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News - Bird News

The Society and BTO are carrying out a joint survey of Rookeries in the county between 1st March and 30th April.

Somerset is a well-wooded county with plenty of livestock farms, suggesting that Rooks should be a relatively common farmland bird in the county. During the Somerset Atlas of breeding and wintering birds 2007 – 2012, confirmed breeding records of Rooks were received from 53% of tetrads in the County.  However, since then records of rookeries reported in Somerset Birds are very few and far between. Are we failing to record most of our Rookeries, or have they simply vanished from the County?  We need to check, so here is the BTO Somerset & SOS Rookery Survey! 

For further details, go to

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Back in December 2018 we published information about a request for crowdfunding for a documentary on the Nightingale. Soon afterwards, we were able to report that the funding had been successful.

We are delighted to report that the film will be premiered at the 2020 Virtual Birdfair on Thursday 20th August.

The makers are also in the process of auctioning a piece of artwork created for the film, a one of a kind piece by street artist ATM called ‘The Nightingale & The Bomber’. They have added a nice little excerpt from the film telling the story behind the piece, which you can see here: The current bid stands at £3,000. The auction will end on Sunday 23rd August at 18:00.

The auction was launched on Friday morning on Chris Packham & Megan McCubbin’s show, The SIBC, which you can catch up on here:

There are still some prints left too, for those who may not have space for the original!

The film will appear here when launched:

Finally, a short behind the scenes interview on the creation of the film was shot, which will also be going live at the virtual Birdfair on Thursday 20th August, here: 

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The Bittern Monitoring Programme has published a summary of the 2018 breeding season. The number of booming males in Somerset has increased from 49 to 55, and the county had the highest figures.

For the full report, 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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