Thursday, 20 August 2015

Late Start Early Finish.

It was a late start yesterday, and by 1.30pm the rain - which lasted until early evening - brought about an early finish by the time I got to Glasson Dock where I found 12 Little Egret assembled on the marsh for the high tide roost about an hour away.

At Conder Green, in the creeks I found only one Common Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank, c.150 Redshank, a single Dunlin and Snipe, and saw House Martins around the Cafe d' Lune area still. On Conder Pool, 2 Wheatear were something of a surprise, with 24 Goldfinch on the thistles, 4 Little Grebe, and a Collared Dove on here was unusual.

A big disappointment as I was looking forward to another good wander again but finished up with a pitiful short list. Some you win, some you loose, talking of which....

The Yellow-breasted Bunting.

Yellow-breasted Bunting Arkive 

The Yellow-breasted Bunting is an extremely rare vagrant to the UK, the first record being of a female found in Norfolk in September 1905, the latest one being of a juvenile at Brownsman, Farne Islands, Northumberland, in September 2013. 

As one of Eurasia's formerly most abundant species, the Yellow-breasted Bunting (YBB) has declined by a staggering 90% and retracted its range by 5,000km since 1980.

High levels of hunting appear to be responsible for this decline of the YBB, and at night time roosts where the birds gather in huge flocks on migration and on wintering grounds, they become easy targets for trapping in huge numbers. The species is known in Chinese as 'the rice bird' and following initial declines, hunting of them was banned in China in 1997, but millions of these and other song birds were still being killed for food and sold on the black market as late as 2013. 

Back in 2001 an estimated one million YBB were being consumed for food in one Chinese Province alone, and the species has now all but disappeared from Eastern Europe, European Russia, large parts of Western and Central Siberia, and Japan. 

Hard to believe that, in the 21st century, man needs to be better educated on the consequences of eating wildlife. 

Homo sapiens....The greatest and most ruthless of all know predator species.


Warren Baker said...

'' The Greatest and most ruthless predator'' also the most ignorant, selfish and stupid!!

David Gascoigne said...

I fear that wildlife is in for more of this. Many other species are becoming decimated. Numerous countries have excellent laws to protect wildlife but they are rarely, if ever, enforced. I saw mist nets in Cambodia being used to catch birds for the pot - western technology to aid in the scientific study of birds being used to destroy them.