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Updated: Oct 5, 2022

The days are getting shorter, the nights are getting longer, and here at Tyrer our thoughts are turning to wintering bird surveys. As our summer visitors head south to warmer climates, we have an influx of seasonal species to the U.K, including Whooper Swan, Bewick’s Swan, and of course Pink-footed Geese or “Pinkies” which migrate in from deep in the northern hemisphere where they breed over the summer. Nesting in cliffs and foraging for tundra vegetation in Greenland, Iceland, and Svalbard, Pinkies incubate eggs for 27 days, before raising the goslings for 56 days prior to fledging.

These Geese begin to arrive at our shores in September where they will stay until April, feeding on a variety of grasses, seeds and tubers. Look out for their distinctive pink feet, their loud, honking two-part call, and their classic goose V-shape flock when flying; individual flocks can be massive, with numbers of over 60,000 birds!

Pink-footed Geese, Bewick’s and Whooper Swans, in the northwest, are species cited for a number of internationally important sites, including Martin Mere and the Ribble & Alt Estuaries. Where development may result in potential impacts to these species, surveys for these species are typically required, which is where we come in. We establish a vantage point over a development site and record bird activity over periods of three hours at a time, and use our findings to determine whether or not wintering birds will be affected by a development. We then come up with a management plan to ensure the Pinkies are properly looked after whilst achieving a successful application for our clients.

Do you need wintering bird surveys this winter? We can survey for you from September to March. Contact us now to book your surveys in!

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