The 36th report of the Rare Breeding Birds Panel presents details of the status of rare breeding birds in the UK in 2009. The report includes details of 86 species or distinctive races that bred (or showed signs of doing so) in the UK in 2009, four more than in 2008. Two species appear for the first time (Ring-billed Gull and Pallid Swift) and five of the 86 did not feature in the 2008 report (Little Bittern, Subalpine Warbler, Waxwing, Bluethroat and Common Redpoll). A feature of recent years has been the number of rarer herons attempting to breed. Eurasian Bitterns continued their increase and range expansion in 2009, while Little Egrets topped 800 pairs for the first time. Cattle Egrets probably bred for the second year in a row, and two sites in southwest England held Little Bitterns, although no breeding was recorded in 2009. Other highlights included Corn Crakes and Cirl Buntings holding their own, breeding Icterine Warblers and record numbers of Cetti’s Warblers. A review of the RBBP list means that this is the last report that will feature Gadwall (this species, together with others including Little Tern and Cetti’s Warbler, is discussed in depth in this report) but five new species are to be added: Arctic Skua, Long-eared and Short-eared Owl, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker and Willow Tit.
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British Birds – how it works
BB 2000 Ltd, the company that owns and publishes British Birds, is run by a board of directors, all of whom are volunteers. The company employs two full time staff – Roger Riddington is the journal’s editor while Hazel Jenner manages subscriptions and administration – and three part-time design/editorial staff.
The company is wholly owned by The British Birds Charitable Trust (BBCT, registered charity no. 1089422). Neither the company directors nor the trustees are paid for their services, providing their time and enthusiasm because they passionately believe in the value of BB. The Company is managed with a view to making a small profit which can be donated to the Trust to help fund its charitable work.
Over the past six years, this, combined with donations from other sources, has enabled the Trust to give almost £40,000 support to a variety of conservation and educational projects ranging from rat eradication on seabird islands to the study of cuckoo migration, as well as assisting young birders develop their interest.
A full list of projects is given here. The Trust is seeking to expand its charitable endeavours and would welcome donations from like-minded organisations and individuals.