Wednesday, March 11, 2009

British Birdlists


Today I finished off two neat little bird lists. If you click on either the images below, you can grab yourself a copy.

The first is a straightforward list of all the native birds of Great Britain. If you print it and fold into quarters, you can slip it in your bird guide on a day out and make a note of what you've seen as you go.
I've included all species for which, on average, more than 5 pairs breed or more than 50 non-breeding individuals visit each year. There are 247. I've wanted a list like this for ages, to encourage me to record what I see while I'm out. I'm sure there are similar lists out there, but I couldn't find one exactly how I wanted it... so I've done it myself.

The second list consists of the same 247 species of birds, but with a note of how many of each species there are, because sometimes that's a very useful thing to know...
The note alongside each bird on the list indicates: the number of breeding pairs; whether they're predominantly resident (r) or migratory (m) breeders; how many individuals are present in winter (w) (or a note such as "w+" if winter numbers are 2-5 times higher than summer; a double ++ implies 5 to 20 times); and a note of how many passage migrants (p) there are, where these are significantly higher than both summer and winter populations. Where no note for winter is given, the number of wintering resident adults is similar to the population in summer – roughly 3x the number of resident breeding pairs – and the number of wintering migrants is zero or extremely low.

Most of the information is simplified from the 2006 report by the Avian Population Estimates Panel (APEP).

(Abbreviated notes are included right-hand side of the sheet.)

Adding up the numbers, it seems that there are around 66 million breeding pairs of birds in Great Britain – still a little more than one pair for every human being.

Long may it stay that way.

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