Saturday, December 27, 2014
2014 brought mixed fortunes for East Anglia’s wildlife and, in a region which is naturally abundant in wild places and farmland habitats, there have been some stand-out moments – both good and bad – during the last 12-month cycle of the seasons.
A stone curlew
Although there has been a long-term decline in many farmland bird species, 2014 has been recognised as a good year for farming and conservation working together to reverse those trends.
In The Broads, grazing management of wet grassland has been helping lapwings return to the countryside in increasing numbers. The RSPB also reported the highest-ever numbers of breeding lapwings this summer at three reserves on the Suffolk coast
In The Brecks, stone curlews have recovered from two bad breeding seasons, which was attributed to a combination of good weather and sensitive farming practices. The population of the species in the area fell by 20pc in 2013, but this year’s improved weather saw the number of breeding pairs up to 240 by the end of the summer.