Articles
Here you will find a wide range of birding related articles from various organisations, conservation bodies as well as individual accounts of rare bird finds and other interesting articles.
 
 
 
 
Weekly birding round-up: 8 - 14 January   (Weekly Roundup)
Stuart Piner brings you a comprehensive roundup of the week's best birds from around Britain, Ireland and the WP. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
Two new taxa added to the British list   (British List)
The British Ornithologists' Union Records Committee (BOURC) has added Taiga Merlin and North American Horned Lark to the British List. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
Bushfires update: a message from BirdLife Australia   (Conservation News)
BirdLife Australia, provides an update of the situation so far, and the urgent actions needed to help Australia's birds and habitats to survive. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
Critically Endangered antwren receives its first protected area   (Conservation News)
Some good news for the the tiny, Critically Endangered antbird which lives in isolated populations on marshland just 50km from Sao Paulo. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
10 new bird taxa discovered in islands of Wallacea   (Research)
Researchers from NUS Biological Sciences, found the birds in three small island groups off Sulawesi, Indonesia. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
HS2 - new report reveals exorbitant cost to nature   (Conservation News)
A new report published by The Wildlife Trusts reveals the vast scale of the destruction and impact that HS2 will cause to nature. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
RBA Annual Rarity Roundup 2019: Part 2   (Annual Rarity Review)
David Campbell concludes his look back at the rarity highlights of 2019 and what would prove to be a mega autumn with the highlight for many being the Brown Booby in Cornwall. More here >
Written by:  (15 Jan 2020)
 
 
Weekly birding round-up: 2 - 7 January   (Weekly Roundup)
Stuart Piner steps in for Jon Dunn this week with a comprehensive roundup of the week's best birds from around Britain, Ireland and the WP. More here >
Written by:  (08 Jan 2020)
 
 
Conservation action has reduced bird extinction rates by 40%   (Conservation News)
A new study shows that global conservation action has reduced the effective extinction rate of birds by an astonishing 40%. More here >
Written by:  (08 Jan 2020)
 
 
£156k award to protect Scotland's Curlews   (Conservation News)
SNH has confirmed that a project to help one of Scotland's most threatened breeding bird species will be a recipient of the Scottish Government's Biodiversity Challenge Fund More here >
Written by:  (08 Jan 2020)
 
 
A world first: Madagascar Pond-herons fitted with GPS trackers   (Conservation News)
Six Madagascar Pond-herons have been satellite-tagged as part of a study to try to save the endangered species. More here >
Written by:  (07 Jan 2020)
 
 
Hooded Seal found in County Cork   (News)
A sub-adult male Hooded Seal was found at Toormore Bay, in County Cork on New Year's Day and represents only the fourth record for Ireland. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Another mass poisoning in Zululand causes alarm for the future of vultures in the region   (Wildlife crime)
Unfortunately, yet another mass poisoning incident occurred in Africa, ending 2019 on a sad note for vulture conservation. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Weekly birding round-up: 24 Dec - 1 January   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn brings you his first weekly birding roundup of the new decade. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Vietnam seizes two tonnes of ivory and pangolin scales   (Wildlife crime)
More bad news for the species as 1.7 tonnes of pangolin scales are seized in Vietnam. The Pangolin is now considered the world's most trafficked animal. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Falcons see prey at speed of Formula 1 car   (Research)
Researchers hope the new knowledge can hopefully contribute to better conditions for birds held in captivity. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Solved: mystery of 'ornamented' coot chicks has surprising explanation   (Research)
The ornamental plumage in newly hatched American coot chicks is associated with a higher feeding rate for the youngest surviving chicks. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Fresh hope for Spoon-billed Sandpipers after chicks hatch   (Conservation News)
The world's rarest wader has been thrown a lifeline after two Spoon-billed Sandpiper chicks hatched at WWT Slimbridge in Gloucestershire. More here >
Written by:  (02 Jan 2020)
 
 
Merry Christmas from the RBA Team   (News)
A Christmas message to all our subscribers

More here >
Written by:  (24 Dec 2019)
 
 
Weekly birding round-up: 18 - 23 Dec   (Weekly Roundup)
Christmas has come a day early as Jon Dunn brings you his final weekly birding roundup of 2019. More here >
Written by:  (24 Dec 2019)
 
 
RBA Annual Rarity Roundup 2019: Part 1   (Annual Rarity Review)
David Cambell looks back on the first half of 2019 which included Britain's first twitchable Tengmalm's Owl. More here >
Written by:  (24 Dec 2019)
 
 
Bringing the 'rice bird' back to Hong Kong   (Conservation News)
A new project is bringing rice paddies back to Hong Kong, along with the birds that depend on them, such as the Yellow-breasted Bunting. More here >
Written by:  (24 Dec 2019)
 
 
New Zealand becomes the first country to approve and adopt the British Hookpod   (Conservation News)
Hookpod virtually eliminates deaths of albatross and other seabirds in pelagic long line fishing. More here >
Written by:  (23 Dec 2019)
 
 
RSPB Scotland responds to Scotland's Plans for offshore wind launched recently   (Press report)
Marine Scotland has launched draft plans for new offshore wind projects, but offshore wind poses a risk to Scotland's natural marine environment, especially its internationally important numbers of seabirds. More here >
Written by: RSPB (20 Dec 2019)
 
 
Where are all the Turtle Doves and Partridges?   (Research)
The latest BirdTrends report from the British Trust for Ornithology shows a very mixed bag for our birds, with some showing marked increases and others in steep decline. More here >
Written by: BTO (20 Dec 2019)
 
 
Weekly birding round-up: 11 - 17 Dec   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn brings us another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (18 Dec 2019)
 
 
Rare Breeding Birds Panel seeks new Secretary   (News)
After almost 14 years Mark Holling is standing down as Secretary and applications for the part-time role are now open. More here >
Written by:  (17 Dec 2019)
 
 
Scottish Short-eared Owl tracked to Morocco's 'Oyster Capital'   (Research)
A Short-eared Owl, fitted with a satellite tag while breeding in Scotland, has been tracked to Morocco, revealing significant new information for BTO researchers. More here >
Written by:  (17 Dec 2019)
 
 
Kent's Heath Fritillary butterfly hit new highs in 2019   (Conservation News)
Wildlife charity Butterfly Conservation has revealed that one of the UK's rarest butterflies had an exceptional year in Kent in 2019. More here >
Written by:  (17 Dec 2019)
 
 
UK insects make a bee-line for foreign plants   (Research)
Non-native plants are providing new homes for Britain's insects - some of which are rare on native plants, a new study has found. More here >
Written by:  (17 Dec 2019)
 
 
Norfolk seals die after human disturbance   (Wildlife crime)
The public are being urged to keep their distance from seals at Winterton beach after three seal pups died in three days due to human disturbance and a dog attack. More here >
Written by:  (17 Dec 2019)
 
 
Cley NWT plans to introduce new car-parking charges   (News)
NWT has applied for planning permission to install pay & display machines in the main centre car park, and at Cley Beach road carpark. More here >
Written by:  (16 Dec 2019)
 
 
Review: Moult and Ageing of European Passerines: Second Edition   (Book of the Month)
Published by Helm, this second edition is completely revised, updated and improved with nearly 100 additional pages. More here >
Written by:  (13 Dec 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 4 - 10 Dec   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn brings us another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (11 Dec 2019)
 
 
Shot Hen Harrier found dead on grouse moor whilst two others 'disappear'   (Wildlife crime)
A member of the public found the dead female bird on a grouse moor on the Dumfries-shire/South Lanarkshire boundary. More here >
Written by:  (10 Dec 2019)
 
 
House mice seen attacking adult albatrosses for the first time   (Conservation News)
This is the first time this behaviour has been documented on Gough island with previous footage showing the mice attacking and devouring the chicks. More here >
Written by:  (10 Dec 2019)
 
 
WWT hero stops invasive plant from reaching nature reserve   (Conservation News)
A Senior Technology Officer at Slimbridge has all but eradicated Himalayan Balsam from the canal during his lunchtime running sessions. More here >
Written by:  (10 Dec 2019)
 
 
Start of winter brings first 'swanfall' at WWT Slimbridge   (News)
The start of December, and a dip in temperatures, has seen the first 'swanfall' at WWT Slimbridge.
More here >
Written by:  (10 Dec 2019)
 
 
A falcon in free fall - Saving the Saker in Kyrgyzstan   (Conservation News)
Sakers are highly-prized amongst falconers and the trade in wild-caught birds is threatening the species.
More here >
Written by:  (10 Dec 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 27 Nov - 3 Dec   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn brings us another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (04 Dec 2019)
 
 
Tufted Puffins stay cool thanks to their large bill   (Research)
Tufted Puffins regulate their body temperature thanks to their large bills, an evolutionary trait that might explain their capacity to fly for long periods in search for food. More here >
Written by:  (02 Dec 2019)
 
 
Hen Harrier Ada 'disappears' on grouse moor in North Pennines AONB   (Wildlife crime)
Northumbria Police and the RSPB have issued an appeal for information following the sudden disappearance of yet another satellite-tagged Hen Harrier, a female bird known as Ada. More here >
Written by:  (02 Dec 2019)
 
 
Red Kite poisoned in Nidderdale   (Wildlife Crime)
North Yorkshire Police and the RSPB are appealing for information after a protected Red Kite was found poisoned in North Yorkshire. More here >
Written by:  (02 Dec 2019)
 
 
Did human hunting activities alone drive Great Auks' extinction?   (Research)
Findings of new research suggest that intense hunting by humans could have caused the rapid extinction of the Great Auk. More here >
Written by:  (28 Nov 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 20 - 26 Nov   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn brings us another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (27 Nov 2019)
 
 
Sumatran Rhino is extinct in Malaysia as lone survivor dies   (News)
The female rhino, named Iman, who had cancer has died, just six months after the death of the last surviving male. More here >
Written by:  (26 Nov 2019)
 
 
New boat launched to help protect Curlews   (Conservation News)
A brand new cot - a vessel for transporting livestock and machinery on and off the islands of Lower Lough Erne - has been launched by conservation charity RSPB NI. More here >
Written by:  (26 Nov 2019)
 
 
Galapagos Island finches still spooked a decade after predators have gone   (Research)
On some Galapagos Islands where human-introduced predators were eradicated, finches are still acting as though they are in danger. More here >
Written by:  (26 Nov 2019)
 
 
New atlas shows changes for British and Irish moths   (Conservation News)
The newly published Atlas of Britain and Ireland's Larger Moths have revealed that our moths are on the move. More here >
Written by:  (26 Nov 2019)
 
 
Moult and Ageing in European Passerines    (News)
Pre-Publication Offer: Thanks to our friends at WildSounds we can bring you this excellent pre-publication offer on this stunning new book. More here >
Written by:  (26 Nov 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 13 - 19 Nov   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn brings us another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by: Jon Dunn (20 Nov 2019)
 
 
Human hair may be causing pigeons to lose their toes    (Research)
Researchers believe that pigeons lose their toes in greater numbers when there are more hairdressers in the area. More here >
Written by:  (19 Nov 2019)
 
 
Ancient Egyptians gathered birds from the wild for sacrifice and mummification   (Research)
New DNA study rejects the idea that Egyptians domesticated sacred ibis for ritual use. More here >
Written by:  (19 Nov 2019)
 
 
First evidence of the impact of climate change on Arctic Terns   (Research)
Data collected from electronic tags retrieved from 47 journeys made by the Farne Island Arctic Terns, has revealed for the first time how climate change might affect their behaviour. More here >
Written by:  (19 Nov 2019)
 
 
Jackdaw mobs flip from chaos to order as they grow   (Research)
Chaotic mobs of jackdaws suddenly get organised once enough birds join in, new research shows. More here >
Written by:  (19 Nov 2019)
 
 
New leader for The Wildlife Trusts   (News)
One of the UKss leading environmental campaigners, Craig Bennett, has been appointed as the new CEO of The Wildlife Trusts. More here >
Written by:  (19 Nov 2019)
 
 
John Brodie Good: funeral details   (News)
This coming Wednesday we will say goodbye to our dear friend John Brodie Good. Details of his funeral can be found here for those wishing to attend, to pay their respects and to celebrate his life. More here >
Written by:  (15 Nov 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 6 - 12 Nov   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon provides another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (13 Nov 2019)
 
 
Millions of monarch butterflies killed on Texas highways   (News)
Monarch butterflies are moving south through Texas on their annual autumn migration to overwintering sites in Central Mexico. More here >
Written by:  (13 Nov 2019)
 
 
Belgium's first wolf in 100 years is presumed dead   (News)
Naya, the first wolf in Belgium for more than 100 years may have been killed . A £30,000 reward has been offered after presumed death due to hunters. More here >
Written by:  (13 Nov 2019)
 
 
First confirmed sighting of a Ruppell's Vulture in Italy   (News)
On the 2nd of October, a Ruppell's Vulture was sighted and photographed in the area of Alcara Li Fusi by Michele Ungaro. More here >
Written by:  (11 Nov 2019)
 
 
Study finds sex bias in bird conservation plans   (Research)
Strategies have typically overlooked the habitats needed by females, putting already-declining species in even more peril, according to a new study. More here >
Written by:  (11 Nov 2019)
 
 
Emperor Penguins could march to extinction if climate change not halted   (Research)
If climate change continues at its current rate, Emperor Penguins could disappear by 2100 due to loss of Antarctic sea ice. More here >
Written by:  (11 Nov 2019)
 
 
North Sea discarded fish feeds millions of seabirds   (Research)
University of Exeter scientists estimate that 267,000 tonnes of fish was discarded in the North Sea in 2010 enough to feed 3.45 million birds. More here >
Written by:  (11 Nov 2019)
 
 
Glimmers of hope for UK's wild birds   (Conservation News)
The Wild Bird Populations in the UK 1970-2018 report is an annual stocktake of a suite of species groups.
More here >
Written by:  (07 Nov 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 30 Oct - 5 Nov   (Weekly Roundup)
David Campbell provides another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Gannets travel hundreds of miles just to catch food   (Research)
Scientists recorded thousands of Gannets commuting to and from the Bass Rock, in the outer part of the Firth of Forth in Eastern Scotland. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Young naturalist receives RSPB award for his conservation campaigning   (News)
Dara McAnulty has been awarded the RSPB Medal at the nature conservation charity's AGM in recognition of the Co Down teenager's contributions to conservation. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Migratory birds are worse off in West Africa   (Research)
Researchers have challenged the widely held idea that the costs of longer migratory flights are inevitably offset by benefits in the winter habitats. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Gardenwatch: first findings on how we can improve gardens for wildlife   (Conservation News)
Gardens provide important space for our wildlife, but they could provide even more, according to preliminary results from Gardenwatch. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Scientists identify butterflies most threatened by climate change   (Conservation News)
Scientists have discovered why climate change may be contributing to the decline of some British butterflies and moths, such as Silver-studded Blue and High Brown Fritillary butterflies. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Government urged to ban burning on peatland   (Conservation News)
Twenty-six environmental charities, NGOs and associations are calling on the government to end the scandal of burning on peatland. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
Flock of Short-toed Eagles believed shot over Malta   (Wildlife crime)
A flock of around 15 birds were spotted by members of BirdLife Malta but it seems likely that most of them were shot. More here >
Written by:  (06 Nov 2019)
 
 
John Brodie Good (1958-2019)   (News)
Birder, WildWings founder and great friend to all of us here at RBA, sadly passed away on Tuesday 29th Oct, details of his funeral have now been released. More here >
Written by: Rare Bird Alert (04 Nov 2019)
 
 
Two satellite-tagged eagles disappear on the same day   (Wildlife crime)
The two birds are the latest in a long line to go missing in highly suspicious circumstances on grouse moors. More here >
Written by:  (04 Nov 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 23 - 29 Oct   (Weekly Roundup)
Chris Batty provides another comprehensive roundup of the week's birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by: Chris Batty (30 Oct 2019)
 
 
The Azores: Birding on Corvo in October 2019   (Personal Account)
Paul French's first autumn birding trip to Corvo in the Azores turns out to be a very memorable one, with amongst many American birds, the first Prothonotary Warbler for the Western Palearctic More here >
Written by: Paul French (29 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Swainson's Thrush and more, St.Mary's, Scilly   (Finders account)
Will Scott recounts a fantastic time on Scilly this autumn, culminating in the finding of a Swainson's Thrush. More here >
Written by: Will Scott (28 Oct 2019)
 
 
UK wetlands get a health check   (Conservation News)
Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS) Alerts, highlight how well protected wetland sites in Great Britain and Northern Ireland are working for wintering waterbirds. More here >
Written by: BTO (28 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Myrtle Warbler, Callernish, North Uist   (Finders account)
On North Uist in the Western Isles Brian Rabbitts decides to look for migrants at Callernish and finds a delightful Myrtle Warbler More here >
Written by: Brian Rabbitts (26 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Bobolink, Theddlethorpe, Lincolnshire   (Finders account)
Tom Hibbert describes finding a Bobolink on the English east coast in Lincolnshire. More here >
Written by: Tom Hibbert (25 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders in the Field: Two-barred Greenish Warbler, Suffolk   (Finders account)
Mark Cornish describes finding Suffolk's first Two-barred Greenish Warbler on his first day out after having flu. More here >
Written by: Mark Cornish (25 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders in the Field.. The one that got away   (Finders account)
Tim Vaughan recounts the ecstasy and agony of finding a Chestnut-eared Bunting that 'got away' on Scilly. More here >
Written by: Tim Vaughan (24 Oct 2019)
 
 
Train collision kills 15 vultures in North East Spain   (News)
The collision occurred on the line between Monzon and Binefar whilst the vultures were feeding on a wild boar carcass. More here >
Written by:  (23 Oct 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 16 - 22 Oct   (Weekly Roundup)
Chris Batty rounds up another mega week of birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (23 Oct 2019)
 
 
Spurn Motus Network: 'Project Yellow-browed'   (Conservation News)
As the exciting new era for bird recording gets up and running at Spurn there is news of the first UK Motus detection. More here >
Written by:  (23 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Isles of Scilly   (Finders account)
Chris Townend describes finding a Rose-breasted Grosbeak on one of the less-watched islands, St.Martin's. More here >
Written by:  (22 Oct 2019)
 
 
Warmer nights prompt birds to lay eggs earlier   (Research)
Breeding patterns of birds such as blue tits are being altered as evenings in spring get warmer, researchers say. More here >
Written by:  (22 Oct 2019)
 
 
New flowerpecker species described in Borneo   (Research)
First spotted a decade ago the species has now been fully described and named to honour the people who live in and are working to protect its habitat. More here >
Written by:  (22 Oct 2019)
 
 
The lunar cycle drives the Nightjar's migration   (Research)
GPS tracking data reveals that the foraging activity of the European Nightjar more than doubles during moon-lit nights, and the birds then migrate simultaneously about 10 days after the full moon. More here >
Written by:  (22 Oct 2019)
 
 
White Bellbirds set new record for loudest bird call   (Research)
Now recognized as the loudest in the world, bellbird calls have a sound pressure about three times that of screaming pihas, another Amazon species. More here >
Written by:  (22 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Siberian Rubythroat, Tresta, Fetlar   (Finders account)
With a little help from a herniated disc in his back, Phil Woollen makes the dream find of a male Siberian Rubythroat on Fetlar. More here >
Written by:  (21 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Common Nighthawk, Bushy Park, London   (Finders account)
Lewis Newman makes a quite unbelievable discovery in Bushy Park in London when he photographs a Common Nighthawk which was previously present in Northern Ireland. More here >
Written by:  (20 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Rufous-tailed Robin, Fetlar   (Finders account)
Following submission of his PhD, Andrew Tongue headed to Shetland for a two week trip in the hope of finding something rare... More here >
Written by:  (17 Oct 2019)
 
 
Weekly Birding Roundup 9 - 15 Oct   (Weekly Roundup)
Jon Dunn rounds up another mega week of birds from around Britain, Ireland and the Western Palearctic. More here >
Written by:  (16 Oct 2019)
 
 
Public spaces to be filled with Birdsong this October   (News)
The RSPB will bring birdsong to over five-million people by linking up with businesses and supporters to play birdsong around the UK on Thursday 17 October. More here >
Written by:  (15 Oct 2019)
 
 
Finders-in-the-Field: Black-and-white Warbler, St.Martin's, Isles of Scilly   (Finders account)
Whilst on a visit to a vineyard on St.Martin's, Michael Knight and his wife spotted a small black-and-white bird they didn't recognise. More here >
Written by:  (15 Oct 2019)
 
 
Review: Birds in Winter: surviving the most challenging season   (Book review)
This book explores the ecology of birds in winter, how they prepare for and survive the challenges of the non-breeding season. More here >
Written by:  (15 Oct 2019)
 
 
Review: Opticron Imagic IS 10x30 & 12x30   (Product Review)
Birder and artist Ray Scally gets his hands on Opticron's new range of image stabilised binoculars.
More here >
Written by:  (15 Oct 2019)
 
 
Rare moth returns to Cornwall after 10-year absence   (News)
A caterpillar of the elusive Narrow-bordered Bee Hawk-moth was found on Goss Moor National Nature Reserve near Victoria in late June. More here >
Written by:  (15 Oct 2019)
 
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