Hoopoe Upupa epops

Horsley's Green, Nr Stokenchurch - 15th May 2011

Photos copyright Jim Rose

This individual was first seen  at 8am feeding in a paddock at Gibbon's Farm at Horsleys Green, by a resident of the farm.  It was reported via Lee Evans with news breaking mid-afternoon.

The bird had apparently been feeding in a large horse paddock all day and seemed to have no trouble in finding grubs to eat (as the second photo shows).  At one point the bird appeared to go to sleep, as it remained motionless with eyes closed for over five minutes (see lower photo).  Late in the evening the bird flew up into the trees at the back of the paddock but did eventually reappear and was last seen at approximately 20:10.  Over six local birders managed to see the bird before dusk.  It was not seen the following day.

Thanks to the landowner for allowing access to the site and making birders very welcome.

To see a chart showing the distribution of records - click here to view.

Flackwell Heath - 22nd April 2007

Photos copyright Richard Cordingley

This bird was feeding in a garden in Northern Woods Road, Flackwell Heath for one day only.

Central Milton Keynes - 7th-9th April 2005

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Photos copyright Mike Collard

This bird was found late on 7th and unfortunately left fairly early on 9th (which was a Saturday).  It was found on "the" migrant hot-spot in central Milton Keynes, which is apparently due for development.  It was one of the few twitchable Hoopoes and was seen by quite a few local birders.  If it had stayed over the weekend, no doubt it would have had many more admirers. 

Towersey, Oxon -  May 2004

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Photos copyright Frederic Desmette

This bird was present on private land from 1st until 11th May at least.  While it spent nearly all of it's stay just in Oxfordshire, it apparently did fly into Bucks on several occasions.   

Bledlow Ridge - 31st May 2003

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Photo courtesy Christopher Gee

A often happens with this species, this individual was photographed on a lawn, albeit in a very rural area.   The bird was photographed at around 1:00pm and seen at 9:00pm on the same day, on nearby Lodge Hill.  Despite searching the bird could not be found on the following day.

Marsh Gibbon  - 17th May 1998

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Photo copyright Robin Logan

This individual was photographed in a Marsh Gibbon garden.  Unfortunately it only stayed for about two hours.  The Hoopoe is a rare vagrant to the county with perhaps one record a year on average.  Rather surprisingly a pair bred in a Taplow garden in 1916!

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