This is just a reminder that in 2016 the Club are carrying out a survey of Curlews. They occur fairly widely across the club area with an obvious stronghold in the Lower Derwent Valley. However there was a 46% decline in the UK’s Curlews between 1995 and 2013 so this is a species in trouble. The survey will run during April, May and June, so it is now underway!
Any records of Curlews will be welcome and we would encourage people to publish them on the YorkBirding email group – it will give everyone an update on where Curlews are being seen and remind us to submit our own sightings. The basic information is where, when and how many birds were seen and also whether there was any behaviour indicative of breeding (e.g. song, display flight, distraction display etc).
I’m sure quite a few of us have local spots where we know there are Curlews, but hopefully this will also motivate us to look at other areas which don’t normally get visited, but might have Curlews. I know there are several places like that in my local area and I hope to have a look at them over the coming weeks.
We also hope that some members will provide more detailed sightings. The intention is to adopt the methodology used in the BTO Breeding Bird Survey. This will involve two visits to a 1 km square of your choice. Each visit will take about 30 minutes, walking the same two 1 km transects each time. The obvious value of this is consistency of recording and compatibility with the Breeding Bird Survey data. If you would like to take on a specific square then please email me and I will liaise with Rob Chapman (our BTO representative) to ensure there is no duplication.