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Common Birds Census
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Nest Record Scheme
Waterways Bird Survey
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OYSTERCATCHER Haematopus ostralegus
 
Conservation Listings Long term trend

Table 4/Amber (Wintering population)
Biodiversity Steering Group: Unlisted

UK Waterways: Stable after rapid increase
Scotland: Recent decline

 
Status Summary
Oystercatchers increased along inland waterways between 1974 and 1986, as the species colonised inland areas in England and Wales (Gibbons et al. 1993). Thereafter, the WBS index stabilised, so showing a pattern parallel to that in winter abundance revealed by WeBS (Pollitt et al. 2000). The increase in nest failure rates for the 27-day egg stage (25 days for incubation + 2 days for laying) is from 30% to 43% and probably results from the spread of the species into less favourable areas. The trend towards earlier laying can be partially explained by recent climate change (Crick & Sparks 1999). The recent declines shown by the BBS, especially in Scotland, may reveal a new problem for conservation and the situation should be monitored.
 
 
Table of population changes for Oystercatcher
Source Period
(yrs)
Years Plots
(n)
Change
(%)
Lower
limit
Upper
limit
Alert Comment
WBS waterways 23 1975-1998 23 109 74 164    
  10 1988-1998 28 -3 -21 32    
  5 1993-1998 32 8 1 16    
BBS UK 5 1994-1999 227 -18 -26 -9    
BBS England 5 1994-1999 99 4 -15 27    
BBS Scotland 5 1994-1999 118 -22 -33 -9    
The Breeding Bird Survey is jointly funded by BTO, JNCC and RSPB
 
 
Table of productivity information for Oystercatcher
Variable Period
(yrs)
Years Mean
annual
sample
Trend Predicted
in first year
Predicted
in last year
Change Comment
Clutch size 30 1968-1998 106 None        
Daily failure rate (eggs) 30 1968-1998 112 Linear increase 0.0129 nests/day 0.0205 nests/day 0.0076 nests/day  
Laying date 30 1968-1998 47 Linear decline day 137 day 130 -7 days  
 
Insufficient data on brood size
available for this species
Insufficient data on nestling failure
available for this species
Insufficient data on CES
available for this species

 

   



The report should be cited as: Baillie, S.R., Crick, H.Q.P., Balmer, D.E., Bashford, R.I., Beaven, L.P., Freeman, S.N., Marchant, J.H., Noble, D.G., Raven, M.J., Siriwardena, G.M., Thewlis, R. and Wernham, C.V. (2001) Breeding Birds in the Wider Countryside: their conservation status 2000. BTO Research Report No. 252. BTO, Thetford. (http://www.bto.org/birdtrends)

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Last updated: 17 April, 2001

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