BIRDING THE LUNE ESTUARY, THE UPLANDS OF BOWLAND AND BEYOND

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ISLAND MERE LEIGHTON MOSS RSPB. PETE WOODRUFF.

Friday, 3 March 2017

The Shorelark.

The two Shorelark which AC found on the marsh off Bank End last Friday, are still present there a week later.

Shorelark Jan Larsson

The race flava which breeds in Fennoscandia and western Russia, is the Shorelark that visits Britain, where it mainly inhabits the shoreline and saltmarshes. A pair nested successfully in Scotland in 1997, but had possibly done so during 1972-76.

Wintering on the east coast ranging from Grampian to Kent, though previous records, and the current Bank End birds, some occur on the west coast. Numbers vary, but one winter survey estimated a maximum of 300 birds in Britain during 1981/84. In Norfolk, the winter total fell as low as one or two birds in 1988/89, but a survey in December 1998 found an amazing 591 Shorelark.

Ringing info on the Shorelark is scant, but evidence of site fidelity was found by a male ringed at Gibraltar Point in December 1996, was seen again there in 1998, and a female ringed in Suffolk in March 1997, was seen in the same county the following March and November, thus present in three successive winters. 

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