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Monitoring Tawny Owls

Over the last year or so, BTO has been running the BTO Owl Appeal with the aim of funding Project Owl – a set of interrelated research on the UK’sd. The appeal looks to fund a programme of work over the next few years, and provide long-term support to bird ringers and nest recorders.

Tawny Owl

Tawny Owl by Paul Buxton, Flickr

The first body of work from Project Owl is to conduct a national survey of tawny owls. Better information on how Tawny Owl populations are doing is obtained by carrying out periodic targeted surveys, with BTO previously carrying out national structured surveys for tawny owls in Britain in the autumns of 1989 and 2005.

By now carrying out comparable surveys that also take advantage of modern statistical techniques, BTO aims to get up-to-date measures of change in their occupancy and populations as well as habitat associations and geographical patterns.

By extending the survey to multiple seasons, BTO plans to also look at changes in their population over the course of the year and compare it to productivity/survival recorded in other BTO monitor projects like the Nest Record Scheme and Ringing Scheme. Through this, BTO hopes to learn more about our noisy but often mysterious neighbours.

Two separate surveys will be conducted to monitor our tawny owls.  The Tawny Owl Calling Survey takes place between September 2018 and March 2019, and the Tawny Owl Point Survey beginning shortly with the first survey period will run from 15 August to 15 October, 2018.

During this time, volunteers are asked to make one to three (ideally at least two) short evening visits to a chosen tetrad within as short a period as possible. The whole process is planned to be repeated between mid-February and mid-March 2019, and in autumn 2019/spring 2020.

We have 33 tetrad available to monitor in east Glamorgan.

More details, with options to take part in the Tawny Owl Point Survey (TOPS) are available online.

 

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July 18, 2018 at 12:59 pm Leave a comment

Willing for Willow Tits

In 2018 Glamorgan Bird Club, with a grant from Welsh Ornithological Society, is running a project to help determine the breeding status and distribution of willow tit in east Glamorgan. Knowledge suggests the species is uncommon and patchily distributed in our area and its recent national population decline makes it a Red List species.

Findings of this study will inform potential habitat management work and nest box provision.

wt7

Willow Tit by Richard Towell (Flickr)

Anyone can make a contribution to the project by reporting sightings of this species in our regions.  Club members participating in the survey, can claim travel expenses, recording the date and distance travelled for each survey visit.

More details, including instructions, identification guides and survey forms are available from the Glamorgan Willow Tit Project.

April 15, 2018 at 2:20 pm Leave a comment

Local Open Day

On 26 March, we were pleased to hold our first local BTO Open Day at Parc Slip NR.  Over twenty members and volunteers joined us to meet friends, old and new, and share our interest in bird studies.

We were pleased to hear Dr Rob Parry of the Wildlife Trust of South & West Wales describe conservation activity around the reserve as it tries to protect and create suitable breeding for little ringed plover and lapwing on this former coalfield site.

Next, Kelvin Jones, BTO Cymru’s Development Officer, gave a news update from BTO and explained how volunteers can get involved with a range of volunteer surveys.

Dan and Wayne then shared information about the House Martin Survey and Nest Record Scheme, before we all enjoyed lunch at the reserve’s excellent coffee shop.  The indoor session concluded with local updates on BBS and WeBS.

bbs

Most volunteers then opted to join one of the field exercises where we ran through the methodology involved in conducting a BBS survey or learned the art of nest finding.  Though bird numbers were low, we were able to use the call method to detect a few species and map and habitat code our transect routes.  A partially built long-tailed tit nest, and sitting song thrush were reward for the nest finders.

Thanks to all participants who made the day a success, and to those volunteering for their first BTO survey.

Good luck,  and we look forward to our next event.

March 29, 2017 at 3:28 pm 1 comment

Big Birding Day, 2017

Our friends at Glamorgan Bird Club are holding the sixth annual Big Birding Day in a few weeks time.

Big Birding Day
10:00am onwards
Sunday, 30 April 2017

Kenfig National Nature Reserve
Ton Kenfig
Bridgend
CF33 4PT

Capture

A wide range of activities will be on offer, including:

  • guided bird walks
  • bird ringing demonstration
  • children’s activities
  • plant stall
  • cake stall
  • refreshments and more ….

There is no charge, and all are welcome to come along and enjoy a day of birds at this fantastic reserve.

March 28, 2017 at 1:28 pm 1 comment

Your Holiday Records Needed

aea06d04-951c-4b77-9548-3ec7ab62723fFieldwork for the European Breeding Bird Atlas 2 concludes this summer.  EBBA2 will map the distribution and abundance of Europe’s 500+ breeding species across more than 50 countries. Huge progress has been made already, but your records are still needed to fill gaps in coverage.

Some of the countries where gaps exist, including Portugal, Greece and Turkey, are regular destinations for UK birders. Others, such as Albania, Armenia and European Russia, are further off the beaten track.

BirdTrack users can help by submitting records – with breeding evidence codes – from wherever they travel in Europe, using the global data entry tool or the new app.

Information on how, and where, birders can help is given on the EBBA2 website.

March 9, 2017 at 12:23 pm Leave a comment

Come and Meet Us

We are pleased to be hosting our first BTO Glamorgan Open Day.  An opportunity for members, volunteers and all with an interest in bird studies to meet like-minded people, and get a taste of one or more of the BTO’s volunteer surveys.

10:00am – 2:00pm
Sunday, 26 March 2017

Parc Slip Nature Reserve
Fountain Road
Aberkenfig
Bridgend CF32 0EH

Birdwatchers
Birdwatchers by Ken Mattison on Flickr

 

Kelvin Jones, BTO Cymru’s Development Officer, will be attending, and we plan to have both indoor and outdoor activities, including a quiz, some short presentations and practical survey exercises around the reserve.

Dr Rob Parry of the Wildlife Trust of South & West Wales will also bring us up to date with bird conservation activity around the the reserve, including the latest on the Lapwing Project.

The event is free of charge, but spaces are limited so please book early to secure a place.

Programme

Indoor activities

10:00am
Welcome
Wayne Morris

10:10am
Bird conservation developments at Parc Slip NR
Dr Rob Parry, Conservation Manager, WTSWW

10:30am
BTO news
Kelvin Jones, Development Officer, BTO Wales

10:50am
Getting involved in BTO surveys
Kelvin Jones, Development Officer, BTO Wales

11:20am
House Martin Survey
Daniel Jenkins-Jones

11:30am
Nest Records Scheme
Wayne Morris, BTO Regional Representative in East Glamorgan
Daniel Jenkins-Jones

12:00pm
Lunch
Bring your own, or use Parc Slip NR coffee shop

12:45pm
Breeding Bird Survey (BBS)
Wayne Morris

13:30pm
Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS)
Daniel Jenkins-Jones

13:55pm
How you can support BTO
Kelvin Jones

Outdoor activities

Bring binoculars, notepad and boots.  Sample survey forms will be provided.

14:00pm
Survey taster sessions

  • BirdTrack
  • BBS
  • WeBS
  • NRS
  • etc

Kelvin Jones, Wayne Morris, Daniel Jenkins-Jones

January 19, 2017 at 11:24 am Leave a comment

Eastern Glamorgan Bird Report, 2015 Published

The latest annual bird report from the Glamorgan Bird Club has just been published.  It is the 54th report for our region, and the 7th under the guidance of the Glamorgan Rarities Committee.

dsc_0005The Eastern Glamorgan Bird Report No 54 (2015) is presented in B5 format and contains 89 pages reviewing the birding year in our region. Species account form the basis of the report, commentating on the fortunes of resident, migrant and rare birds observed during the year.

Bird of the year for many was a county first – a Great Spotted Cuckoo found in the northern reaches of the region and viewed by many during its two day stay.  Another county first was a confiding Little Bunting in Cardiff, viewed and photographed by many.  A Lesser Scaup continues to over-winter in the Cardiff area and its North Amercan cousin, Ring-necked Duck visited Cosmeston Lakes CP during October.  The region’s second Black Stork was seen over Maesteg and Great White Egret sightings continue to grow.  Other notable species included Glossy Ibis, Roseatte Tern, Wood Lark and a small influx of Yellow-browed Warbler.

Also included are a county ringing report along with accounts from our ringing groups highlight species and numbers caught and recovered.  Other features are  a report on the year’s weather, migrant dates, the county list, a BTO surveys report.  Line drawings and photographs continue to highlight the talents of our region’s local birders.

The Eastern Glamorgan Bird Report is free to all members of the Glamorgan Bird Club.

Copies may be purchased from John Wilson:

John Wilson
Editor of the Eastern Glamorgan Bird Report
122 Westbourne Road
Penarth
Vale of Glamorgan
CF64 3HH

tel: 02920 339424

November 20, 2016 at 10:54 am Leave a comment

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