Nature Blog Network

Moorland birds

The coming of spring sees the return of moorland birds in greater numbers. A recent jaunt up Saunder Height confirmed the return of meadow pipits and lapwings, no skylarks as yet. The ubiquitous crows are there of course and have recently been joined by common gulls, a less welcome sight.

The conservation watcher website has a graphic of moorland birds plotted against habitat - deep heather, grazed heather and short grass.
http://www.conservationwatcher.com/grazingandmoorlandbirds.RSPB.2001.html

This suggests that short grass, like Saunder Height which is pretty well grazed, is preferred by wheatear, skylark, golden plover and snipe with mipi, curlew, snipe and whinchat also populating. Saunder Height seems to fit this with last year’s reports to the BTO birdwatch consisting mainly of skylarks, meadow pipits and lapwings. Together with crows and gulls of course. They are joined by the occasional wheatear, not many curlew and no golden plover or whinchat as yet.