Birds of the Stour Valley

The Stour Valley for the purposes of this report is defined as the area from Fordwich eastwards to Grove Ferry. The area is centred on the National Nature Reserve at Stodmarsh and Grove Ferry but includes some fine habitats and locations in areas adjacent to the reserve.

In May 2004 my personal list for the valley reached 200 species. I was aware that some other birders including Geoff Burton and John Cantelo had valley lists around the same size, so I started on a mission to calculate what the definitive list for the valley might be. Unfortunately this task got a little out of hand and several months later, a simple list had expanded into a more comprehensive record of birds seen in the valley.

Two main sources provided the bulk of records. These were Kent Bird reports from 1952 onwards and The Stodmarsh National Nature Reserve Bird Report 1988-1998 published by English Nature in 1999. (Copies of this excellent document may still be available from English Nature at Wye). Records for 2003 and 2004 are incomplete as the Kent Bird Reports for these years haven’t been published. I have tried to fill some of the gaps through my own records and those of other birders who regularly watch Grove Ferry and Stodmarsh.

I have for the most part only included records that have been submitted to and accepted by the appropriate authorities. However in one or two incidences, I have made reference to more unusual records that appear not to have been submitted to the KOS or British birds. I know that the records included in this report are incomplete. I would be grateful for any additional records that I have missed and for any comments that people may wish to make. I would be particularly interested to hear about additional species that I haven’t included.

Brendan Ryan
March 2005

Any additional records or comments can be sent by e mail to:


Stour Valley Species List

Last updated January 2009








Red-throated Diver

Irregular winter visitor. Has occurred in at least 17 years since 1976 with at least 29 birds

One Westbere, 21st to 29th Feb 76

3 Westbere, 17th Feb 79

2 Stodmarsh, 12th Dec 1981

One Stodmarsh, 28th Dec 1981

3 Westbere, Jan 1982

One Fordwich, Feb 1983

One Fordwich, 30th Mar 1984

One Stodmarsh, 9th Dec 1984

One Stodmarsh, Jan 1985

One Westbere, Jan 1986

One Stodmarsh, 27th -28th Dec 1986

One Stodmarsh, 2nd Jan 1989

One Stodmarsh, 8th -9th Feb 1989

One Stodmarsh, 27th Jan 1990

One Stodmarsh, 2nd Feb 1992

One Westbere 11th Mar 95

One Stodmarsh 22nd Mar 96

One Stodmarsh 5th, 22nd Jan, 5th-9th Feb1997

One Stodmarsh, 11th to 20th April 1997

One Stodmarsh, 7th Jan 2001

One Collard's 25th Jan 2003

One Stodmarsh, 5th Jan 2007

Black- throated Diver

Scare winter visitor. Five records all but one at Westbere, but not recorded since 1986

One Westbere, 29th Jan to 5th Feb 72

One Westbere 12th -19th Jan 1982

One Westbere, 5th -18th 1984

One Westbere, 23rd Nov 1985

One Stodmarsh, 23rd Feb 1986

Great Northern Diver

Very rare winter visitor. One record at Westbere in 1975


One Westbere, 1st to 23rd Dec 75

Little Grebe

Resident, breeding in small numbers. Can be very inconspicuous.



16 Westbere 16th Nov 1988

Three pairs bred Stodmarsh, 1989

32 in middle Stour Dec 1989

Three pairs bred Grove in 2000

Great Crested Grebe

Resident breeder. Most numerous on Fordwich and Westbere lakes. Nine pairs bred Stodmarsh NNR in 1990.


Five pairs bred Stodmarsh 1989

Red-necked Grebe

Irregular winter visitor. Nine were present at Westbere during very harsh weather in February 1979. Has become more scarce in recent years with only two records since 1999

One Stodmarsh 8th Mar 1956

One Fordwich 27th Dec 1960

One Stodmarsh 1st Nov 1966

One Stodmarsh 29th Oct -25th Nov 1967

One Stodmarsh 24th Oct 1970

One Westbere 21st Nov 1973

One Westbere 29th Dec 1973

Nine Westbere/Fordwich Feb 1979

2 Stodmarsh, Nov 1981

One Stodmarsh, 7th Jan 1984

One Stodmarsh, 11th -26th Dec 1984

One Grove, 17th Jan -2nd Feb 1985

One Stodmarsh, 7th -8th Jan 1987

One Westbere, 9th Aug 1987

Singles Stodmarsh, Jan &  Mar 89

One Stodmarsh, Jan 1990

One Stodmarsh  28th -31st Dec 1992

One Stodmarsh 29th Mar 1994

One Westbere 11th Mar -3rd Apr 1995

One Stodmarsh 9th -10th Mar 1996

One Stodmarsh, 20th Nov 1996

One Stodmarsh. 15th Jan 1999

One Collard's14th/15th Jan 2006

One Westbere, 6th Nov 2008

Slavonian Grebe

Scare winter visitor. Has occurred in only six years since 1976, including four at Westbere in Feb 1979

One Westbere Feb/Mar 1977

Four Westbere 1979

One Stodmarsh, 10th Feb 1982

One Stodmarsh, 30th Jan 1987

Singles Stodmarsh, Feb and Mar 1996

One Stodmarsh 14th Jan 2006

Black-necked Grebe

Scare winter visitor and passage migrant.

One Stodmarsh Feb 1976

One Westbere, 27th Jan 1979

One Stodmarsh 17th Jan 89

One Stodmarsh 6th Apr 1991

One Stodmarsh 7th May 94

One Stodmarsh 26th Nov 1994

2 Stodmarsh 11th Nov 97

5 Stodmarsh 14th Mar 99

One Collard's 28th Mar 2005

One Collard's14th Jan- 19th Feb 2006

One Collard's 2nd April 2006

2 Collard's 9th Aug- 14th Sept 2008

One Westbere 16th-31st Dec 2008


Rare visitor with two summer records from Stodmarsh

One Stodmarsh 29th August 1969

One Stodmarsh 1st June 1979

Storm Petrel

Rare visitor, one record

One Stodmarsh. 7th Jan 1967

Leach's Petrel Rare visitor, one record One Grove Ferry 13th Nov 2005


Rare visitor, one record

Juv, Stodmarsh, 2nd Nov 1986


Resident. 5 pairs bred at Stodmarsh in 1947, then bred at Collard's Lake since at least 1990. Breeding numbers have steadily increased with 97 pairs in 2001. Winter roosts at Stodmarsh and Collard's exceed 200 birds.



Rare visitor, four records

One Westbere 2nd May  1964

Two Westbere, 5th Feb 1984

One Stodmarsh 19th Jan 1992

One Grove Ferry 21st Sept 2008


Regular winter resident with occasional summer records. Most records are from Stodmarsh and Grove Ferry but birds are occasionally seen at Westbere and Collard’s, especially in cold weather. Wintering numbers have increased in recent years and between 3 and 7 usually winter. Formerly bred with 10 pairs in 1962. Last confirmed breeding record in 1969 although there have been records of booming males in a number of subsequent years. A feature of recent years has been gatherings of birds at dusk from late February and through March. Peak counts are usually in mid March and have increased from 8 in 2002, 12 in 2003 and a staggering 16 in 2004.

March gatherings, 5 12th Mar 2000,

8 27th Mar 1999

16, Stodmarsh 13th Mar 2004

8, Stodmarsh, 10th Mar 2005

Stodmarsh 7 in Jan 97

Little Bittern

Formerly a scare visitor with nine records up to 1976 but only one record since, in June 1999

Stodmarsh 27th May 1962

Stodmarsh 23 rd July 23rd July 1966

Stodmarsh, 11th June 1969

Westbere. 2nd May 1971

Westbere 6th May 1973 (2)

Stodmarsh, 25th -27th May 1975

Male, Stodmarsh, 1st to 6th June 1999

Night Heron

Rare summer visitor. Three records

One Stodmarsh 18th-19th June 1968

One Stodmarsh 23rd Jul to 23rd Sept 1969

One Stodmarsh/Westbere 18th August 1987

Cattle Egret

Rare visitor. The May 1992 record was the first for Kent record. The adult and Juv together in July 07 might have resulted from local breeding as the first confirmed breeding in the UK was confirmed the following year

One Stodmarsh May 1992

One Stodmarsh 15th May 1995

One Grove Ferry 23rd July 2006, same 30th July -7th Aug & Stodmarsh 6th Aug

2 Grove Ferry Adult and juv, 21st Jul 2007. Adult to 22nd  juv till 24th Jul

2 Grove Ferry 19th Oct 2007

One Westbere (Cow Corner) 26th May 2008

Little Egret

Increasingly regular visitor almost resident. First recorded in 9th May 1971. In recent years, regular at Grove with over 20 in late summer. A regular winter roost was beginning to be established at Stodmarsh (27 on 23rd Jan 2002) but in 2003/4 a majority of birds seem to roost at Seaton and only single birds occasionally roost at Stodmarsh

21 Grove Ferry 2nd Aug 2004

Great White Egret

Rare visitor, six records

One Stodmarsh 5th Mar 1977

One Stodmarsh, 23rd Aug to 14th Oct 1990

One Grove Ferry 3rd Jan 2005

One Grove Ferry 20th Oct 2005

One Grove Ferry 9th July 2006

One Grove Ferry 28th Aug 2006

One, Grove Ferry 4th Nov 2007

One Cow Corner 6th June 2008

Grey Heron

Common resident. A small breeding colony exists between Fordwich and Stodmarsh. In 2003 there were around 12 occupied nests


Purple Heron

Irregular visitor mostly in spring. 20 records up until 2001.

10 records up to 1976

One Stodmarsh, 27th April 1968

One Grove Ferry, 4th May 1969

One Stodmarsh 24th -31st May 1970

One Stodmarsh, 25th April-19th May 1971

One Stodmarsh 1st June 1972

One Stodmarsh 29th April 1973

2 Stodmarsh, 19th May 1974

One Stodmarsh, 30th May 1976

One Fordwich, 1st June 1977

One Fordwich, 25th May 1978

One Stodmarsh, 29th -30th June 1978

One Westbere, 19th -20th May 1979, same Stodmarsh 22nd May

Singles Stodmarsh, 18th May, 26th May, 25th Jun, 10th Jul 1980

One Fordwich, 18th -28th April 1981

One Stodmarsh, 30th Oct 1982

One Stodmarsh, 22nd-26th April 1983

One Westbere/Stodmarsh, 31st May-1st June 1986

One Stodmarsh, 20th April 1987

One Westbere, 7th -12th May 1990

One Grove Ferry 21st July 1990

One Stodmarsh 31st May-4th June 1991

One Stodmarsh, 22nd April 1996

One Stodmarsh 15th May 1999

One Grove Ferry, 30th July- 11th Aug 1999

One Grove Ferry 1st Sept 1999

Black Stork

Very rare visitor. One over Grove Ferry 18th Sept 2004 was seen the following day flying out to sea at St Margaret's. The 2008 bird was well twitched at Seaton th efollowing day. There are unsubstantiated reports in 1995 and 2001

One Grove Ferry, 18th Sept 2004

One Stodmarsh 18th July 2008

[one reported Stodmarsh 6th Sept 1995]


White Stork

Scare visitor with some records likely to refer to escaped birds that lingered in East Kent for a time

2 , together May 1960 but other pre 1976 records unclear

Singles in April and June 1976

Singles 1985, 1988, 1996 and 1998

Several sightings of birds in March, June and Oct 2004

One Grove Ferry 28th April 2005

One Grove Fery 22nd May 2005

One Collard's 5th June 2008

Glossy Ibis

One from 14th Dec 1975 was joined by another on 28th Oct 1979. One remained until 3rd Feb 1985 and the other till 30th Jan 1993. These birds were most easily seen flying over the Lampen Wall to roost. They ranged quite widely during the summer, spending much time on Sheppey.

One from 14th Dec 1975

One from 28th Oct 1979

till 3rd Feb 1985 and 30th Jan 1993


Irregular visitor until 1989 but since the restoration of Grove Ferry now a regular visitor with sevreal records most years. Largest Counts have involved flocks of 5 birds in June 1996 and July 2002. At least six individuals occurred in 2004. There is an unsubstantiated report of nine in June 1996

Grove Ferry, 26th Dec1962

Stodmarsh, May/June 1977

3 Stodmarsh, June 1976

Stodmarsh, Dec 1978

One Stodmarsh, 28th May 1980

One Stodmarsh, 30th Sept 1989

2 Stodmarsh 20th July 1991

One Stodmarsh, 11th May 1992

One Stodmarsh, 6th June 1993

One Stodmarsh, 26th Jul 1995

One Stodmarsh, 10th Mar 1996

One Stodmarsh 27th April 1996

5 Stodmarsh 15th June 1996

4 Stodmarsh, 24th July 1996

One Stodmarsh, 12th Mar 1997

One Stodmarsh, 1st Jul 1997

1-2 Grove Ferry, 5th June to 29th July 1999, 3, 23rd to 29th July 1999

Up to 3 Grove Ferry, 22nd June to 12th Jul 2000

One Grove Ferry April 2001

5 Grove Ferry 23rd Jul 2002

One Grove Ferry 28th June 2003

Singles Grove Ferry, 19th/20th Mar, 24th April, 19th/20th June, 17th /18th July 2004

2 Grove Ferry 15th Aug 2004

One Grove/Stodmarsh, 16th –20th Mar 2005

Mute Swan

Resident. A large summering flock on Collard's and Hersden lakes numbers up to 430 birds. Small numbers breed throughout the valley

Max 436 Aug July 2002

Bewick's Swan

Irregular winter visitor. During the 1990's used to regularly roost at Stodmarsh. In recent winters a few have roosted at Grove Ferry spending the day on the Ash levels


Whooper Swan

Scarce winter visitor

23 Stodmarsh Jan 1956

25 Stodmarsh, Jan-mar 1963

One, Stodmarsh 2nd Jan 1970

17 Stodmarsh, 4th Jan 1970

7 grove Ferry, 4th Jan 1970

13 Stodmarsh, 1st Jan 1971

5 Grove Ferry 20th Feb 1971

2 Stodmarsh, 28th Nov 1972

2 Westbere, 6th Jan 1979

9  Grove Ferry, 27th Jan – 3rd Mar 1985 (13 on 3rd Feb)

5 Grove 4th Jan 1986

One Stodmarsh 20th Feb 1986

5 Stodmarsh, 11th Jan 1987

16 Stodmarsh, 18th Jan -7th Feb 1987

2 Stodmarsh, 19th Jan 1991

One Stodmarsh 17th Feb 1991

One 1st Jan 1996

3 Stodmarsh 30th Dec 1998

3 Stodmarsh 12th Dec 2001

2 Grove Ferry 4th Dec 2005 & 2nd Jan 2006

 One Grove Ferry, 26th Jan 2008

Bean Goose

Scare and but increasingly regular visitor. Birds usually associate with the resident Greylags. All recent records have referred to Tundra Bean Geese, rossicus

2 Stodmarsh 20th Mar 1977

 Grove, Feb 1979

9 Grove Ferry 4th -10th Feb 1979

2 Grove Ferry 22nd Dec 1979

38 Grove, 26th -28th Dec 1981

One Stodmarsh, Dec 1983 -18th Mar 1984

9 Stodmarsh, 23rd-25th Jan 1986

10 Grove Ferry 29th Jan-Mar 4th 1992

11 Grove, 30th -31st Dec 1992

3 Grove, 31st Dec 1996

One Stodmarsh 7th & 12th April 2002

One Grove Ferry, 10th April 2004

2 Grove Ferry 4th Feb 2006, 3 on 6th Feb

Pink-footed Goose

Scare and irregular visitor.

16 at Grove in Jan 2004 included a neck collared individual. 3 were present in the valley Feb/March 2004

A feral bird was regularly seen during 2001/2. Has become more regular in recent years


White-fronted Goose

Regular winter visitor. Flocks have winter in the valley in the past but most records in recent years have been of passage birds or occasionally birds mixed in with the resident Greylag flocks

230 Stodmarsh, 28th Jan 1979

128 Stodmarsh, Jan 1994

Greylag Goose

Common resident with up to 600 birds in the vicinity in 2003. Several pairs breed annually at Grove Ferry


Snow Goose

One record, Blue phase, Jan 1979

 One, Stodmarsh 27th Jan to 3rd Feb 1979

Canada Goose

Regular visitor but numbers much smaller that Greylags. Seen through out the valley but the water meadows at Westbere are the most regular spot. First bred in valley in 1971. Greylag/Canada Geese hybrids regularly occur with Greylag flock

119 Stodmarsh, Sept 2002

Barnacle Goose

Many records of presumed feral or escaped birds including one semi resident with the greylag flock from 2003 until Jan 2005 at least

45 over Stodmarsh on 29th Jan 1992 may refer to wild birds


Brent Goose

Scare visitor, Most records relate to flocks migrating overland in October and November. This is a well established pattern elsewhere in Kent. One at Grove Ferry in 2004 wintered with the Greylag flock at Seaton

16 Stodmarsh, 28th Dec 1987

90 over Stodmarsh, 8th Oct 1989

45 over Stodmarsh, 4th Nov 1991

30 Stodmarsh, 20th Nov 1991

One Grove Ferry, 5th Dec 2004, same 5th Feb 2005

One Grove Ferry 11th Oct 2007

Red-breasted Goose

Rare visitor, one record. Westbere, 21st to 23rd Oct 1977. Believed to be same bird seen in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire earlier in month. Originally accepted by BBRC but subsequently review by KOS and determined to be unacceptable.

Westbere, 21st to 23rd Oct 1977

Egyptian Goose

Scarce  visitor

4 Stodmarsh, 2nd Aug 1974

2 Stodmarsh, 26th April 1975

One Westbere, 24th Oct-31st Dec 1978

One Stodmarsh 4th April 1989

One seen on several occasions Grove Ferry Mar/April 2001

One Grove Ferry Intermittently Jan-April 2002

One Stodmarsh 10th April 2004

One Collard’s Lake 29th Jan to 6th Feb 2005,


Probable resident and occasional breeder



Rare visitor. Seven records.

Stodmarsh 3rd June and 22nd October 1978

One Stodmarsh, 31st July 1990

Drake Westbere Dec 1991

Drake Stodmarsh May 2004

Drake 9th Nov 2004

Drake 10th Jan 2009


Common winter visitor with largest numbers at Collard’s Lake where numbers are frequently in excess of 1,000. Single birds or pairs occasionally remain during the summer


American Wigeon

Rare visitor. One record in 1977

One Stodmarsh 23rd May to June 1977


Common resident. First Bred in 1966. Max count 360 Oct 2002

360 Stodmarsh Oct 2002


Resident with very large numbers in winter. Winter numbers in the valley probably exceed 2,000. Small numbers breed between Stodmarsh and Grove


Green-winged Teal

Rare visitor. Five records. A hybrid Teal/Green-winged Teal was present at Stodmarsh in Jan 2005 and was later seen at Grove Ferry. Further hybrids seen April 2006 and Feb 2007

One, Stodmarsh, 13th to 30th April 1996

One Grove Ferry, 26th Jan 2002

One, Grove Ferry  13th to 21st Jan 2005

One Grove Ferry 3rd-17th April 2005, second bird 10th -17th April


Common resident with up to 1,000 wintering in the valley



Regular winter visitor with especially at Collard’s Lake and Grove Ferry where up to 50 birds are often present. In 2001 a pair summered and may have bred.

Max counts 98 Jan 1996

83 Jan 1998


Once regular summer migrant. Maximum count of 120 in April 1952 with 16 pairs breeding pairs in 1963. Became much scarcer in 1970's and 80's but becoming regular again since 1999 with the restoration of Grove Ferry. Up to five breeding pairs and autumn counts at Grove of up to 40 in recent years. One bird wintered in 1999/2000


Blue-winged Teal

Rare visitor. Three records (4 birds) including one which was seen intermittently between June 1998 and Jan 2001

Drake Stodmarsh, 4th May to 17th May 1978

Drake Grove Ferry 13th June 1998 then intermittently till Jan 2001

2 eclipse drakes Stodmarsh 25th Oct 1998


Resident and winter visitor. An internationally important site for wintering numbers with about 2.2% of the British population. Largest wintering numbers on Stodmarsh Lake and Collard’s Lake

Max count 328 16th Nov 1997

328, 16th Nov 1997

Red-crested Pochard

Scarce but regular visitor. Six together at Collard’s Lake in Jan 2003 occurred during a severe freeze, these plus an additional bird were subsequently seen at Grove Ferry

Drake Stodmarsh 5th Jun 1977,

One Stodmarsh, 25th Oct- 11th Dec 1988

One Stodmarsh, 18th Feb- 10th Mar 1994

One Stodmarsh, 29th Oct 1995

One Westbere,  8th April 1996

One Stodmarsh, 7th June 1997

One Stodmarsh, 11th Oct 1998

Imm, Grove Ferry, 25th-31st Aug 2001

6 Collard's Lake 12th Jan 2003,

7 presumed same 3rd Feb Grove Ferry

One 27th Dec 2003 -25th Jan 2004

One Grove Ferry 16th April 2008 presumed same 5th- 9th June

4 Westbere 19th Dec 2008


Resident and winter visitor

Max count 203 in Feb 1996. Breeds regularly at Grove Ferry


Ring-necked Duck

Scare visitor, Four records including first for Kent. Records from 2002 onwards probably refer to the same individual which turned up as a first year bird at nearby Seaton in Jan 1999

One Stodmarsh, 9th April 1972

One Westbere, 2nd Feb 1977

One Collard's 13th -20th Jan 2002

One Collard's 23rd/24th March 2003

Drake Westbere 7th March 2004. Presumed same Collard’s Lake 28th Mar 2004

Ferruginous Duck

Rare visitor, Three records. 

One Stodmarsh 13th Jan 1979

One Stodmarsh 24th Jan 1999

One Westbere, 29th Dec 2008

Tufted Duck

Resident, breeding in small numbers

Record counts 167 in March 1997



Scarce visitor

One Stodmarsh, April 1976

One Westbere, Jan-Mar 1979

2 Stodmarsh 12th April 1979

2 Stodmarsh 17th/18th Feb 1991

One Stodmarsh 39th Jan -12th Feb 1999

One Stodmarsh 20th Jan-10th Feb 2002

One Stodmarsh 25th-27th Dec 2002

Grove Nov 2003

Collards 1st May 2004

One Collard's 26th March 05

Drake Grove ferry 1st/2nd Aug 05

One Stodmarsh 14th Jan 2007

One Collard's 10th Nov 2007

Long-tailed Duck

Rare visitor. Three records including an unusual record in June

Singles Stodmarsh, 3rd to 17th June  1978

One Stodmarsh, 7th Oct 1978

One Stodmarsh, 22nd April 1994

Common Scoter

Rare visitor, two records involving six birds.

4 Stodmarsh, 18th April 1964

2 Westbere, Feb 1979


Winter visitor, most frequently seen on Collard's Lake.

16 Collard’s 4th Feb 1990


Regular but scare winter visitor. Most recent records from Collard's Lake although occasionally seen on lake at Stodmarsh. A drake at Fordwich on 17th May 1956 was unusual as was a redhead on the River Stour at Stodmarsh 5th -27th June 1993

30 Stodmarsh, 21st Feb 1954

Red-breasted Merganser

Irregular and scarce winter visitor with 6 records since 1976. Most records from Westbere including 12 in the exceptional cold spell in Feb 1979

One Stodmarsh 24th Mar 1963

One Stodmarsh 21st Dec 1973

Stodmarsh 11th to 15th Jan 1976

Westbere 8th Feb and 28th Mar 1976

2 Westbere, 5th March 1978

12 Westbere, 23 Feb 1979

One Westbere, 14th Feb 1998

One Fordwich, 29th Nov 2008


Irregular winter visitor


Ruddy Duck

Up to 3 pairs breed at Grove Ferry. Scare in winter when occasionally recorded at Collard's.


Honey Buzzard

Irregular spring migrant. Records have become more regular in recent years in line with a general increase in sightings in Kent. 13 records up to 2003

One Stodmarsh 5th June 1974

One Stodmarsh 22nd May 1981

One Westbere, 2nd Aug 1981

One Westbere 2nd  June 1984

One Grove, 26th June 1984

One Stodmarsh, 28th May 1992

One Westbere 29th May 1997

2 Stodmarsh 26th May1999

One Grove Ferry, 5th June 1999

One Grove Ferry, 8th May 2001

One Stodmarsh, 9th May 2001

One Grove Ferry, 1st Sept 2001

One Grove Ferry, 18th May 2003

One Stodmarsh 20th May 05

Singles Grove Ferry 21st & 29th  May, 1st & 19th June , 18th Sept 2005

One Grove 23rd Sept 2006

Black Kite

Rare visitor, Five records, all in May/June.  

One Stodmarsh 4th May 1984

One Collard's 24th May 1992, same Stodmarsh 25th May 1992

One Stodmarsh, 8th May 2000

One Stodmarsh/Grove 20th& 21st May 2006

One Collard's 7th June 2008

Red Kite

Scare but increasingly regular visitor. The 1953 record was the first county record in the 20th century.

One Grove Ferry 27th May 1953

One Stodmarsh, 9th Nov 1972

One Stodmarsh, 31st Mar 1981

One Stodmarsh 10th April 1988

One Stodmarsh 18th Oct 1992

One Stodmarsh 5th June 1994

One Stodmarsh29th Mar 1997

One Stodmarsh 31st Mar 1999

One Stodmarsh, 4th April 1999

One Grove Ferry 1st May 1999

One Stodmarsh 17th May 2000

One Grove Ferry 1st Sept 2001

Two Grove Ferry/Stodmarsh 31st May 2004

several records every year thereafter

Marsh Harrier

Resident throughout the year. Increasingly regular since 1980's. Up to 20 have roosted at Stodmarsh in recent winters.


Hen Harrier

Winter visitor with regular roost at Stodmarsh since 1977. Roost numbers peak at around 10 birds most winters although numbers in the last few years have been slightly down on this.


Montagu's Harrier

Occasionally seen on spring passage. Pairs occasionally summered in the 1950's and 1960's



Rare visitor.Five records with significant April bias

One Stodmarsh, 4th April 1979

One Stodmarsh, 4th April 1991

One Stodmarsh, 17th Sept 1992

One Grove Ferry, 16th April 1999

One Stodmarsh 10th April 2008




Common Buzzard

Infrequent but increasingly regular visitor. Seen throughout the year


Rough-legged Buzzard

Rare visitor. Birds have wintered in the area during influx years

2 Stodmarsh, 14th Dec 1966 to 2nd Jan 1967

One Stodmarsh, 18th Oct to Nov 1973

One Westbere, 13th Nov 1973

One Stodmarsh, 28th Feb -23rd April 1974

One Stodmarsh, 27th Oct 1974

One Stodmarsh, 2nd Jan 1982

One Stodmarsh, Jan/Mar 1987

Other birds reported in 1996 and 1998 and 2003


Regular but scarce passage migrant. Occasionally birds will remain in area for several days





Red-footed Falcon

Rare visitor. There was a remarkable influx in May/June 1992 involving at least 10 individuals and a maximum count of 6.

One Stodmarsh 29th May 1977

One Stodmarsh 28th June 1979

One Stodmarsh 30th May 1985

One Stodmarsh, 25th April 1987

Up to 6 Collard's 20th May to 10th June 1992

One Stodmarsh 9th -11th May 1994

One Stodmarsh, 5th May 1997

One Stodmarsh, 10th-14th May 2000

Another Stodmarsh 14th May 2000

One Collard's 11th -14th June 2000- 2 on last date

One Grove Ferry, 24th April 2004

adult male Grove Ferry 24th May 2008

Female Collard's 31st May-9th June 2008

Imm male Collard's 4th June -10th June 2008


Scare but regular winter visitor



Regular summer visitor with increasing concentration in may and early June with over 40 birds together in recent years. Probably breeds in the valley

 49 Grove Ferry/Stodmarsh 2nd May 2005


Regular visitor, mostly in winter but increasing sightings at other times of the year.


Red-legged Partridge

Scare resident. Regularly seen on Stodmarsh Road by Collard's Lake in 2004/5


Grey Partridge

Scare resident



Scare summer visitor. Around seven records

One Westbere May/June 1962


One Stodmarsh 14th June 1975,

One Stodmarsh, 1st May 1977

Singles Stodmarsh 1st& 31st May, and Aug 1997





Water Rail

Resident widespread throughout the valley in suitable habitat. Numbers increase in the winter.


Spotted Crake

Formerly an infrequent spring visitor which has bred. Since 1999 has become regular in autumn at Grove Ferry with up to 8 birds each year. The number of birds seen each autumn is dependent on viewing conditions and the condition of pools visible from the path or hides. Has bred.

19 records up to 1976 mostly in April and May.

One Stodmarsh 21st April 1977

One singing Stodmarsh,9th -11th May 1998

3 together, Grove Ferry 7th Aug 1999

One 12th April 2005

Singing 2nd April 2007

Singing 29th April - 1st May 2007

Singing 14th June 2008


Baillon's Crake

Rare vagrant. Singing male, Grove Ferry 1999

One Grove Ferry at least 6th June to 20th July 1999


Rare visitor. Two records.

One Westbere, Autumn 1959

One Stodmarsh, 13th May 1977


Common resident



Common resident. Max count 885 in Sept 1995


American Coot

Rare visitor. One Stodmarsh 16th to 30th April 1996. First British record

One Stodmarsh, 16th to 30th April 1996

Common Crane

Rare visitor. At least eight records involving 14 birds

One Stodmarsh 2nd to 5th April 1978

One Stodmarsh 20th/21st May 1978

One Grove Ferry and Stodmarsh 16th April to 5th May 2000

4 Grove Ferry 2nd Mar 2002

3 Stodmarsh/Grove Ferry 29th /30th May 2004.

One Stodmarsh 30th April 2006

imm Grove Ferry 10th-14th June 2007

2 Grove Ferry 6th April 2008


Passage migrant. Regularly seen passing through the valley. Birds occasionally linger at Grove Ferry for several days. Max count 3


Black-winged Stilt

Rare visitor, One record

One Stodmarsh, 12th May 1945


Regular visitor to Grove Ferry from March each year. A pair attempted to breed in 2003


Collared Pratincole

Rare visitor, One record

One seen at Stodmarsh and Hersden 11th May, then Grove Ferry 12th/13th May 1998

Little Ringed Plover

Passage migrant and summer visitor. Breeds sporadically at Grove Ferry. Small family groups of up to six birds are regularly present in July and August


Ringed Plover

Regular passage migrant. Birds are often present throughout the summer and may have attempted to have bred. Peak counts tend to be in late May and mid August.

15 Grove Ferry 31st May 1999

20 Grove Ferry, 22nd Aug 1999

28 Grove Ferry, 27th May 2004

39 Grove Ferry 25th May 2008

Kentish Plover

Rare visitor. Two records involving three birds

2 Grove Ferry, 6th July 1961

One Stodmarsh 10th September 1972

American Golden Plover

Rare Visitor, One record. One at Grove Ferry 29th April to 2nd May 1978. Also seen at Westbere on 18th June

One Grove Ferry 29th April to 2nd May 1978, same Westbere 18th June

Golden Plover

Between 50 and 200 birds are regularly seen at Grove Ferry in the winter.


Grey Plover

Scarce but regular visitor. Probably annual since restoration of Grove Ferry

8 Grove Ferry, 27th Jan 1962

6 Grove, 18th Sept 2001

5 Grove Ferry 24th May 2008


Resident. Up to 3,000 birds regularly winter at Grove Ferry. A few pairs breed at Grove and Stodmarsh


Sociable Plover Rare Visitor. One record One Grove Ferry 21st Dec 2007


Rare visitor. Eight records involving 13 birds

4 Stodmarsh 10th Dec 1967

One Stodmarsh 17th Aug 1999

One Gove Ferry 29th Aug 2000

2 Grove Ferry, 13th Sept 2000

2 Grove Ferry 30th Aug 2002

One Grove Ferry, 4th Sept 2004

One Grove Ferry 29th Sept - 3rd Oct 2007

One Grove Ferry 23rd Sept 2008


Rare visitor with possibly only two records

One Grove Ferry 21st May  2000

One Grove Ferry 10th May 2008

Little Stint

Rare spring migrant with occasional records in late May and early June. More regular autumn passage from Aug to Oct each year. One/two were present in the winter 2001/2


Temminck's Stint

Has become a regular passage migrant since the restoration of Grove Ferry in 1999. Annual totals since then include 8 in1999, 3 in 2000, 10 in 2001, 4 in 2002 and at least 8 in 2004. Max count 5 in Aug 1999.

One Stodmarsh 13th May 1996

5 Grove 11th Aug 1999


White-rumped Sandpiper

Rare visitor. Singles at Grove Ferry in 2000, 2002 and 2008

One Grove Ferry 15th Oct 2000

One Grove Ferry 20th July 2002

One Grove Ferry 19th & 20th June 2008

Pectoral Sandpiper

Scarce passage migrant, 13 records. Almost annual since 1999. Two spring record.

One Westbere pre 1976

Singles Grove Ferry 9th Aug 1999, 23rd Aug to 2nd Sept 1999,

17th to 22nd Sept 1999

One Grove Ferry, 16th July 2000

25th Aug to 9th Sept 2000

Grove Ferry, 23rd to 27th May 2002

Grove Ferry, 21st-22nd July 2002

One Grove Ferry, 28th Sept 2003

One Grove Ferry 18th Sept 2005

One Grove Ferry 13th -16th Sept 2007

One Grove Ferry 12th June 2008

One Grove Ferry 7th -19th Oct 2008

Sharp-tailed Sandpiper

Rare visitor. One Record

One Grove Ferry, 30th/ 31st Aug 2001

Curlew Sandpiper

Regular in small numbers in autumn at Grove Ferry. Scarce in spring. A flock of 57 adults occurred after heavy overnight rain on Aug 2004 but departed south late morning

12 Grove Ferry 25th Aug 1999

57 Grove Ferry 10th Aug 2004




Regular at Grove Ferry during passage and in the winter. Formerly used to winter in good numbers at Grove Ferry with 500 in the winters of 1961 and 1972.

48 Grove Ferry 29th Dec 2001


Present throughout the year at Grove Ferry. Peak numbers occur in March/April with up to 50 occurring in the winter months

100 Stodmarsh, 20th April 1962

45 Grove Ferry 30th April 1999

51 Grove Ferry March 2000

52 Grove Ferry Jan 2002


Great Snipe

One Westbere, 9th April 1978

One Westbere, 9th April 1978

Jack Snipe

Small numbers winter Grove Ferry and Stodmarsh



Resident. 16 pairs bred in 1960 but only 2/3 pairs breeding in recent years


Long-billed Dowitcher

Rare visitor. One record. The winter 1999 bird may have been present since Oct 1998 when one was reported from the Marsh hide, Stodmarsh.

A Dowitcher not specifically identified was present at Grove Ferry in 1961 Some of the original observers believe it to have been Short-billed

First winter, Grove Ferry 20th Feb to 24th April 1999

Dowitcher sp, Grove Ferry 29th Oct to 26th Nov 1961




Scare autumn and winter visitor with occasional summer records which might indicate a local breeding population. 23 were flushed from woodland near Stodmarsh in during a period of exceptionally cold weather in Jan 2009


Black-tailed Godwit

Regularly seen at Grove Ferry from April to November

50 Grove Ferry, May 2002

Bar-tailed Godwit

Irregular spring migrant. Some sizable flocks were seen in the late 1980’s and 1990’s but in recent years only occasional singles have been seen.

17 Stodmarsh, 17th April 1988

30 Stodmarsh 21st April 1990

50 Stodmarsh 8th May 1991

13 Stodmarsh, 7th May 1993

Singles Stodmarsh 26th and 29th April 1998

One Grove Ferry  5th May 1999

One 3rd-5th May 2000

One 1st May 2004


Regular passage migrant especially in May



Small numbers, usually single regularly seen passing through the valley. Records occur throughout the year. Up to 75 birds roosted at Grove in February/March 1996

16 Stodmarsh, 13th March 2005

Spotted Redshank

Regular passage migrant in small numbers. Occasional winter records



Breeds at Grove Ferry and in water meadows around the oxbow and Marsh Hide.

33 Stodmarsh/Grove Ferry 16th April 1995

Marsh Sandpiper

Rare visitor. Two records. One Stodmarsh 22nd to 26th April 1987, one Grove Ferry 17th Sept 2000

One Stodmarsh 22nd to 26th April 1987

One Grove Ferry 17th Sept 2000


Regular passage migrant. Peak Count 21 in May 1999

21 Grove Ferry, 5th May 1999

17 Grove Ferry 5th May 2000

12 Grove Ferry Aug 2002

11 Grove Ferry 8th Jul 2004

Green Sandpiper

One or two usually winter in the Stodmarsh/Grove area. Scarce on spring passage. Return autumn passage beings by mid June and peak numbers are reached in late July and early August, when 30 plus birds may be present

36 Grove Ferry, 6th Aug 1999

33 Grove Ferry 28th July 2002

33 Grove Ferry, 3rd Aug 2004

36 Grove Ferry 9th/10th Aug 2007

38 Grove Ferry 28th July 2008

Wood Sandpiper

Regular in small numbers (up to 7) in spring with a heavier passage in the autumn (max 24)

24, Grove Ferry 6th Aug 1999

11 Grove Ferry, 15th Aug 2004

Common Sandpiper

Regular passage migrant in small numbers



Scarce passage migrant

3 Stodmarsh 22nd May 1991

7 Stodmarsh 7th May 1993

3 Stodmarsh 6th May 1999

One Grove 13th May 2000

One Stodmarsh, 17th Aug & 15th Sept 2001

6 Grove Ferry 15th May 2008, one on 16th

Red-necked Phalarope

Rare Visitor. Four records involving five birds

2 Grove Ferry, 26th June 1962

Singles on Ox bow, 21st -25th Aug and 4th -5th Sept 1992

One Grove Ferry 11th -15th Aug 1999

Pomarine Skua

Rare visitor with one record in 1995

One Stodmarsh 3rd Jan 1995

Arctic Skua

Rare visitor Two records

One west over Stodmarsh 30th Oct 1966

One Grove Ferry 14th Jan 2007

Mediterranean Gull

Scarce but increasingly regular visitor . Now averaging over ten sightings a year

One Stodmarsh 5th Nov 1995

One Stodmarsh 17th Aug 1996

One Hersden 7th April 1997

One Stodmarsh 16th Aug 1997

One Stodmarsh 24th Feb 1998

One Grove Ferry 8th Oct 2004

Little Gull

Irregular passage migrant and occasional winter visitor

32 Stodmarsh 20th Dec 1996

Sabine's Gull

Rare Visitor. One record. One, Immature, Stodmarsh 23rd Sept 1997

One, Immature, Stodmarsh 23rd Sept 1997

Black-headed Gull

Present throughout the year but especially abundant in winter


Slender-billed Gull

Rare visitor, One record, adult Grove Ferry 5th May 1999

Adult Grove Ferry 5th May 1999

Common Gull

Common winter visitor and passage migrant


Lesser Black-backed Gull

Regular passage migrant. Very scarce in winter


Herring Gull

Present throughout the year.


Yellow-legged Gull Rare visitor. First recorded in 2007 but several seen since One Cow Corner 17th Nov 2007
Caspian Gull Rare visitor.First recorded in 2007 2 adults 24th Dec 2007 sub adult Collard's 21st Dec 2008

Glaucous Gull

Rare visitor. Four records

One Stodmarsh 31st Mar 1975

One Fordwich 14th Jan 1978,


One Westbere 9th & 25th Jan 1987,

One Stodmarsh 17th Jan 1989

Great Black-backed Gull

Common winter visitor



Rare visitor. Six records

One Westbere 18th June 1978,

One Stodmarsh 2nd Sept 1979

One Grove Ferry 2nd Jan 2004

One Westbere 18th Mar 2006

One Westbere 11th Dec 2007

One Westbere 22nd Feb 2008

Caspian Tern

Rare visitor, four records.

One Stodmarsh, 12th June 1966

One Stodmarsh, 6th Aug 1981

One Stodmarsh and Hersden 15th June 1996

One Stodmarsh, 1st/2nd Aug 1997

Sandwich Tern

Irregular visitor

3 Stodmarsh 27th April 2000

5 Stodmarsh 2nd May 2000 ( 3 on 9th May)

2 Stodmarsh 8th May 2002

2 Stodmarsh, 6th June 2002

One Collard's 27th May 2008

Gull-billed Tern

Rare visitor, One Stodmarsh 22nd Aug 1964

One Stodmarsh 22nd Aug 1964

Common Tern

Summer visitor. Breeds at Stodmarsh (up to 10 pairs) and Grove Ferry (one pair)


Arctic Tern

Scarce passage migrant with possibly only 13 records in last 50 years and a maximum count of only three bird

3 Stodmarsh, 28th July 1969.

Recorded 1968.1969, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1977.1980,

One Fordwich 1st May 2004

2 Collard's 29th Sept- 4th Oct 2007

Juv Collard's/Grove 17th & 24th /25th Aug 2008

One Grove Ferry 7th Sept 2008

Roseate Tern

Rare visitor One record in 1972

One Hersden, 21st Aug 1972


Little Tern

Regular in 1970's when records linked to breeding population at Reculver. Max. 20 Stodmarsh, 30th July 1973. Very scarce in recent years

 One Grove Ferry 29th July 2007

Whiskered Tern

Rare visitor, Three records.

One Stodmarsh, 21st June 1987

One Stodmarsh, 13th May 2001

One Stodmarsh/Collard's 31st May- 5th June 2008

Black Tern

Fairly scarce passage migrant becoming less common in recent years. Not recorded every year.

Max counts 53, 13th May1979

 18 9th May 1989 and 1st Sept 1994

White-winged Black Tern

Rare visitor, five records

One Stodmarsh, 31st May 1973

One Stodmarsh 29th June 1981

(one Stodmarsh 1st Jun 1991)

One Collard’s Lake 24th Aug 1997

One Grove Ferry, 6th Jul 1999

One Grove Ferry, 12 Jul 2000

One Grove Ferry, 18th Oct 2003

Pallas's Sandgrouse

Rare visitor. One record. One Stodmarsh, 28th Dec 1964. What was assumed to be this bird was also seen in Holland

One Stodmarsh, 28th Dec 1964

Feral Pigeon

Seen regularly in valley


Stock Dove

Resident and widespread throughout the valley. Winter flocks of up to 50 birds no uncommon especially between Stodmarsh and Westbere


Wood Pigeon



Collared Dove



Turtle Dove

Declining summer visitor. 200 west at Stodmarsh 15th August 1965


Ring-necked Parakeet Recent Colonist. First record 9th Oct 2005 subsequently breeding at Upstreet. Max count to date eight birds  


Summer visitor. Numbers vary from year to year


Barn Owl

Irregular winter visitor. Occasionally seen at other times of the year


Little Owl

Resident. Possibly three breeding pairs


Tawny Owl

Several calling birds from Stodmarsh/Fordwich Road


Long-eared Owl

Uncommon visitor. Occasionally seen from Lampen Wall at dusk. Roosts of up to five birds have occurred in Stodmarsh area. Occasionally breeds


Short-eared Owl

Rare winter visitor



Bred on coal tip between Stodmarsh and Collard’s until 1987. A single bird was recorded in 1987. One was heard churring in woods above Grove Ferry in May 2004.



Abundant passage migrant summer visitor. Occasional flocks over 2,000 at Stodmarsh and Grove.


Pallid Swift

Rare visitor. One record which was the first British record.

One Stodmarsh, 13th to 24th May 1978


Resident with several birds breeding in the valley. Especially numerous around Westbere and Fordwich



Rare visitor, two records

One Stodmarsh 7th April 1971

One Stodmarsh, 11th May 1976


Rare passage migrant, with seven records but none since 1996

Pair bred Westbere 1958

Pair Westbere, possibly bred 1964

One Stodmarsh 7th Oct 1965

One Stodmarsh, 2nd to 4tth  May 1984

One Stodmarsh, 29th -30th  Aug 1991

One Stodmarsh 28th April 1996

One Stodmarsh 4th Sept 1996

Green Woodpecker



Great Spotted Woodpecker

Resident. At least three pairs breed at Stodmarsh


Lesser Spotted Woodpecker

Formally regular at Stodmarsh and Westbere but scare in recent years. Present in breeding season at Westbere in 2004



Scarce visitor. Three records

One Grove, 24th Aug 1962

One Westbere 2nd Nov 1969

One Stodmarsh 25th Nov 1972

One Grove Ferry 22nd Oct 2008



150 Stodmarsh 1st Nov 1998

Sand Martin

Abundant passage migrant with significant numbers roosting at Stodmarsh/ Grove Ferry in Autumn

600 Stodmarsh 17th May 1994

10,000 Stodmarsh, 20th Aug 1992


Common summer visitor and passage migrant.

20,000 Stodmarsh, 15th Sept 1996

Red-rumped Swallow

Rare spring visitor with at least eight records

One Stodmarsh 20th April 1968

One Stodmarsh, 5th May 1973

One Stodmarsh, 11th May 1975

One Westbere, 14th to 22nd April 1990

One Stodmarsh, 14th -18th June 1991

One Stodmarsh 8th/9th May 1994

One/two Grove Ferry 23rd April 2004

One Grove Ferry, 12th May 2004

(other birds reported 19th April 1988 and in 1996)

House Martin

Regular passage migrant and summer visitor.

10,000 Stodmarsh, 20th Sept 1992

Tawny Pipit

Rare Visitor. One Record

One Stodmarsh, 6th/7th May 1973

Tree Pipit

Scarce passage migrant. Probably once bred in coppiced woodland between Stodmarsh and Fordwich

 One Grove Ferry 8th May 2008

Meadow Pipit

Resident. Small numbers breed in the Grove/Stodmarsh area. Larger numbers winter in the valley especially in fields between Stodmarsh and Grove Ferry


Rock Pipit

Scarce visitor. Three records

One Westbere 6th April 1979, littoralis

One Grove Ferry, 28th Oct 2001

One Grove Ferry 17th Feb 2007

Water Pipit

Regular winter visitor especially at Grove Ferry and in fields and water meadows between Grove and Stodmarsh. Between 4 and 10 birds are usually present

 27 Stodmarsh 5th Mar 2006

30 Grove Ferry 13th Jan 2008

Yellow Wagtail

Regular passage migrant and summer visitor. Small numbers regularly breed. Large flocks can be seen in autumn when birds gather to roost. The record count is 500 birds in Sept 1990.

Blue-headed Wagtails are regularly seen at Grove Ferry on spring and autumn passage

500 Stodmarsh/Grove Sept 1990

230 Grove Ferry, 5th  Sept 2004

Grey Wagtail

Passage migrant in small numbers. Occasional winter records. Breeds on River Stour at Fordwich


Pied Wagtail

Resident. Previously winter roost in the reedbeds at Stodmarsh exceeded 100 birds

225 roosting at Stodmarsh, 22nd Jan 1988


Scarce and irregular visitor

One Stodmarsh 4th Jan 1961

1 – 6  Grove Ferry 15th- - 17th Nov 1999

One Stodmarsh, 18th Dec 2003

One Grove Ferry 5th Nov 2004

12 Grove Ferry 29th/30th Dec 2008


Common resident



Common resident



Common resident



Breeds throughout the valley



Rare passage migrant. Three records all mid/late May

One Stodmarsh, 28th May 1972

One Stodmarsh 17th May 1975

One Stodmarsh, 29th May 2000

Black Redstart

Rare spring migrant with only four records

2/3, 1st to 8th Apr 1977

One Stodmarsh April 1980

Singles March 1996 and 1998


Irregular passage migrant. Previously recorded more regular but relatively scare in recent years.



Scarce spring migrant but regular seen in small numbers in Autumn

10 Stodmarsh/Grove 5th Sept 1997

10 Grove Ferry 3rd Sept 2006

11 Grove Ferry 31st Aug 2007


Regular winter visitor



Regular passage migrant

10 Stodmarsh 24th April 1988

Ring Ouzel

Regular spring migrant, usually seen in fields between Stodmarsh and Grove Ferry. Has been recorded in Autumn






Winter visitor. Large numbers winter in area often feeding the orchards.1000 plus birds usually roost at Stodmarsh. Maximum count involved 4,000 birds on 23rd Oct 1993. Small numbers often linger into early May in fields around Grove Ferry. A late migrant was seen in fields near the oxbow on 5th June 2004


Song Thrush




Winter visitor. Like Fieldfare, flocks roost at Stodmarsh but in much smaller numbers. Good numbers feed in the orchards around Stodmarsh and Grove


Mistle Thrush



Cetti's Warbler

First recorded in 1971 and bred in 1972 (first British breeding record) Breeding numbers increased to around 22 pairs by 1979. After a series of hard winters in the early 1980’s breeding ceased in the late 1980’s and early 1990s and birds were only seen occasionally. Breeding was re-established in 1997 and numbers have increased significantly since with up to 30 singing males in the Stodmarsh/Grove area and breeding birds in the Westbere area.


Grasshopper Warbler

Formerly a regular breeder in small numbers but scarce in recent years. One or two birds seen most years with the occasional singing bird lingering for several days


Savi's Warbler

Formerly a regular summer visitor and breeder with up to 12 signing males in 1965. Breeding has declined and become more irregular. In recent years non breeding birds have arrived at Grove Ferry in June and July and have sung for several days.


Aquatic Warbler

Rare autumn migrant. Four records

One (trapped) Stodmarsh 4th Aug 1989

One trapped Stodmarsh 14th Aug 1994

One Stodmarsh 6th Sept 1998

One Grove Ferry 24th & 31st Aug 1999

Sedge Warbler

Common summer visitor


Marsh Warbler

Very rare and occasional breeder


Reed Warbler

Common summer visitor


Great Reed Warbler

Rare visitor with nine records but only one record since 1978. Four records between 1969 and 1974 may relate to a returning individual

One Stodmarsh 20th May- 1st June 1950

One Stodmarsh, 30th /31st May 1960

One Stodmarsh, 13th June 1965

One Stodmarsh 24th May 1969

One Stodmarsh 18th May 1971

One Stodmarsh 11th Jun 1972

One Stodmarsh 26th May 1974

One Stodmarsh 1st/2nd June 1978

One Grove Ferry,7th June 2002

Lesser Whitethroat

Regular summer visitor, breeds in small numbers.



Breeding summer visitor


Garden Warbler

Breeding summer visitor numbers have increased in recent years



Breeding summer visitor, occasional winter records


Pallas's Warbler

One record, One Stodmarsh 5th November 1988

One Stodmarsh, 5th Nov 1988

Yellow-browed Warbler

Scarce visitor. Two records with a third unsubstantiated record. One wintering bird in 2003/4 was in full song by the time it departed in April

One Stodmarsh Oct 1994

(One Stodmarsh 23rd Dec 2001)

One Stodmarsh, 16th Nov 2003 till 25th Apr 2004

Wood Warbler

Birds occasionally seen on passage.



Present throughout the year. Winter numbers fluctuate, In Jan 2004 10 birds were present at Stodmarsh and a similar number at Fordwich/Westbere


Willow Warbler

Increasingly scarce summer visitor/breeder



Passage migrant and winter visitor. Small numbers may breed in the valley



Scarce passage migrant. Occasionally seen in winter.


Spotted Flycatcher

Decreasing summer visitor/breeder. Family parties at Grove Ferry and Westbere in 2004 suggest there may still be a small local breeding population


Pied Flycatcher

Scarce but regular passage migrant

One Stodmarsh 24th May 1992

One Stodmarsh 12th Jun 1994

One Grove Ferry 14th Jul 1999

One Stodmarsh, 26th Aug 2003

One Grove Ferry, 8th Aug 2004

Bearded Tit

Resident. Number of breeding birds has fluctuated especially after harsh winters. Ringing evidence suggests that some birds leave the valley to winter elsewhere in Kent and southern England. There are also continental recoveries.


Long-tailed Tit

Breeding resident with up to 50 birds present at Stodmarsh in winter months. Breeding numbers have increased in recent years

100 Stodmarsh 8th Dec 1996

Marsh Tit

Formerly widespread resident in woodland in the west of the valley the but no records in recent years

 One Fordwich 18th & 25th Nov 2008

Willow Tit

Probably bred locally. One was seen regularly in winter around the car park at Stodmarsh in the early 1990s


Coal Tit

Scare resident. Occurs in Trenley Park Wood


Blue Tit

Common resident


Great Tit

Common resident



Probably former resident but now very scarce visitor



Resident with up to three pairs breeding at Stodmarsh


Penduline Tit

Rare visitor with at least 10 records. The November 1983 and Mar 84 birds are assumed to relate to the same bird. The 1980 record was the first for Kent and 3rd for Britain

One Stodmarsh, 18th May 1980

One Stodmarsh, 21st Nov 1983

One Stodmarsh, 1st to 25th March 1984

One Stodmarsh 25th Oct 1988

One Westbere, 21st Dec 1988

2 Grove 20th Mar 2005

One Stodmarsh 11th/12th Jan 2006

2 Stodmarsh, 11th Feb 2006

One Stodmarsh 3rd- 7th March 2006

One Grove Ferry 9th Nov 2006

Golden Oriole

Irregular spring visitor usually recorded in late May or early June. Not annual


Isabelline Shrike

One record. One Stodmarsh in 1988 was the second Kent record. Identified as Daurian Shrike

One Stodmarsh 4th -14th Nov 1988

Red-backed Shrike

Rare visitor, eight records since 1976

One Westbere 17th -19th Oct 1976

One Grove Ferry 1st June 1977

One Westbere 29th May 1978

One Stodmarsh, 19th Aug 1982

One Grove Ferry 18th Sept 1989

One Grove Ferry 27th -29th Aug 1999

Male Grove Ferry 3rd -9th July 2007

Male Grove Ferry, 15th July 2008

Great Grey Shrike

Once a regular winter visitor but increasingly scarce and no records since 1999

One Stodmarsh 22nd Jan 1966

One 20th Oct 1966 –Mar 19th 1967One Stodmarsh 22nd Jan -4th Mar 1968

One Stodmarsh 28th Mar 1969

One Stodmarsh 7th Jan 1970

One Stodmarsh 1st Jan 1971

2 Stodmarsh Oct/ Dec 1972

One Stodmarsh 5th Jan -24th Mar 1972

One Fordwich31st Mar 1972

One Stodmarsh/Westbere Jan to 9th Mar 1974One Fordwich 6th Oct 1974One Stodmarsh Jan to 1st April  1975 (2  on 14th Feb)

One Stodmarsh 19th Oct 1975 to 28th Mar 1976

One Stodmarsh 4th Dec 1976

Westbere 24th Oct  -Dec 1978

Stodmarsh/Westbere 20th Jan-18th Mar 1979

One Westbere 23rd Dec 1979

Stodmarsh 23rd/24th Nov1990

Stodmarsh 16th Feb 1991

One Stodmarsh, 8th Oct 1992

One Stodmarsh 8th Nov 92 -21st Mar 1993

One Westbere, 8th Dec 1992

One Stodmarsh 2nd Nov 1993 – 28th Mar 1994

One Stodmarsh 7th /8th Nov 1995

One Stodmarsh, 8th Nov 1999

One Stodmarsh 15th Oct 2007



Common resident



Common resident



Common Resident. Large





Carrion Crow



Hooded Crow

Rare visitor, nine records all between October and March

One Grove Ferry 28th Jan 1967

4 Grove Ferry 23rd Dec 1969

One Stodmarsh, 22nd Jan 1976

One Stodmarsh, 13th Mar 1977

One Stodmarsh 13th Nov 1983

One Stodmarsh, 21st Apr 1991

One Westbere 4th Oct 1997

One Stodmarsh. 18th Mar 2004

One Grove Ferry 3rd Jan 2005


One record. One Fordwich, 2nd Sept 1968. Part of a national invasion during 1968

One Fordwich, 2nd Sept 1968


Resident and winter visitor. Huge numbers roost in reed beds at Grove in autumn and winter

40,000 roosting at Stodmarsh Oct 1995

House Sparrow

Resident but decreasing. A health population still exists in Stodmarsh Village and around Grove


Tree Sparrow

10 to 11 pairs bred at Stodmarsh until 1988 but declined sharply after that and breeding ceased in 1995. Small numbers occurred around Stodmarsh Village but has become a very scare visitor in recent years



Common resident and winter visitor



Scarce passage migrant in March/ April and Oct/Nov with occasional winter records



Common resident



Winter visitor, passage migrant and resident



Regularly winters in the Alder wood at Stodmarsh but numbers vary significantly from year to year. Peak count 240 in January 1998



Passage migrant and summer breeder but scarce in winter



Scarce visitor, four records

2 Grove Ferry 29th Nov 1953

10 Stodmarsh Feb 1960

One Grove 28th Dec 1962

5 Stodmarsh 26th Nov 1997


Lesser Redpoll

Regular winter flock in the Stodmarsh alder wood. Numbers vary from year to year. Bred up until 1990

Good numbers also recorded at Westbere in some years


Mealy Redpoll

Irregular visitor usually associated with wintering flocks of Lesser Redpolls

One Stodmarsh 24th March 1973

8 Fordwich, 6th Nov 1978

One Westbere, 6th Jan & 22nd Feb 1979

2 Stodmarsh 21st Oct & 2nd Dec 1979

One Fordwich  Jan 1987

One Stodmarsh Jan and Mar 1992

3 Stodmarsh 31st Feb 1996

1/2 Stodmarsh 21st Jan to 14th Mar 2004



Scarce visitor but probably under recorded


Common Rosefinch

Rare visitor. One record.

One Stodmarsh, 6th June 1993


Resident with up to four breeding pairs at Stodmarsh



Rare visitor, One record

One Stodmarsh 3rd June 1998

One Grove Ferry 6th Dec 2005

One Collard's 12th Nov 2008

Lapland Bunting

Rare visitor, At least two records including 3 in the early 1960s


Snow Bunting

Rare visitor. Six records but none since 1978

60 apparently to roost at Stodmarsh in Nov 1962

60 Stodmarsh 25th Nov 1962

One Stodmarsh, 4th Oct 1969

5 Stodmarsh 31st Oct 1971

2 Stodmarsh 12th Dec 1973

2 Stodmarsh 8th Jan 1975

One Stodmarsh, 31st Oct 1976

One Stodmarsh, 17th Dec 1978


Resident but declining


Cirl Bunting

One record

One Grove 1st Jan 1962

Reed Bunting

Abundant resident. Up to 60 breeding pairs at Stodmarsh


Corn Bunting

Resident. Until recently large numbers roosted at Stodmarsh near the Lampen Wall. Probably breeds near Grove Ferry and above Stodmarsh Village

300 Stodmarsh, Dec 1971