Britain’s migrating birds are declining in number

 Over half of the UK’s summer migrant birds, such as the nightingale, show long-term population decline. Photograph: Alamy

Over half of the UK’s summer migrant birds, such as the nightingale, show long-term population decline. Photograph: Alamy

Birds that make the great journey between northern Europe and Africa are declining in number, conservationists warn.

Nearly half of the 29 species of so-called summer migrants, who appear in the UK in spring to breed before returning in the autumn, show long-term population declines.

The nightingale, famed for its song and for inspiring English poets, is one of a group of birds that overwinter in Sierra Leone, Senegal, the Gambia and Burkina Faso in West Africa that are suffering particularly badly. Of this group of 11 species that spend winter in Africa’s ‘humid zone’, eight are declining in number. Continue reading

Study reveals decline of 16 birds species in the UK

willow-by-David-Merrett-via-flickr-241x260Conservation charities have warned that numbers of 16 out of the 107 most common birds in Britain have declined because of habitat loss, while 32 species are facing extinction in overseas territories.

The annual State of the UK’s birds report by the RSPB, the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO), the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust and the UK Government’s statutory nature conservation bodies, has provided an insight into the plights of the country’s most common bird species. Continue reading