New report finds a third of Welsh birds are declining

A new partnership report, State of Birds in Wales 2018, has shown that a third of our breeding and wintering bird species are declining significantly – emphasising the urgent conservation need to protect some of our most iconic species. The State of Birds in Wales 2018 report is a one-stop shop of results from annual, periodic and one-off bespoke surveys across Wales. It has been produced by The British Trust for Ornithology (BTO), the Welsh Ornithological Society (WOS), Natural Resources Wales (NRW) and RSPB Cymru. Most bird monitoring in Wales is undertaken by volunteers who contribute over 5,000 hours of their expertise every year in surveys utilised in this report. Citizen science plays a crucial role in saving Wales’ species from extinction and there are plenty of opportunities for people to get involved, helping with the science, through practical intervention or by showing support for wildlife across Wales. To find out more about how you can get involved, please visit the websites of the organisations behind the report. Please read the full report here.

Shooting of Greenland White-fronted geese will now be banned in Wales

WOS has welcomed the decision by Environment Minister Hannah Blythyn that the shooting of the endangered Greenland Whitefronted Goose is to be banned in Wales. Numbers of this rare sub-species have declined drastically over the last few years and the population wintering in Wales is restricted to two areas – the Dyfi Estuary and a small group on Anglesey. You can read details of the Minister’s decision here.

Scarce sightings during November 2018

Not a vintage month, but Siberian migrants continued to be represented, with another Siberian Lesser Whitethroat (pictured above) and a Siberian Chiffchaff. Highlights included Anglesey’s first Lesser Scaup, a splendid Rough-legged Buzzard in Snowdonia, an Isabelline Shrike and a late Red-rumped Swallow. Uncommon winter visitors were in good numbers, with Slavonian Grebes and Water Pipits particularly prominent. You can read Robin Sandham’s full round-up here.

Fighting to keep Curlews

There is some good news – the Welsh Government is going to provide some emergency funding for Curlew Cymru. Meanwhile, have a look at this inspirational film with a Radnorshire famer and Tony Cross on the hazards that our Curlew face. Watch the film here.

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Events for birdwatchers in Wales

Dec
15
Sat
Gwent Ornithological Society : Indoor Meeting – Focus on Nature, an illustrated talk by Chris Hatch.
Dec 15 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Focus on Wildlife – a Nature Photographer’s Year, Saturday 15 December at 19.30 hrs
Speaker: Chris Hatch – Not partying in Ibiza, the other sort of wildlife!

All indoor meetings are held on Saturdays at Goytre Village Hall, Penperlleni (SO 323 046) and start at 7:30pm. An entrance fee of £2.00 includes tea and biscuits. Open to non-members. Goytre Sports & Social Club, Heol Drenewydd, Penperlleni, Pontypool NP4 0AR, UK

Dec
16
Sun
Glamorgan Bird Club : Field Meeting – South Gower & Rhosilli Bay.
Dec 16 @ 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Sunday 16th December – South Gower & Rhosilli Bay (F) 2-3 Divers and scoter will be the main focus in the bay. Chough should be patrolling the headland. High tide:12:16.

Field Meetings – Contact John Wilson (info@glamorganbirds.org.uk) at least seven days before the due date. Bring packed lunch and suitable clothing/footwear. Participants may be expected to car share. The meeting place in Cardiff for many trips is St Margaret’s Road in Whitchurch, Cardiff – see the map opposite. We meet at the A4054 end.

Jan
13
Sun
Glamorgan Bird Club : Field Meeting – Whitford Point & Llanridian.
Jan 13 @ 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Sunday 13th January – Whiteford Point & Llanrhidian. One of the best bird walks in Glamorgan. The marshes can hold large numbers of waders. Ducks, including Eider, should be seen. There may be divers and grebes off-shore. To round off the day we hope for Great White Egret plus harriers and owls at Llanrhidian. High tide 10:30.

Field Meetings – Contact John Wilson (info@glamorganbirds.org.uk) at least seven days before the due date. Bring packed lunch and suitable clothing/footwear. Participants may be expected to car share. The meeting place in Cardiff for many trips is St Margaret’s Road in Whitchurch, Cardiff – see the map opposite. We meet at the A4054 end.

Jan
16
Wed
Glamorgan Bird Club : Field Meeting – Kenfig & Newton Point.
Jan 16 @ 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Wednesday 16th January – Kenfig & Newton Point (F) 2-3 There should be good numbers of duck on Kenfig Pool. Purple Sandpipers are likely at Newton. High tide 14:14.

Field Meetings – Contact John Wilson (info@glamorganbirds.org.uk) at least seven days before the due date. Bring packed lunch and suitable clothing/footwear. Participants may be expected to car share. The meeting place in Cardiff for many trips is St Margaret’s Road in Whitchurch, Cardiff – see the map opposite. We meet at the A4054 end.