Latest Sightings        

Mon, 21 Jan 2019 River Usk at Llanllywel Smew
Mon, 21 Jan 2019 River Usk at Llanbadoc Goldeneye and Goosander
Mon, 21 Jan 2019 Llandegfedd Res Scaup

Latest News

2018 Sightings Wanted NOW!
It's that time of year again!  Please send your 2018 records to the county recorder ASAP.  Just download the Excel spreadsheet from the GOS website and start entering your sightings – records should be submitted by 31 January 2019 if possible.  Click here to see how to do this. 
Although we would prefer to receive records submitted using the spreadsheet, records submitted via Word documents and paper slips will still be accepted.  If you use Word, please make sure there is a new line for each record and that data is entered in the following order and separated by a Tab: 
Species name, location/site, date of sighting, number of birds, comments (such as age/sex of birds, breeding notes etc), your name and initials.
But please try the spreadsheet method – you'll find it easy and we'll find sorting and assessing your records much simpler.  
Could those of you who use BirdTrack (an acceptable alternative) please also send your records to Darryl?  This is merely to ensure no record goes missing.
Please email your electronic format (spreadsheet, etc.) records to Darryl Spittle at countyrecorder@gwentbirds.org.uk or post them to 48 Ffos-y-Fran, Bassaleg, Newport NP10 8LU.
Annual General Meeting - Saturday January 26th, Goytre Village Hall, 7:30 pm

The AGM of the Society will be held on Saturday January 26th 2019 at Goytre Village Hall, Penperllenni, NP4 0AW commencing at 7:30 pm. 

The formalities of the AGM will be followed by a Finger Buffet where the trick is to bring some finger food to be shared by everyone and then take the opportunity to select something that looks far more appetising than your own offering!

Following the buffet the Members Evening will conclude with three short presentations by our own members recounting, with photos their birding experiences.. 

Indoor Meeting Saturday February 2nd 2019, Goytre Village Hall, 7:30 pm


Mike Dilger is an ecologist, natural history presenter (BBC One Show, BBC 'Inside Out') and writer. He has a life long passion for British and tropical flora and fauna, of which he has a profound experience and encyclopaedic knowledge. 

"The Trials & Tribulations of a Wildlife Presenter"

Mike with the help of photographs and video clips will bring to life what the reality is of being a television presenter. This promises to be a fun packed presentation.

There will be an opportunity to purchase books authored by Mike and have them signed.

7:30 pm Goytre Village Hall, Penperllenni, NP4 0AW. £2 entry fee includes tea & biscuits

Colour-ringed Curlew sightings needed
The critical decline of Curlew is well documented and your help is required in reporting all sightings of recently colour-ringed birds.
Some Curlew wintering on the Rivers Usk and Severn have been ringed, using six rings on the legs.  Information on their whereabouts will help conservation efforts.
The key colour rings to identify individuals are the single ring on the left tibia (upper leg), and the two rings on the right tibia (blue and lime green).  There is a metal ring on the right tarsus, and two colours on the left tarsus to denote the project (yellow and white).
Andrew Strong is collating information on re-sightings of any of these birds on behalf of the BTO.  Please email Andrew details of any colour-ringed Curlew that you see, to aj.strong@icloud.com, and he’ll get back in touch with you to let you know the bird's history.
Usk-marked wintering birds have been reported on their breeding grounds in both Poland and Finland.  Any further sightings of your birds will be published in The Dipper (the Gwent Ornithological Society newsletter), or see http://www.curlewcall.org .

The Society welcomes IOLO WILLIAMS to present an illustrated talk 'THE WILDLIFE OF WALES'

on Monday March 25th 2019 at 7:30 pm at Woodland Road Sports and Social Centre, Cwmbran, NP44 2DZ.

Tickets £10.00 each, Under 16's £5.00

Members may purchase their tickets at the reduced rate of £5.00 each.

Tickets available from: GOS Tickets, 100, Glan Rhyd, Cwmbran, NP44 6TZ.

Cheques should be made payable to 'Gwent Ornithological Society'. Please enclose a stamped addressed envelope.

Entry strictly by ticket only. Doors open 6:45 pm.

Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the Society will be held at Goytre Village Hall, Penperllenni at 7:30 pm on Saturday January 26th 2019.

If any member wishes to make any proposal for discussion at the AGM, they should submit their proposal to secretary@gwentbirds.org.uk priot to 12th January 2019.

Birdwatching permits are required for Llandegfedd Reservoir from October 1st - March 1st. They can be purchased from the Welsh Water visitor centre located at the Dam end of the reservoir at a cost of £8.00.
For entry to the north end of the reservoir you will need a key for the car park gate. The keys cost £6.00 and you can obtain them from the visitor centre at the same time as the permit. If you already hold a key from a previous year you do NOT need a new one.
GDPR: How we use your personal data (May 2018)

Gwent Ornithological Society uses personal data of members and contributors to Society publications and website. This is detailed in the article 'How we use your personal data (May 2018)' which you can find here in Articles.

CHICK MORTALITY / PREDATION at Newport Wetlands Reserve
A study is being made of chick mortality at NWR and your help is requested. If you see any type of chick predation / mortality whilst bird watching at the reserve would you please use the form at the link NRW Chick Predation and send your reports to Thomas.Dalrymple@cyfoethnaturiolcymru.gov.uk Whilst it is expected that most predation is by avian predators (Gulls, Herons, Corvids, Raptors ) if you note any mammalian predators the same form can be used. Your observations will be helpful in the overall monitoring exercise.
Reporting sightings of rare and Schedule 1 birds on the GOS website

In Gwent's wide variety of habitats we have many sites of ornithological interest which hold rare and Schedule 1 breeding bird species.  Newport Wetlands Reserve, which encompasses Goldcliff lagoons, Uskmouth reedbeds and the grasslands, is a well managed site and very secure for breeding birds, but sites elsewhere in the county are unprotected and the many breeding species present there are vulnerable to threats such as disturbance and, potentially, even egg collectors.  

For this reason please AVOID POSTING SIGHTINGS WHICH INCLUDE SPECIFIC LOCATIONS (other than at NWR) for any rare, locally rare or Schedule 1 species that you suspect are breeding, showing signs of breeding behaviour or are in suitable habitat, on the Gwent Ornithological Society Sightings page.  

If you discover a rare or Schedule 1 species that you suspect is breeding, please report your sighting directly to the county recorder at countyrecorder@gwentbirds.org.uk or on 07982 719881.  

Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any queries.           

Tom Chinnick

Gwent County Bird Recorder


Schedule 1 species which may be found include the following:



Red Kite

Marsh Harrier


Little Ringed Plover






Bearded Tit 


Cetti’s Warbler