December 9, 2013

Huge decline in British birds

Guardian, UK - Some of Britain's most familiar countryside birds have plummeted in numbers since the 1990s, and some species have disappeared from parts of the UK, according to an authoritative annual report.

Numbers of the farmland-dwelling grey partridge have halved since 1995, while the turtle dove has declined by 95%. The yellow wagtail, which inhabits farm and wetland, has declined by 45% over the same period.

The State of the UK's Birds report, from the RSPB, the British Trust for Ornithology, the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust and several UK government nature bodies, shows that of the UK's 107 most widespread and common breeding birds, 16 species have declined by more than a third since 1995, including the willow tit, starling, cuckoo, lapwing and wood warbler.

Many of these species do not require highly managed landscapes such as nature reserves or protected areas, but are once common birds that live in the "wider countryside", in farmland, open country, commons, woodlands or local country parks.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

If only all the Starlings in the US could be sent to the UK. We have too many of those non native birds.

Anonymous said...

Sure there's a cascade of reasons but one might be: when my last cat died the songbird population around my farm increased a hundredfold. Just sayin'.
Susan McGuinness

Anonymous said...

All those birds are canaries. I wonder when we'll recognise that.