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Subject:

Re: Medium rare breeders

From:

Colin McNamee <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Irish Bird Network <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 28 Jul 1998 17:16:00 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (138 lines)


The last Partridge I had seen before last September was on Wicklow Head
in 1981.
Apart from 2 small concentrations of wild birds in the midlands I don't
know of any reliable sites for Partridge.(except perhaps introduced
birds in N. Wexford.)
Speaking of which has anyone seen any Red-legged Partridges in recent
times ?
Colin
 ----------
From: william McDowell
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Medium rare breeders
Date: Tuesday, July 28, 1998 4:45PM

Myself and AMcG where the last persons to see Partridge in Northern
Ireland
back in 1980 (NIBR 1980/81) though the new Atlas indicated sightings in
N.I.

The No. of pairs of Wood Warblers in N. Ireland is reported each year in
NIBA reports; there are usually 5 - 10 pairs each year.

Regards Willie

Colin McNamee wrote:

> Hi
> An interesting topic, but my reply is more of a question than an answer.
> I don't want to know any sites of scarce breeders as I think the net may
> not be the best place to mention them. But I would be interested to know
> the following.
> Does anyone have up to date figures on the numbers of pairs of any of
> the following.
> Reed Warbler
> Ring Ouzel
> Wood Warbler
> Little Tern
> Redstart
> Partridge
> Quail
>
> I think that Quail is a lot more widespread than it appears at first
> glance. My last sighting of Partridge was c20 last Autumn but apart from
> that I haven't seen any for years.
> Colin
>
> ----------
> From: cóilín maclochlainn
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Medium rare breeders
> Date: Tuesday, July 28, 1998 1:53AM
>
> Hi all,
>
> The BirdNet has been so quiet in the last few days (everyone must be on
> holidays) that I thought it might be a good moment to introduce a new
> topic.
>
> During the summer, I checked out several sites which, for me at least,
> were
> traditional haunts of medium-rare breeding birds. I just wanted to see
> if,
> after 10-20 years, the birds which I had seen (in many cases for the
> first
> time) were still nesting in those same areas. If not, it might indicate
> a
> change in their breeding status, though probably not of statistical
> significance.
>
> I was pleased to find two family parties of Whinchat in the site where I
> had first seen them, so many years ago, near Lough Dan (Wicklow), but
> could
> find no Ring Ouzel at Lough Bray, though I had heard they had not been
> seen
> there for some years. Hen Harriers were still missing from the Upper
> Liffey
> Valley, though I knew they had disappeared from this site many years
> ago.
>
> Peregrines were if anything commoner than ever - it used to be such a
> thrill to see a pair at Luggala, but now it's no problem to find them
> almost everywhere suitable.
>
> Does anyone else have reports of losses/absences in traditional haunts?
>
> The only significant change I noticed was the lack of Spotted
> Flycatchers -
> in fact I have seen none in breeding habitat this summer, and I believe
> there has been a major decline in this species in Ireland. If there has
> been a major decline, it doesn't seem to have been noticed by many. Many
> people have noticed the huge increase in breeding Blackcaps - though I
> wonder how much of that is due to improved observer skills - but funnily
> enough very few people have reported declines as opposed to increases.
>
> I would not be surprised if the new Irish Birds of Conservation Concern
> project finds that Spotted Flycatcher needs to be put on the new Irish
> Red
> List, alongside Yellowhammer, Grey Partridge, Dunlin, Golden Plover,
> Lapwing, Corncrake... and all the others ....
>
> And while I'm at it, why have the people concerned set 100 as the
> threshold
> number of breeding pairs for the Rare Breeder Category in the new Irish
> Red
> List? The figure is 300 in Britain. They must have thought that, Ireland
> being a smaller country, 100 would be appropriate. But shouldn't the
> figure
> be the equivalent of a sustainable, viable population? That does not
> differ
> between Ireland and the UK, does it? Corncrake are down to 100-200
> 'pairs',
> and if that isn't in the rare breeding category, what is.
>
> You could have a localised population of 100 pairs of something, and one
> change in land-use could eliminate the entire lot. Birds are a bit like
> aerial plankton - you cannot simply view them anthropomorphically like
> numbers of pairs of humans - they occur in masses or not at all. Think
> of
> the passenger pigeon. I know not all birds fit this pattern - birds of
> prey
> for example take up very large territories and are typically low in
> density
> - but a great number of species are more like aerial plankton, and
> 'safe'
> numbers must often be many hundreds, not just one hundred. Shouldn't we
> up
> the threshold to at least 300?
>
> Cóilín MacLochlainn
>
> MacLochlainn Editorial Services
> (Writing, Editing, Design & Desktop Publishing)
> 27 Kilcross Court
> Sandyford
> Dublin 18
> Tel: 294 3459
> Fax: 294 3459 (call before faxing)
> Email: [log in to unmask]


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