British Birds January 2014

Published on 10 January 2014 in Latest issues

Jan 14 coverBB eye A place for the misfit

The Great White Egret in Europe: population increase and range expansion since 1980 The European breeding and non-breeding populations of the Great White Egret have increased dramatically since 1980. During this period the breeding range has expanded to the north and west, and the species has nested for the first time in 13 countries, including Sweden and England. Changes in the availability of foraging habitat and food, the cessation of persecution and related human-induced mortality, improved legal protection, and climate change have probably all played a part in the patterns described here.

The vocalisations of ‘Ehrenberg’s Redstart’ The vocalisations of ‘Ehrenberg’s Redstart’ Phoenicurus phoenicurus samamisicus are analysed and compared with those of the nominate race. There is considerable variation in the song of both races, but three parts can usually be distinguished. In samamisicus, the introduction is variable and only rarely does it consist solely of a clear whistle similar to that of nominate phoenicurus. On its own, the call does not seem to provide a reliable means of separating the races.

Letters The impact of human observers on nest success; The Seabird Group

Notes Black Kite drop-catching; European Nightjar caught by Peregrine Falcons in London; Firecrest displaying to female Goldcrest; Kleptoparasitism by a Robin; Dunnock climbing dry-stone wall; Grey Squirrel predating House Sparrow nest

Obituaries Martin Withers, 1946-2013; Michael Shrubb, 1934-2013

News & comment, Book reviews and Recent reports complete the January issue.

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