Best ever DAY ONE count

With the better weather forecast for Norfolk that was our destination for the day one count. Starting with Barn Owl and ending wit a lovely Grey Male Hen Harrier we had a cracking day. Shore Lark at Holkham, Twite at Thornham, Snow Buntings at Salthouse and Cattle Egret at Stiffkey were the four main targets […]

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POLL: Should driven grouse shooting be banned?

After 150 years of being treated as a quaint rural pastime, grouse shooting is now under the microscope – unless it reforms it is doomed, and it may drag other country sports down with it. On Saturday, the start of the grouse shooting season, the social media hashtag #inglorious12th was trending, and a social media […]

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POLL: Should there be a tough crack down on the killing of raptors?

Grouse moors are to blame for persecuting endangered birds of prey in the Scottish Highlands and Uplands, according to a wildlife crime expert. Ian Thomson, the head of investigations at the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds Scotland, said data from 77 birds of prey that had been satellite-tagged showed a direct correlation between […]

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POLL: Should wildlife crime be enforced by tougher legislation?

Almost 200 reports of shooting, trapping and destruction of birds of prey were received by the RSPB in 2015, the charity said. Some 64 out of the 196 reports were confirmed, including the shooting or attempted shooting of 46 birds of prey, including 16 buzzards, 11 peregrines, three red kites, one red-footed falcon and one […]

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Great visit to Wallasea Island

Sometimes a days birding can deliver very little and then sometimes days like today come along where it all seems to go right. A Barn Owl as we pulled into the track to the reserve followed by two Short-eared Owls hunting at first light then a male Merlin flashes across us and sits out on […]

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The severe Baltic winter that made thousands of birds flee

We seem, nowadays, to have forgotten what a “proper” winter is like. A series of mild seasons, punctuated only by the freeze-ups of 2009-10 and 2010-11, have perhaps made us complacent. But for Europe’s birds, cold winters need to be taken far more seriously. Almost 30 years ago the winter of 1978-79 led to a […]

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More Harrier action at Wallasea

Another trip to Wallasea Island at first light this morning. A Male Merlin zipped along the reeds and a female was seen sitting on a fence post too before two Ring-tail Hen Harriers and a Marsh Harrier came out to play. Several Kestrel and a few more flying passes from the Merlins kept me entertained […]

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Harriers and Shorties!

My day started in gloomy weather at Wallasea this morning where four Marsh Harriers and a single Ring-tail Hen Harrier entertained me. With the Shorties staying down I headed off in search of a bit more light and found some in Cambridgeshire and the Short-eared Owls came out to play at this venue too. A […]

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Hen Harrier is Actually Two Different Species

New research confirms that the hen harrier (Circus cyaneus), a medium-sized bird of prey found in parts of North America and Eurasia, is two different species of bird that are only distantly related. The study, led by Dr. Graham Etherington of the University of California’s Museum of Vertebrate Zoology and the Earlham Institute, explores the […]

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Another Hen Harrier shot dead sparking fears for rare bird of prey

Detectives at Cumbria Police have opened a full criminal investigation into the fatal shooting of one of the bird of prey, called Rowan. Last year there were just six successful hen harrier nests resulting from 12 attempts in England. But this year the RSPB says there are only three nests known to be currently in […]

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