Sunday book review – Birding in the Bristol region (edited by William Earp)


The Bristol Ornithological Club is 50 years old and this book is a celebration of its first half century. I was a member from 1970-76 and so my memories are mostly from its early years when I was a schoolboy and starting (mad) keen birding.

This is a friendly warm book which sketches the origins of the club, describes the area’s logo bird (Pied-billed Grebe – a British and Irish first at Chew Valley and Blagdon Lakes by Robin Prytherch), contains 50 accounts of local species from rarities to Feral Pigeon, an account of 50 years of change, 50 tips for better birding (which includes a recommendation to read this blog), and some numbers describing the club over those years.

How many Pied-billed Grebes have been in Britain and Ireland since that first one?  Can you guess? Another 43 actually.

How many bird species have been seen in the rather plastic county of Avon (I was born in the city and county of Bristol myself)? Can you guess? 344 it seems – that’s a lot! It may be more than I’ve seen in the UK – I should have stayed in Bristol!

Congratulations to the BOC on their 50 years and on this book  I am looking forward to being with the BOC at their celebratory meeting later this week

Birding in the Bristol region: a celebration (edited by William Earp) is published by the Bristol Ornithological Club.  It is available from William Earp at 4 Pitchcombe Gardens, Coombe Dingle Bristol BS9 2RH ( or through at a price of £12 (inc P&P).

Remarkable Birds by Mark Avery is published by Thames and Hudson – for reviews see here.

Inglorious: conflict in the uplands by Mark Avery is published by Bloomsbury – for reviews see here.


Website Pin Facebook Twitter Myspace Friendfeed Technorati Digg Google StumbleUpon Premium Responsive