As the Winter months set in, many more birds will be returning to our gardens in search of food, notwithstanding the bountiful supply of berries that nature has provided this year in the form of haws, blackberries and the bright red rowan and holly berries. And right on cue, Brian Burke from BirdWatch Ireland will join us next Tuesday (12th) at 8pm in the Glenview to explain how the Garden Bird Survey (which starts next month) is providing valuable information on the status of many common species and the overall impact that our feeding birds through the Winter is having on their survival.
Brian will have useful tips on what and how to feed birds and we will have a selection of bird food and feeders from the BWI Shop for sale on the night along with the BirdWatch 2020 Calendar and Christmas Cards.
In advance of the talk, we are holding our first Annual General Meeting to present the work of the Steering Committee and elect a Branch Committee for the next 12 months. In accordance with the BWI Articles of Association, fully paid up members of the BirdWatch Ireland Wicklow Branch can vote at the AGM, which takes place at 7pm.
On Sunday 17th, we will be down in the East Coast Nature Reserve as part of the successful Programme of Wildlife Events entitled ‘Connecting People + Nature in Wicklow 2019’ organised in conjunction with Deirdre Burns in the Wicklow Co Co Heritage Office. The early flooding of the Reserve this Winter means that it is already home to hundreds of Wigeon and Teal, with Shoveler, Black-Tailed Godwit, Curlew, Greenshank and Greylag Geese regularly seen there in recent weeks.
And then the following weekend (Saturday 23rd) we’re off to Cahore, just south of the Wicklow border in Wexford, a Winter home to lots of Whooper Swans and Greylag Geese – and if we’re lucky we may even spot the elusive Bearded Reedlings (or Bearded Tits), which were resident there this Summer.
Wicklow Branch Events November to January
Tuesday 12th: Wicklow Branch AGM. All Wicklow BirdWatch Ireland members are welcome, proof of membership will be required in the form of the new membership card which is downloadable from the new BirdWatch Ireland website. Glenview Hotel at 19:00.
Tuesday 12th: The ‘Who, What, Where, When and Why’ of the Garden Bird Survey by Brian Burke from BirdWatch Ireland. Glenview Hotel at 20:00.
Sunday 17th: East Coast Nature Reserve: Winter Migrants – Waterfowl. 11.00am – 1.00pm. Guided walk in search of winter migrants. The reserve is an important site for wildfowl such as Teal, Wigeon, Shoveler, and Black-tailed Godwit. Meet at the Sea Road entrance.
Saturday 23rd: Outing to Cahore, Co Wexford to see Whooper Swans and other winter visitors. Meet at Ballinoulart Bay beach car park (South end Cahore) at 10:00 (contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you need a lift).
Tuesday 10th: “The Avonmore River valley: a Black Forest for Ireland?,” by Coilin MacLochlainn: a talk about linking up all of the existing semi-natural woodlands in the Avonmore valley, from Luggala south to Shelton Abbey and Arklow. Glenview Hotel at 20:00.
Sunday 15th: Festive Wildlife Walk & Wreath Making Workshop at East Coast Nature Reserve in connection with “Connecting People with Nature in Wicklow” and ECNR, supported by Wicklow County Council. Join a festive walk around the reserve, and celebrate the return of the winter migrants. After a short jaunt you will have the chance to make a winter wreath. Meet at East Coast Nature Reserve, Newcastle at 11:00
Tuesday 14th: “Ireland Through Birds” by Conor W. O’Brien. An accomplished birder, photographer and now author, Conor will take us on an avian adventure around Ireland in search of twelve of our most elusive birds. Glenview Hotel, 8pm
Saturday 25th: Outing to Wexford Wildfowl Reserve. Meet at Wexford Wildlife Reserve at 10.30am. Car-pool from Greystones Park and Ride at 8.30am (contact email@example.com if you need a lift).