One of the
rarest birds is being put at further risk by the cold spring, the RSPB has
The bodies of eight underweight stone curlews have been discovered in fields in
Norfolk, and Wiltshire
over the past few days. Suffolk
The birds are thought to have come from Africa and
struggled to find enough food to survive. Spain
Conservation director Martin Harper said it was a "stark reminder of how fragile this species is".
The birds weighed about 300g (10oz) compared to what is considered a healthy weight of 450g (15oz).
The RSPB said there were about 400 pairs of stone curlews in the
Other birds have been affected by the cold weather.
At the end of March, hundreds of dead birds including puffins were washed ashore after severe conditions in the
The RSPB said it had also received reports of short-eared owls and barn owls found dead after cold weather hampered their ability to hunt.
Mr Harper said: "We should be hearing the sound of chiffchaffs calling from the trees, a classic sign that spring is here, but that isn't the case.
"Some may have stalled on their migration route, while for others the severe lack of insect food available means they are conserving what little energy they have."