The BOS covers a diverse range of habitats, from low level floodlands of the river Cherwell to the heights of Edge Hill and the Cotswolds. It also spans three major river systems of England - the Thames, Severn and Great Ouse. For a map of the area, see BOS area map.

As part of our fieldwork, we publish a detailed map showing the locations of recommended bird watching sites - see BOS Sites. The names of the sites are given in the BOS Guide for Observers.

Note that the BOS area will be affected by the construction of HS2 - see this article for details: HS2 Route Across the BOS.

The table below lists the top 10 sites ranked by the number of species observed, for the years 2007-2016. Many of these sites are reserves managed by the BOS and most are associated with water. Our reserves are listed here: BOS Reserves.

  Grid Number of Species Site Name
1 SP4542 148 Grimsbury Reservoir
2 SP4953 145 Boddington Reservoir
3 SP3942 143 Balscote Quarry
4 SP4451 139 Wormleighton Reservoir
5 SP5721 119 Bicester Wetland Reserve
6 SP4643 112 Upper Cherwell Valley
7 SP3226 96 Glyme Farm
8 SP4541 95 Spiceball Country Park
9 SP4249 94 Farnborough Park
10 SP3558 91 Chesterton Pools

 

The picture below shows the species density for each 1km square of the BOS area for the years 1982-2016 - the shading of the square reflects the number of species recorded. The figures in each square show the number of species recorded at that location. The numbers on the outside are the OS 1km grid references for the 100km square SP, shown as Eastings and Northings, just as they are on Ordnance Survey maps. The map shows there are many other good locations to observe birds, including the whole of the Cherwell valley.

Species Density 1982 2016

Updated 26th March 2020

Due to the current Covid 19 outbreak, the BOS has cancelled the April and May indoor meetings. If the current travel & social distancing restrictions remain in place or increase, we will also have to cancel the outdoor meetings scheduled for June through August. Read more ...

This meeting has been postponed due to the COVID-19 restrictions. We will reschedule this meeting when social gathering restrictions have been lifted.

Ecology and conservation of the Sociable Lapwing. -  Rob Sheldon

Please note this is 1 week earlier than usual because of Easter

The Sociable Lapwing has suffered huge declines in range and population and is now listed as critically endangered.  RSPB is working with a number of partners on the breeding grounds in Kazakhstan and on the migration routes and wintering areas in the Middle East and Africa to work out why this enigmatic and beautiful species has declined. Read more ...

COVID-19 Update 25th March 2020: This survey will not go ahead this year due to government travel restrictions.

A survey of breeding birds, conducted using 3 visits over 3 months to a random 1km square. Read more ...

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