Somerset Birding News

Somerset Ornithological Society has launched a new public wide survey investigating the abundance and distribution of two well-known but declining birds seen throughout Somerset: the Kingfisher and Little Owl.

Following on from findings of the Somerset Bird Atlas of breeding and wintering birds 2007–12, the survey aims to build a detailed picture from target and casual observational records into possible causes for decline, including climatic effects, habitat degradation and food resource depletion.

For full details, click here.

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We are pleased to announce the launch of the new Devon Bird Atlas 2007-2013 on Friday 29th January.
For more information on the Atlas, click here.

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The British Trust for Ornithology and Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust have recently started a project to understand more about the home ranges of three species of waders (Curlew, Redshank and Dunlin) and a range of duck species on the Severn Estuary between Newport and Cardiff. As part of this work the Redshank and Curlew have been colour ringed and Dunlin and some ducks marked with yellow dye. In addition state-of-the-art tracking devices have been put on some of the Curlew, Redshank and Shelduck, which is providing fascinating information about how birds use the estuary through the winter during both the day and the night. Work is ongoing, with the aim to mark more birds of these species and additional duck species during January and February.
The BTO have asked us and other societies to publicise the project. Full details may be obtained by clicking here. This blog also has information on the project.

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The BTO are seeking volunteers for their Non-Estuarine Waterbirds Survey in Somerset. There are some vacant sectors just east of Watchet. All that is required is a single visit before the end of January, to record the birds and mammals that you see. The focus is on the intertidal zone, though you can record birds from adjacent land and sea too. Counts are best made around low tide. If you are interested, please visit www.bto.org/webs-news or contact Eve Tigwell.

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This item is published at the request of British Birds magazine.
Many members of the Society will already be subscribers to British Birds or may have taken up trial offers. Whether or not, you may like to receive their free e-newsletter every month. This offers a flavour of what has been published recently and what is in the pipeline in areas such as book of the month, news and comment, the rarities section and special offers.
This is a new initiative from one of Britain’s leading birding publications. It covers the UK and Western Palearctic and has been the birdwatchers’ journal of record since 1907. It is read and recommended by many amateur and professional ornithologists, writers and photographers with Simon King stating that ‘British Birds is the gold standard of ornithological literature in the UK’.
To receive the newsletters, just log on to www.britishbirds.co.uk and complete the sign up form at the bottom of the page. Give it a try.

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