Input from the BTO representative Dave Sharpe
The well-established, known heronries in this area are counted annually
and have been for many years. However,
there are smaller heronries, some of them transient, starting up all the time
e.g. Bolton-le-Sands 2-3 pairs for the last three years.
So if you know of or suspect a small heronry being in existence, please
let me know as soon as possible (822492)
Nest Record Scheme
Many thanks to the members who continue to support this long-running
scheme which plays such a vital role in the way the BTO can interpret population
changes and trends. Cards, as
usual, are available from Dave Sharpe at the 27th March meeting or by
phone if you happen to miss it (822492). Please
contact Dave if you are unsure about disturbance tolerance of any particular
species you are covering.
Breeding Bird Survey
At present around 2,300 1km squares are being covered throughout the
country, 10 of these by members of the society. However, there are still 7 plots which have been
allocated and as yet have not been able to cover.
survey method involves two visits, ideally in the morning, and an additional
initial visit to record the habitat and work out the survey route – ideally
two parallel(ish) 1km transects split into 200 metre lengths.
On the survey visit, every bird seen or heard from each length is counted
and recorded. Please contact Dave Sharpe for more detailed instructions.
1km squares are:
4464 Centred on
Morecambe High School
6262 An upland square
on Goodber Common between High Salter and Thrushgill
Based on Greta Foot. This is
an important square to continue as it has already been started
but the participant has had to give up
Based on High/Low Thrushgill
Just north of Ireby and east of Leck
East of Gaitbarrows (Brackenthwaite Farm)
I know I said 7! The 7th
is SD4378 which at best would require wellies and at worst an aqualung, snorkel
or anti-quicksand spray. The BTO
random selection computer cannot read maps and this square is in the middle of
the Kent Estuary between Arnside and Grange.
The demise of the Common Bird Census
Unfortunately, the year 2000 will be the last year for the CBC now that
the BBS is fully up and running and entering its 7th year.
The BBS employs random sampling and therefor achieves a far better
coverage of the UK than the CBC. The
two schemes have run in parallel for so long to enable long term trends in bird
abundance from the two to be linked together.
Government (through JNCC) is not in a position to fund the two parallel schemes,
so, unfortunately, funding for the CBC will not be available after March 2001
i.e. after 2000’s data has been analysed.
many thanks to all of you who have undertaken
CBC work over the years, especially Brian Townson who has been the stalwart of
the scheme in this area for so many years.
Survey 2000 (BTO)
aim of this important survey is to cover all the 568 1km squares within which
the Institute of Terrestrial Ecology has undertaken field surveys of land use in
1998 and 1999. A transect method
will be used that is very similar to the BBS.
However, as ITE has the bulk of the habitat survey, you will not be
required top do this (apart from notifying any obvious recent changes of land
survey is for one year only, hopefully repeated at 10 year intervals.
We are likely to have three squares to cover, so if you think you would
be able or would like to help, please contact Dave Sharpe.
Goose Survey (BTO and WWT)
survey will focus on Canada and feral Greylag Geese but will also include other
species, including escapes, exotics and hybrids.
This will provide an update of numbers and distribution since the last
national survey in 1991. However,
unlike the 1991 survey which just covered moult sites, counts will also be made
of birds in randomly selected tetrads during the breeding season.
Most of the first part of the survey will be covered already by the
existing WEBS counts/counters. However,
it is the second (tetrad) part that hopefully many of you will be able to
contribute to. Essentially, all
that is required is a count of all breeding geese.
have been allocated 18 tetrads, but I’m sure we will be able to cover most. Maps will appear at the last meeting(s).
The selected tetrads are:
North of Winmarleigh
Between Middleton and Sunderland
NE of Cockerham
N of Halton Camp/M6 junction
Scorton gravel pits/Street Bridge
West end of Marshaw Fell
Caton, River Lune
SE of Over Kellett
E of Higher and Lower Thrushgill
S of Kirkby Lonsdale
counts (WWT, not coastal)
thanks to all those who help with the counts.
I’ll send out the new forms as soon as possible i.e. when I receive
them. Could everyone please return
their forms for the last winter a.s.a.p. and then I can get them sorted,
totalled etc. in plenty of time for Ken and the Annual Report.
Heysham/outer Lune Estuary area team is still short of at least one person for
the ‘pool’. We meet at the
Nature reserve hut two hours before the tide and sort out the counts depending
on the tide height. You will not
suddenly be given a huge flock of Knot or Oystercatcher to count on your own!
Please contact Pete Marsh (01524/66775)
Birdwatching trip reports