Welcome to the British Ornithologists’ Club


The BOC’s objects are to advance education in the subject of ornithology for the benefit of the public by promoting scientific discussion between members and others interested in ornithology and to facilitate the dissemination of scientific information concerned with ornithology, and in particular avian systematics, taxonomy and distribution.


The BOC produces a Bulletin four times a year. Up to the end of 2016 hard copies were sent to all members. However, from 2017 the Bulletin became an open access online-only publication available for viewing and download at BioOne (click on the button in the right sidebar). We will continue to list the table of contents of each issue at the Bulletin Index page where you will also find the contents from earlier issues.

NOTE: The latest issue of the BOC Bulletin (Vol. 140, No. 3 – September 2020) is now available for viewing or download. You can view the table of contents, abstracts and references, full text or downloadable PDFs of individual papers as well as the complete issue at the BioOne Complete website. You can also view the table of contents and download a PDF for the complete issue on the BOC website.

This issue contains nine papers of wide interest ranging from An updated checklist of the birds of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil, with comments on new, rare, and unconfirmed species by François Sagot-Martin, Rafael Dantas Lima, José Fernando Pacheco, Jorge Bañuelos Irusta, Mauro Pichorim & David Maurice Hassett to Temminck’s Gallus giganteus; a gigantic obstacle to Darwin’s theory of domesticated fowl origin? by Hein van Grouw & Wim Dekkers and The immature plumage of Ocellated Poorwill Nyctiphrynus ocellatus (Caprimulgidae) by Thiago V. V. Costa & Johan Ingels.

Meetings update

As previously announced and owing to the Corvid-19 pandemic, the 2020 meetings programme has had to be substantially adjusted. The current situation is that Professor Diamond’s talk, in conjunction with the Linnean Society has been deferred, subject to his availability, until a date in 2021.

The talk scheduled for 16 November, which again had been planned in conjunction with the Linnean Society and at their premises, is intended to be by Professor John Fjeldså, University of Copenhagen, on the subject of the evolution of passerine birds. This talk had been designed to celebrate the 1,000th evening meeting of the BOC but, should it go ahead, will now be slightly ahead of the anniversary given the forced cancellation of previous 2020 meetings! At present, we remain very hopeful that this event will still occur on schedule via Zoom, but it is clearly too early to state anything definitively so please keep checking this website for updates.


The BOC holds regular meetings, mostly in central London (see the Meetings page for location and directions). The meetings are normally free and non-members are welcome.