bath
Ham Wall and Shapwick Heath
Packed lunch.
Target species: Raptors, wildfowl, Herons, Egrets, Bearded Reedling, Otter
10:15am at RSPB reserve car park on Ashcott Road
Landranger Map 182
GR ST 449395
16 December
FULL DAY to Dusk
9:00am from Bath
Slimbridge WWT with Aust Wharf option.
Packed lunch or eat in WWT centre restaurant.
Target species: Wildfowl, Raptors, including possible Merlin and Short-eared Owl at Aust Wharf, late afternoon/dusk
10:15am at ticket desk inside WWT centre.
20 January 2020
9:00am from Bath.
Cotswold Water Park, near Cirencester.
Packed Lunch.
Target species: Wildfowl, Grebes, Smew, Goosander, farmland birds.
10:15am at Neigh Bridge pay and display car park.
Landranger Map 163.
GR SU 018947, due north of Minety.
17 February
9:30am to 1:00pm.
City Walk. Pulteney Bridge to Prior Park NT gardens via Church Lane .
Lunch not applicable but suggest bring snack to eat during meeting.
Target species: Kingfisher, Peregrine, Grey Heron, early Spring bird song
9:30am On Riverside Walk, by Beazer Maze.
16 March
8:00am from Bath
Forest of Dean, Glos.
Packed lunch.
Target species: Hawfinch, Crossbill, Siskin, Goshawk.
9:15am at Parkend Church off Yorkley Road.
Landranger Map 162
GR SO 620077
20 April
9:00am from Bath.
Blagdon and Chew Reservoirs, leader Nigel Milbourne.
Packed lunch.
Target species: Migrant birds, woodland birds, wildfowl, Spring flora.
10:00am in car park within the reservoir site, dam end of the lake,
Landranger Map 182
GR ST 504597.
18-20 May
8:30am from Bath
Weymouth/Portland and Isle of Purbeck.
Based at Portland Heights Hotel, half-board.
Target species: Seabirds, warblers, including Dartford, migrants, Woodlark, Honey Buzzard, heathland insects and reptiles
Travel arangements TBA to participants in advance of the trip.
15 June
9:00am (from Bath) to 1:00pm
Caen Hill Locks, Devizes, Wilts
Packed Lunch or eat/buy snack in café near car park.
Target species: Sedge Warbler, Red Kite, Yellowhammer, dragonflies and other insects.
10:00am Canal & River Trust car park, off B3101 Marsh Lane.
Map 173
GR ST986616.
20 July
Blathwayt Arms PH, Lansdown
Pub lunch.
Discuss past/current programmes and ideas for future venues, etc.
12:00 noon

If you are interested in joining this group, please see the newsletter for contact details. You can also email us at the address below, but please state in your email whether or not you are a Bath U3A member.

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Some of our photos
All photographs courtesy of, and ©, Tom Pinckheard

Photo of Newport Wetlands hide
In the hide at Newport wetlands
Photo of lapwing
Photo of Clouded Yellow butterfly at Portland
Clouded Yellow butterfly at Portland
Photo of Firecrest at Blashford
Firecrest at Blashford
Page last updated 16/09/2019