35 Birds I'd Like to See in 2012.

Bean Goose
Ruddy Shelduck
Red-breasted Goose
Velvet Scoter
Green-winged Teal
Black Grouse
White-tailed Eagle
Quail
Honey Buzzard
Rough-legged Buzzard
Stone Curlew
Great Shearwater
Jack Snipe (21st Jan.)
Common Crane (7th Apr.)
Caspian Gull
Glaucous Gull
Roseate Tern
Long-eared Owl
Tawny Owl
Hoopoe
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (26th Feb.)
Citrine Wagtail
Woodlark
Shore Lark (7th Apr.)
Water Pipit (29th Feb.)
Nightingale (6th May)
Icterine Warbler
Grasshopper Warbler
Crested Tit
Bearded Tit (19th Feb.)
Penduline Tit
Chough
Common / Mealy Redpoll
Red-backed Shrike
Bee-eater

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"Chris Berry, can I start by asking your name?"

"Certainly."

"Chris Berry, what's your name?"

"Chris Berry."

"How did you get into birding?"

"Through the persistence - both before and after he died - of my Grandfather. He birded with his wife for most of his adult life. I still love passing on news of my sightings to my Grandmother."

"Where do you bird locally?"

"Along the river - Saul, Frampton, Slimbridge, Sharpness and as far as Aust and Northwick Warth. Hawling and Cleeve Hill nearer Cheltenham. Coombe Hill and Witcombe nearer Gloucester. All the usual spots in the Forest - my favourites are Boys Grave, New Fancy View and Nagshead."

"And further afield?"

"I thought you might ask this. If it's convenient, the Pickering and Filey area (North Yorkshire), the Exe estuary and Dawlish (Devon), Chew Valley and Blagdon Lakes and Ham Wall / Shapwick Heath (both Somerset), Farmoor and Otmoor (Oxfordshire), Pagham Harbour, Calshot, the Solent and the New Forest (all Hampshire) and the Isles of Scilly (visit every other year). These are my favourite haunts if I'm birding away from Gloucestershire."

"Do you twitch?"

"I will, yes. It has to be something that really excites me (not a dodgy split), though. On a single day (there and back) I've been as far as Suffolk (dipping a Lesser Kestrel), Cornwall (American Bittern) and Blacktoft Sands RSPB (near Goole) for a Marsh Sandpiper."

"What lists do you keep?"

"A UK life list, a UK year list and a Scilly list. All BOU. I haven't been abroad enough (other than when I was young) to worry about a world list. I really should keep a Gloucestershire list, but I know that if I did that I would also feel obliged to keep lists for every other county. Which would be ridiculous."

"What's your favourite birding moment?"

"September 2010, St. Mary's airport. My plane lands on the island and within two minutes of picking up my luggage (read: scope, bins and tripod) I was watching a Lesser Grey Shrike. A great moment, and really aided in the memorability stakes by the fact that a couple of hours later I hopped on a boat over to Tresco to see a Wilson's Phalarope on the Great Pool. Both were lifers."

"And the worst?"

"The aforementioned Lesser Kestrel. A big miscalculation. Although I got a few other great birds on the trip, that was an expensive dip."

"What has birding taught you?"

"Cost-benefit analysis."

"Your favourite bird?"

"The female Marsh Harrier."

"Least favourite?"

"Anything I should've laid eyes on by now, but haven't. For example... Tawny Owl or Grasshopper Warbler."

Boo!