The new Bird Atlas - Part 5, the bad news

Shane Wolsey has been providing us with an overview of the new Bird Atlas and in particular species that have had range expansions or beneficial changes in NI. However Bird Atlas 2007-11 stories are not all good – far from it.  We have had one breeding species extinction from Ireland since the last Atlas – Corn Bunting.  Not a surprise to anyone.

There have, however, been a raft of distribution and abundance contractions to balance the increases reported previously.  These contractions are most apparent in Ireland’s waders.  The contraction of the breeding ranges of Redshank, Curlew, Lapwing, Woodcock and Snipe is one of the important conservation messages coming out of the Atlas, and corroborates the decline in numbers recorded through other long-term monitoring schemes, in particular the Breeding Bird Survey in the UK and the Countryside Bird Survey in the Republic of Ireland. The breeding distribution change maps for all these species paint a dire picture, here are Lapwing and Curlew as examples.



If you would like to buy Bird Atlas 2007-11 then follow this link:

Shane Wolsey (with thanks to Dawn Balmer and Simon Gillings)
BTO NI Office

Distribution maps from Bird Atlas 2007-11 which is a joint project between BTO, BirdWatch Ireland and the Scottish Ornithologists' Club. Maps reproduced with permission from the BTO.

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