As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

Corncrakes as a Scottish breeding species 'under threat'

Numbers of one of Scotland's rarest birds remain "alarmingly low", conservationists have said.

Corncrakes migrate from Africa to breed on islands including Tiree, Lewis, Harris, Orkney and parts of Argyll and the north west Highlands.

The birds are counted by listening for the call of males.

RSPB Scotland said 870 males were recorded this summer in the core breeding areas. The figure was down from 897 in 2018.

In the last five years since 2014, when a high of 1,282 calling males were recorded, Scotland's corncrake population has decreased by more than 30%.

In recent years crofters have been encouraged to take measures to boost corncrake numbers.

European funding to support such initiatives was administered through the Scottish Rural Development Programme.

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