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.

Friday, 7 February 2020

Germany's breeding bird population in significant decline

The breeding bird population in Germany declined by around 14 million or eight percent between 1992 and 2016, the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) said on Wednesday.

The "significant decline" in the number of native birds in meadows, pastures, and fields has been continuing, according to an evaluation of thousands of data set by the agency.

"In the open agricultural landscapes, the population of breeding pairs has declined by about two million over a quarter of a century," BfN President Beate Jessel said.

With no changes to the negative trend in sight, the results underline the "urgency of reforms in agricultural policy," Jessel stressed.

Only in forests and smaller settlements have bird populations recovered "significantly in recent years." Between 2005 and 2016, the number of birds in German forests and settlements increased by around two million, noted the BfN, adding that little is understood about the reason for this "positive development."

The evaluation also found that local differences are still "remarkable" as species-rich bird communities have been preserved in the agricultural landscapes of northeastern Germany, where there are still sufficient structures for birds and insects.

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