Breeding ground correlates of the distribution and decline of the Common Cuckoo Cuculus canorus at two spatial scales
Cuckoos: England’s loss is Scotland’s gain
The Cuckoo is quickly declining from the English countryside, but this new study using BTO data shows that despite its decline in the south of the UK, it is increasing in the Scottish Highlands, the population is increasing.
Overcoming the challenges of public data archiving for citizen science biodiversity recording and monitoring schemes
Opening up biodiversity data - challenges and opportunities
Public data archiving (PDA), where data are made freely available on demand through recognised data repositories, is increasingly being required by funders and journals to promote ‘open data’. However, this rapidly developing area brings with it some potential risks, particularly to the maintenance and operation of long-term citizen science monitoring schemes. What are the solutions?
Species contributions to single biodiversity values under-estimate whole community contribution to a wider range of values to society.
Valuing biodiversity - the importance of looking at multiple species and values
<p>The valuing of biodiversity for human benefit has become an important principle for those involved in making decisions about the management of natural resources. There is, however, a need to understand just what ‘valuing’ biodiversity really means, and to determine which species within a community contribute to which values and to what degree. Few studies have attempted to score species objectively across the different ways of valuing nature and biodiversity, so this paper provides some valuable insight.</p>
We present the results of a process to attempt to identify 100 questions that, if answered, would make a substantial difference to terrestrial and marine landscape restoration in Europe.
Estimating mortality rates among passerines caught for ringing with mist nets using data from previously ringed birds.
Estimating mortality of birds caught for ringing with mist nets
The benefit of the information accrued when capturing wild animals for study needs to outweigh the potential risk to individuals that are caught. New BTO research, just published, assesses the potential effects of capturing wild birds.
Does garden feeding shape populations?
Feeding wild birds is a popular pastime and many of us provide seed and other foods to help our feathered friends. But what impact does all this food have?
Caterpillars and caterpillar-eating birds: out of synch in space and time?
The increasing temperatures associated with a changing climate may disrupt ecological systems, including by affecting the timing of key events. If events within different trophic levels are affected in different ways then this can lead to what is known as trophic mismatch. But what is the evidence for trophic mismatch, and are there spatial or temporal patterns within the UK that might point to mismatch as a driver of regional declines in key insect-eating birds?
Spring migration strategies of Whinchat Saxicola rubetra when successfully crossing potential barriers of the Sahara and the Mediterranean Sea.
Crossing barriers: does flexibility provide resilience in a changing world?
Migratory barriers, such as the Sahara Desert, are thought to present a challenge to small migrant birds like Whinchat, but how much do we really know about the strategies these birds use when crossing barriers and can these strategies provide resilience to future changes in barrier width that might arise from changes in climate and land-use?
What makes a good host for a parasitic Cuckoo?
The Cuckoo is a generalist avian brood parasite, known to have utilized at least 125 different bird species as a host within Europe. Despite this, individual female Cuckoos are thought to be host-specific, preferentially laying their eggs in one – or a few – host nests. This raises the question of what makes a good host.
A review of raptor and owl monitoring activity across Europe: its implications for capacity building towards pan-European monitoring
Shaping positive engagements with urban birds
There is growing evidence that interactions with birds in our towns and cities can provide people with feelings of being connected with nature; such interactions can also have positive effects of human well-being. Within the field of ecosystem services such forms of benefit are known as ‘cultural services’. However, not all interactions between people and birds are necessarily positive. Birds are sometimes responsible for disease transmission, for the contamination of water sources, for aggression, damage to property and for causing unwelcome noise and smells. These interactions are known as ‘disservices’.
Written by Dave Cromack and drawing on the BTO's expertise, this new book provides the perfect guide to building, erecting and monitoring nestboxes for a broad range of bird species.
The health hazards to wild birds associated with garden feeding.
The provision of supplementary food for wild birds at garden feeding stations is a widespread practice in the UK. These additional resources have been shown, through research, to be of benefit to wild birds, but there is still a great deal that we do not know about the wider implications of such provisioning. Wherever individual birds congregate, the risk of disease transmission is increased, and the high densities of birds often seen at garden feeding stations might contribute to the emergence and spread of infectious diseases.
Can climate matching predict the current and future climatic suitability of the UK for the establishment of non-native birds?
Does climate change bring us invasive species?
Non-native species are becoming a more common sight, but is this linked to the changing climate? A new BTO study investigates whether it's possible to predict which non-native species are likely to establish in the UK.
The breeding population of Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus in the United Kingdom, Isle of Man and Channel Islands in 2014
Breeding Peregrines on the up thanks to growth of lowland populations
The return of breeding Peregrines to former haunts, and the colonisation of urban sites such as industrial buildings and cathedrals, has not gone unnoticed by birdwatchers. It is only now, however, with the publication of the results from the latest national Peregrine survey, that we can put figures on the changing fortunes of this stunning bird of prey.
Winter bird ID and WeBS (Residential, Flatford Mill, Suffolk)
Improve your winter bird ID skills and learn all about the Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS) on this weekend residential course for relative beginners and improvers. With a focus on waterfowl and waders, discover more about...
Unlocking the science to reveal the state of nature
David Noble takes a sober look at the latest State of Nature Report.