Laniidae - Shrikes
The alternative name of 'butcher-birds' is an appropriate one for this small family of birds. The shrikes are a group of robust, starling-sized birds, with stout, hooked bills, and strong feet. They are all predatory, taking a range of large insects and small birds, mammals and lizards. Several species will impale their prey on on large thorns either to hold the prey while they dismember it, or to store it for later consumption.
The Red-backed Shrike was once a common bird across southern Britain, but has disappeared with the intensification of agricultural practices, though it is still seen on passage. The Great Grey Shrike, a winter visitor, is now perhaps the most likely to be encountered.
Regularly Occurring Species
Great Grey Shrike
Lesser Grey Shrike
Songbird ID (3 sessions, Wednesdays 10am)
This course involves three weekly online sessions of 100 minutes, with a trainer:participant ratio of about 1:30. Participants' microphones are muted during the sessions but there is a large interactive component,...
Scotland’s winter visitors: why and how do they migrate?
From geese and swans to thrushes and warblers, discover the secrets of our winter birds' migration.
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