The Greenshank. By Desmond Nethersole-Thompson (Collins, 1951). 15s. In The Handbook's account of the Greenshank it was evident t h a t much of our knowledge of the species was due to Mr. Nethersole-Thompson, but it needed the publication of this book to show how much he has learnt about one of the most difficult to study of all British birds. It combines so much interesting information and original observation in a well-arranged and readable narrative t h a t it is certain to give lasting enjoyment and instruction to a much wider circle than those who can claim to know the bird well, or who find pleasure in catching frequent echoes and reminders of a walk with its author through the Cairngorm country. The picture given of the Greenshank's distribution in Britain is fairly detailed, and the author suggests t h a t there may be some 300 to 500 pairs nesting in Scotland ; in his own area there have lately been from 15 to 28 pairs on about 133,000 acres. Taking simply the ground actually occupied as territory, density has varied from roughly one pair to 275 acres to one pair to over 700 acres, but cases are given of four pairs on about 400 acres. For comparison the author records breeding densities per 1,000 acres of about 11-15 pairs of Crested Tits and about 16 pairs of Scottish Crossbills. In 1935 he found 25-28 pairs of Golden Plover and 17-20 of Curlew on the same area
Issue 7

Stay at the forefront of British birding by taking out a subscription to British Birds.

Subscribe Now