Where to Watch Birds in Surrey and Sussex pre-order offer

Where to Watch Birds in Surrey and Sussex

The new and updated Where to Watch Birds in Surrey and Sussex book, out in early 2024, is available for pre-order here. Surrey Bird Club members are entitled to a special 30% off that applies to pre-orders. This discount can be obtained by entering the code SURREYBIRDS30.

Steve Chastell

Steve Chastell

( 1964 – 2023)

We were shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Steve Chastell last week, at the age of only 59. Steve was our county bird recorder, former chair of Surrey Bird Club, and a well-known figure to many in the worlds of birding and nature, both in Surrey and beyond.

Steve was a dedicated local patch watcher, spending many hours in the field, usually on his bike. The Stoke area was his main focus, along with other sites in the Guildford area. He was also an experienced ringer, ringing with the group at Queen Mary … Read more

Unstead: SWT award

Unstead Wetlands (David Hodson)

On 3 August 2023, Surrey Wildlife Trust hosted a Community Celebratory Evening and announced the winners of the Community Champion Awards. These awards celebrate the individual and collective actions being taken for nature by Surrey community groups. The event saw representatives from 35 different community groups come together, all with a common collective goal: to support nature’s recovery in Surrey.

The Rising Star Award was presented to Unstead Nature Community Group which manages Unstead Wetland Nature Reserve (formerly known as Unstead Sewage Farm): a 25.7 acre (10.4 hectare) site located in the River Wey valley, near Peasmarsh, south of Guildford. … Read more

Puttenham Common

Puttenham Common (Hampton Estate)

Some Surrey Bird Club members may have heard about the exciting plans for Puttenham Common. which is owned and managed by Hampton Estate. In 1968 the Estate opened the common to the public. They have just created a 100-year vision to restore 180 hectares of lowland heathland, dry acid grassland, purple moor grass and rush pasture, fen, bogs, mires, lowland mixed deciduous woodland and wood pasture.

Puttenham Common’s mosaic of rare habitats makes it a very important nature hot spot. Over the last 200 years in the UK, we have lost 84% of our lowland heathland and it remains one … Read more

SBCRC decisions

The latest batch of decisions from the Surrey Bird Club Records Committee can be read here.

Tice’s Meadow volunteers

Willow Cutting at Tice's Meadow

Volunteer work parties at Tice’s Meadow

The new season of monthly work parties at Tice’s Meadow starts this month with the emphasis on enhancing the reedbeds by clearing the invasive willow. Surrey Bird Club members are welcome to join. More details below.

  • Saturday 23rd September – cutting willow in reedbeds.
  • Saturday 21st October – cutting willow in reedbeds.
  • Saturday 4th November – cutting willow in reedbeds.
  • Saturday 16th December – cutting willow in reedbeds.

Schedule weather dependent & subject to change. See Tice’s Meadow Bird Group (TMBG) social media for updates.

  • All work parties start at
Read more

2020 Surrey Bird Report

Surrey Bird Report 2020.

The 2020 Surrey Bird Report (SBR) is out and will be arriving with members now.

This, the 68th edition of the SBR, features a review of the year and the full systematic list of birds seen in the vice-county in 2020, as well as the annual ringing report and a range of colour photos. Also included are papers on breeding Honey Buzzard in Surrey and on the county’s first Bonaparte’s Gull and second Short-toed Lark.

Non-members may purchase a copy at a price of £12.00 including postage & packing or join the club here.

Where to Watch Birds in Surrey and Sussex book

Where to Watch Birds in Surrey and Sussex

A new Where to Watch Birds in Surrey and Sussex book will be published by Bloomsbury early next year. Written by Matt Phelps and Ed Stubbs, the publication is available now for pre-order here.

The description on the Bloomsbury website reads: “This site guide covers the counties of East Sussex, West Sussex and Surrey, including sites in southwest Greater London.

From the heaths of Surrey to the chalky grassland of the North and South Downs, the great forests of the Weald and the headlands, shingle beaches and river valleys of England’s south coast, these three counties are a bird-rich … Read more

Turtle Doves

Hope for Surrey’s Turtle Doves

The Turtle Dove is sadly on the verge of local extinction within Surrey, with only a small number of records each year. This reflects that it is one of the UK’s fastest-declining wild bird species. As a long distance migrant, conservation efforts for Turtle Dove must span across countries and continents.  This year, the species has been thrown a “lifeline” by the European Commission, who have recommended that no Turtle Dove will be hunted in south-west Europe in 2023 for the third year running.

Whilst most of the population decline since the 1970s is primarily … Read more

East Coast Wetlands

Surrey birders travelling to Kent, Essex, Suffolk or even as far as Yorkshire may be interested to learn that England’s east coast wetlands will be added to the UK’s Tentative List of World Heritage sites. Inclusion is the first stage towards joining UNESCO’s (United National Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) World Heritage List, which recognises cultural and natural heritage across the globe that is considered to be of outstanding universal value to humanity.

The proposed site brings together a coastal network of wetlands covering 170,000 hectares, and covers sites that many Surrey birders will be familiar with, such as Kent’s … Read more