Sunday 9 December 2012

Cirl Bunting on the Roseland

I spent some time today birding on the Roseland area of Cornwall.  Divers and grebes were my main target.  The sea state was calm and visibility was good.  I expected to see more but had to be content with six Great Northern Diver, six Black-throated Diver, one Slavonian Grebe, one Long-tailed Duck, one unseasonal Whimbrel, up to 200 Dunlin and a Grey Plover.  I also counted at least 16 Mediterranean Gulls, mostly adults.  I was walking the coast path when I stumbled across a flock of 30 Skylark and about ten Cirl Bunting feeding in some stubble.  I managed to get a couple distant shots. 
Cirl Buntings have been the subject of a RSPB and Natural England re-introduction project, which has been running since 2007.  Summer 2011 was a particularly strong year when above average young were reared. This enigmatic farmland bird used to range across Cornwall, but disappeared in the early nineties. Thanks to the ongoing reintroduction project, it has been returned to one of its past haunts and the population is growing. More information can be found HERE  Stuart Croft's informative update can be found on the Roseland-Online website HERE .

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