The Bird Thread

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  • Swifts everywhere all of a sudden. Just seen a flock of several dozen over the town centre.
    I had amazing views of a pair of cuckoos yesterday. One sat still in a branch for a while. 2 Reed Buntings came to investigate and it never flinched as they perched first on its back then on its head!

  • collective noun is ‘a charm’ for obvious reasons
    (the goldfinches not johansenenenen’s)

  • I want to read about turtle dove auctions but all three articles are behind a paywall:

    FT - https://www.ft.com/content/6bfbd5e2-10f9­-4400-b4e1-258225e3ac0f
    Economist - https://www.economist.com/britain/2021/0­7/22/how-an-auction-is-helping-britains-­turtle-doves
    Telegraph - https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/01­/06/post-brexit-farm-subsidy-plans-will-­see-landowners-paid-protect/

    Does anyone with access want to share the content of those articles?

  • Would be interested too. Have not seen a turtle dove for awhile. Collared dove on the other hand, are everywhere.

  • You can usually manage the Telegraph if you stop the page loading before the popup.

    "The first pilot scheme for the post-Brexit farm subsidy plans will involve paying farmers to take care of turtle doves.

    The government is looking to trial 'reverse auction' schemes, where farms bid to receive funding, showing how they would protect a particular species on their land.

    A new scheme for farmers in East Anglia means the winning bidders will have access to £320,000 to save the bird, which has faced a 98 per cent decline since the 1970s.

    The last population estimate in 2016 suggested there were just 3,600 breeding pairs in the UK, with East Anglia being one of the species’ few remaining strongholds.

    Now we have left the EU, the original subsidy scheme, which paid farms a flat sum based on how much land they had, will be gradually replaced with a fund rewarding farmers for protecting or restoring the environment.

    The RSPB is trialing the pilot scheme with Norfolk and Suffolk farmers, to see if reverse auctioning is a useful way to give out the environment-based funding. The results will be submitted to the government.

    Farmers will be asked to create feeding plots for the birds, planting the seeds of the vegetation the doves like to eat, and creating habitat for them to nest in.

    The birds rely on the seeds of fumitory, knotgrass, chickweed, oilseed rape and cereal grains, and thrive on untrimmed grassland. Their habitat has dramatically contracted a this grassland was used for housing and agriculture, leading to their decline.

    They also nest in hedges, so farmers will be encouraged to blant thorny species such as hawthorn and nests are often associated with climbers such as traveller’s joy (wild clematis), honeysuckle or bramble.

    Jake Zarins, the RSPB’s senior project manager, said the project was a "great opportunity" for farmers looking to save "an important part of the UK's agricultural heritage".

    “We are keen to engage as many people as possible in raising awareness of the plight of the turtle dove and working in partnership with those who know best how to deliver the practical assistance these amazing birds need," he added.

    A Defra spokesperson said: “Turtle doves are a priority species for conservation in the UK and this trial will provide a valuable insight into the most effective ways to recover the birds – whose long term decline remains a cause for concern.

    “We are committed to improving the status of declining species and the Environmental Land Management scheme will encourage the recovery of wildlife across the country.”

    The first auctions will take place from 15 February to 2 March 2021."

  • Super thank you. Your trick works and allows me to confirm that the typos are indeed part of the the original article!

  • Heard rumours of a hoopoe in the next village along the valley so wandered over at lunchtime. No upupa epops, alas, but other things. House martin was particularly good to see.


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  • in the future, you can use archive.ph to read articles behind a paywall by pasting the link in to it

  • Tree Sparrow's, rarely see them locally

  • If you google: content/6bfbd5e2-10f9-4400-b4e1-258225e3­ac0f
    I got access to the article without paywall.

  • @greentricky @DethBeard - cheers - both good tips. thank you.

  • Up in the Peaks today, pretty good birding, Meadow Pipits, Tree Pipit, Willow Warblers, Chiffchaffs, Pied Flycatcher, Stonechat, Red Start, Ring Ouzel, Curlew, Dunlin, Lapwing, Buzzard, Kestrel and Merlin

  • Much cuteness, no hissing.


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  • Baby goldfinch


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  • Finally saw a kingfisher at Rye Meads RSPB on my third visit.

    Staff said the chicks are fledging and due to take flight in the next week or so, I think, so the parents are very active.

  • Excellent. There are more nesting at the first hide after the visitor centre

  • More heard than seen today but Cuckoo, Garden Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler, Blackcap, White throat and Chiffchaff all giving it some

  • Nesting box has guests


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  • Swifts over Sheffield this afternoon, first screeches of the summer

  • the shrill call of young fledgling blue tits/ great tits in my garden at the minute and great displays of flying skills every 30 - 60 seconds as the parents fly in to the feeders. they come in over the shed and right along the line of the garden so great view of them and their acrobatics from the back door.

  • Distant Marsh Harrier

  • Few random ones from the last week

  • guests

    Cool, we have blue tits in ours and sounds like a healthy brood of hungry chicks. We've spooked them a few times when eating outside as the box is quite close to the table and if you look at them they know a predator is watching so will fly off for a bit until you're not watching. Looking forward to fledglings in the garden / not looking forward to trying to get the kids to leave them alone.

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The Bird Thread

Posted by Avatar for salad-cunt @salad-cunt

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