2019 Conference - booking now open for all

The 2019 Conference will celebrate the 30th Anniversary of WOS and will be held at the Penglais Campus at Aberystwyth University on Saturday 16 November 2019. Booking is now open for all: for WOS members – tickets are priced at £30 + small booking fee (the same as in 2018) and for non-members tickets are priced at £35 + small booking fee (again, the same as in 2018). We are also offering 10 discounted places at £10 + small booking fee for under 26 year olds – there are currently six of these left and proof of age will be required on the day. Full details of the programme, with details of booking, directions and how to get a parking permit can be found on our Conference page.

The new 'BIRDS OF WALES' - support the project through species sponsorship

To mark WOS’ 30th anniversary, work is now well under way on a new volume, describing the history and current status of every bird ever recorded in Wales, common and rare, with an assessment of the conservation issues facing our breeding, wintering and migrant birds. WOS is inviting individuals and organisations to sponsor each species on the Welsh list and we’re very pleased to report that by 15th September 70 species have sole or shared sponsorship. That still leaves over 400 available! Sole sponsorship is available at £200 per species and shared sponsorship is now available at £50 per species – and you don’t have to find a partner sponsor. Find out more about the project, how it’s progressing and how you can support it through sole or shared species sponsorship here.

Students - deadline for applications for the Derek Moore Student Research Award is 30 September

This award recognises and promotes the contribution made to Welsh ornithology by undergraduate and masters level students researching birds in Wales. It is given in memory of Derek Moore, a conservation champion and former chairman of WOS. Any full- or part-time undergraduate or masters student who writes a dissertation based on a study of birds in Wales is qualified to enter. The entrant must have completed the field work for their dissertation in Wales and must be available to accept the award in person and present a poster on their dissertation at the WOS annual conference. Dissertations completed in the current or previous calendar year can be submitted. Find out more details and download an application form here.

WOS Lifetime Achievement Award - nominations close on 30 September

In 2018 we recognised Bob Howells’ enduring contribution to birding in Wales. Whose contribution would you like to celebrate in 2019? Nominations are open, but will close on 30th September – for details of how to nominate a deserving recipient follow the link here.

The good news from France (Curlews) and the very bad news about autumn trapping

Together with other Curlew conservation organisations we are delighted with the decision of the French Council to fix the Curlew hunting quota at zero for 2019/20. In striking contrast the French government has approved the legal trapping and hunting of more than 150,000 wild birds in France this season – a total higher than last year’s permitted catches. The figures, published on 5 September, legalise the use of various trapping methods, some of which are widely considered inhumane and invariably inflict pain and suffering on the trapped birds. The approved licences include the use of gluesticks (or limesticks) to ensnare 42,500 thrushes in five departments of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region and the employment of pantes (large horizontal nets) or matoles (small hanging cages) to catch an extraordinary 106,500 Eurasian Skylarks in the Landes, Gironde, Lot et Garonne and Pyrénées-Atlantiques departments. Aditionally, 5,800 thrushes, 1,200 Northern Lapwings and 30 European Golden Plovers may be capture by nets or snares in the Ardennes region and the shooting of 18,000 (EIGHTEEN THOUSAND) Turtle Doves. Remarkably, these developments come just weeks after the European Commission warned France for failing to meet its obligations to protect endangered species on 25 July, targeting in particular the country’s undifferentiated trapping under the pretext of tradition.

Scarce sightings during August 2019

The star bird was undoubtedly a Fea’s Petrel seen off Bardsey on 20th August, when a group of young birders were visiting the island. Unsurprisingly, seabirds featured strongly in the month and you can browse Robin Sandham’s monthly round-up here.

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Events for birdwatchers in Wales

Glamorgan Bird Club : Indoor Meeting – AGM & Quiz
Sep 17 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Tuesday 17th September – AGM and quiz (I) – Our annual reviews with refreshments and quiz afterwards. (re-arranged from April as a result of the Club status change). Meeting to be held at Kenfig Reserve Centre unless otherwise advised. Starting at 7:45.

Glamorgan Bird Club : Field Meeting – Monthly Walks at Kenfig.
Sep 21 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

Monthly Walks (Kenfig NNR) – 2-3 – These take place on the third Saturday of each month. Note the non-running of the one due on Sat 21st April 2018 – see list below. Meet at the Reserve Centre at 9.00a.m. and run to 12:00 at the latest. Contact Strinda Davies for details or alternatively Dave Carrington (07790939743).

Wrexham Birdwatchers Society : Outdoor Meeting – Llanfairfechan & Spinnies.
Sep 21 @ 9:30 am – 4:30 pm

Leader – Marian Williams.
Further Information – kevjsmith3@hotmail.com

Cambrian Ornithological Society : Outdoor Meeting – Porthmadog area.
Sep 21 @ 10:00 am – 4:30 pm

Saturday 21st September: Field Trip to Porthmadog area

We’ll look for waders and grebes as we stroll along the coast, then maybe move further toards Criccieth. Leaders Andy Clarke & Geoff Gibbs. Meet 10.00am, at Borth-y-Gest, Morfa Bychan Car Park; SH 565376.