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Outdoor Meetings

Outdoor Meetings for 2024

General Information

The following events are scheduled, but some details may change. Please check this page in the run-up to events or confirm by emailing the organiser of each meeting.

Most meetings will last 2-3 hours, but please email the organiser if you require more exact timings.

The events are free to members, but there will be a £2.00 fee for non-members. You may have a free first outdoor meeting with us to see if you enjoy our walks, then £2 per walk after that (or consider joining CHOG, which will give you free outdoor and indoor meetings for the whole year).
Payment is via the donate button on the CHOG Shop section of this website or by online payment to CHOG sort code 30-92-02, account number 02700708 or with cash on the day, please. Thank you.

OS grid references can be used to find the location on and what3words locations used on

For general enquiries about meetings, please contact Richard Cordery

Each outdoor meeting will be documented shortly after its date and posted to CHOG Online – see the CHOG Online page for how to connect.

The aim is to provide members who were unable to attend, or those who want to visit again, the opportunity to go birdwatching at the location themselves and try to find (or improve upon!) the variety of species encountered by the organised meeting. We shall endeavour to post an account of each meeting within two weeks of it taking place.

Sunday 14th January 09:00-12:00

Keyhaven and Pennington Marshes

An approximately 3 hour walk along the sea wall to the lagoons and back up. We will be looking for wading birds, ducks and geese in particular and a telescope would be very useful if you have one.

Meet at the Keyhaven Long Stay Car Park opposite The Gun Inn, near the toilet block SZ 306914:
Grid reference from Grid Reference Finder SZ 306915 click here
What3words link
Shown as “Keyhaven Amenity Car Park” on GoogleMaps   click here

There are 2 car parks at Keyhaven. The one I have recommended is the Long Stay Car Park, RingGo location 2588. Parking is £5 for 4 hours, which should be plenty of time as I am aiming to get us back to the car park by 12 noon. There is some limited free on-road free car parking opposite the Gun Inn at this time of year. The short stay car park (by the sea wall up the lane) is RingGo location 22596 but the maximum stay is 3 hours and this also costs £5 so I would not recommend using this unless the long stay one is full (which is unlikely in my experience).

Please book by emailing Richard


Sunday 4th February 10:00-13:00
Birds of Poole Harbour Winter Safari Cruise

A three-hour boat trip embracing the safari experience, led by Birds of Poole Harbour staff, scouring the harbour for our hardy overwintering species from otherwise inaccessible areas such as the Wareham Channel and Frome Valley, as well as offering premier views behind the Brownsea Lagoon seawall. The exact route will be determined on the day, taking into account the state of the tide and latest sightings, to maximise the birding potential of the cruise.

This cruise has now been fully booked for the CHOG group and also on the BoPH website. You can join a waitlist for this date via their website:

If you manage to get a place then please let Richard know. 

Please let Richard know if you join their waitlist and he will also add you to his waitlist and if anyone in the CHOG group has to pull out then he will let you know.

There is also availability on many other dates in the New Year if you are unable to join us on 4th February. See the BoPH website as above to book on these.


Sunday 18th February 14.00-16.00
Stanpit Marsh

An afternoon walk out to Crouch Hill to look for wading birds and probably then on round the rest of the Marsh looking for other wintering birds.

Please meet on Stanpit Recreation Ground, just next to the Stanpit Marsh car park:

Grid reference from Grid Reference Finder SZ171924

Grid Reference Finder link click here

what3words silks.other.jungle  click here

Google Maps link click here

Please book by emailing Richard


Saturday 9th March 08:00-12:00
Acres Down

A short walk up to the viewpoint out over the Forest, starting at 9.00am, with the option to have a short walk into Wick Wood starting at 8.00am to look and listen for woodland birds before this.

Meet at Acres Down Forestry England car park for each walk:
Google Maps link   click here
Grid Reference from Grid Reference Finder SU267097
Grid Reference Finder  click here
what3words awkward.uttering.discusses click here

Parking is either at the Forestry England car park (which is quite small) or more spaces immediately just past Acres Down Farm in the open area to the left of the track, before you get to the car park. There is a fairly steep walk at the start of the walk up to the viewpoint but fairly level after that.

Please book by emailing Richard and please let him know which of the start times you would like to join the walk.


Sunday 7th April 09:00-12:00
Hengistbury Head
Please note change of venue from Stanpit Marsh

Meet opposite the Hengistbury Head Visitor Centre on the rise overlooking the Harbour at grid reference SZ166911
Grid reference finder link See here.
what3words link See here.
Google Maps link See here.
Parking at Hengistbury Head Car Park (charges apply) See here.

Payment is by card, phone or RingGo App (location 59021) only. The ticket machines do not accept cash. Parking in Rolls Drive or the Solent Meads Golf Club car park (2 lanes nearest the road only) is unlimited at this time of year but is quite a long walk to the Visitor Centre from there. Parking in Broadway is a 1 hour time limit after 10.00am so you would need to leave the walk early if parking here, to get back to your car before 11.00am.

Please book by emailing Richard


Saturday 4th May 06:00-09:00
New Forest

Early morning birdsong walk.  Location and further details to be announced when available.

Breakfast at The Cat and Fiddle, Hinton Admiral at 9.00am for those who would like to join us after the walk.

Please let Richard know if you would like to book for breakfast too when you book for the walk.

Please book by emailing Richard


Saturday 18th May
Salisbury Plain

Visit to the Great Bustard Group, starting at Enford Village Hall, Longstreet, Enford, Wiltshire. SN9 6DD 09.30am, involving a 2 hour tour of the site in Land Rovers with stops to see the Bustards and learning all about the project as we go around.

This will be followed by visit to the site of the Hen Harrier reintroduction project run by Natural England at Parsonage Down, meeting at 12.30pm for lunch (please bring your own packed lunch) followed by a tour of the site. There will be no Hen Harriers there at the time, but we will hear all about the project from Natural England staff.

Great Bustard Group tour costs £25.
THIS IS NOW FULLY BOOKED but please let Richard know if you would like to go on the waiting list in case there are any cancellations. There is still availability for the afternoon part of this trip.

Hen Harrier reintroduction site visit can accommodate a maximum of 15 cars in the car park, so car sharing is encouraged, if you are happy to do so. No charge for this part of the day but I will ask if we can give donations to the project.

You may book for either event alone or for both, depending on availability. Please book by emailing Richard

If time allows after the we may go on to the RSPB Winterbourne Downs reserve to look for Stone Curlews on the way back home.


Sunday 19th May 07:00
Beginners Birdsong Workshop

This is an outdoor workshop for members only to learn how to identify birds primarily by song, also to understand the difference between song and calls.
Led by Dave Taylor.  Length: approximately 2.5 hours. Cost: £5

For more info and how to book click here…


Saturday 10th August 10:00-12:30 (guided walk) with option to stay on for lunch and an afternoon walk there.
Arne RSPB reserve

RSPB guides will give us a guided walk in small groups around the reserve with the possibility of visiting parts of the reserve not normally open to the public.

We have been permitted to use the benches at the café for eating packed lunches if you wish to bring one, or to purchase food from the café there, if you would like to stay on for this. We can spend the afternoon having a further walk around other parts of the reserve. Cost for the guided walk is going to be in the region of £10 per person (the more people attending, the cheaper it will be). This includes parking and entry (car-sharing is encouraged if you are happy to do so). Non-RSPB members normally pay £5 entry fee per person at the reserve and the RSPB have said that if any non-members would like to donate £5 to the RSPB then this would be most welcomed, but it is not mandatory.

Please meet in the reserve car park at 09.45, grid reference SY971876

Grid reference finder link See here.
what3words link See here.
Google Maps link See here.

Please book by emailing Richard

Car Sharing
We encourage car sharing for outdoor meetings where possible for environmental reasons and to assist with parking, especially as car-parks at some venues have limited space. If you have friends or family coming along to the meetings, please make arrangements for car sharing yourselves, but only if you are happy to do this in the current Coronavirus situation and with adequate precautions where necessary.

Harbour Map

Our interactive harbour map helps you to identify locations around the harbour and gives some useful pointers.

Harbour Map

Our interactive harbour map helps you to identify locations around the harbour and gives some useful pointers.