Clee Hill Bird Group

The Clee Hill bird group was established in February 2012 by Leo Smith with the initial aim of surveying the local area for lapwing, curlew and other target bird species. Such surveys have been completed each year since (see full reports below), and the group will be repeating the same survey again each year in the foreseeable future. The bird group will also develop other activities and events as members wish.

Bird Walk for Bird Song – Sunday 13 May at 7.30am

bird song walk pic(Leader: Gareth Thomas) Meet at The Novers car park (on the right on the way downhill on the B4214 south from Clee Hill village at OS Grid ref. SO597738).

See, listen to, and identify the birds singing in the Novers Limeworks Wood.

Finish around 9.15am.

All welcome

Curlew and Lapwing Surveying

Curlew in flight

Lapwing and Curlew are declining rapidly, in the Clee Hill area and elsewhere. The Bird Group set out to find out how many are left here. We also looked for another 19 target species. Most of these birds are easy to recognise, so volunteers needed interest and enthusiasm rather than expertise. They were asked to visit an Ordnance Survey map square three times between the end of March and mid June, for around three hours each visit. Survey maps and instructions were provided, and some joined us on an outdoor practical training session before the start.

Lapwing and Curlew survey 2012-2017

We have been looking for local Curlews since 2012, when we found around 13 pairs. The 9 pairs found in 2017 represents a 31% decline in only six years. As far as we know, only one young fledged. Curlews are in danger of disappearing altogether, unless action is taken to help them.

There was better news of breeding Lapwings in 2017. We found 2-4 pairs, the first for 3 years, all near Hollywaste.

  • Full detailed reports on the 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 surveys compiled by Leo Smith are available here: 

  2012 Report        2013 Report         2014 Report         2015 Report         2016 Report   

 2017 Report – Full        2017 Report – Summary



Everyone interested in birds is welcome at all meetings and events.

Anyone who wishes to take part should contact Leo Smith. We need more helpers so please get involved if you can.


Barn Owls


Barn Owl


For more information on helping local barn owls and getting involved in a nest box scheme please view this document. Please let us know about any confirmed local sightings of barn owls; contact Chris, email:



Page updated: 03/02/2018 by CB