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Manchester Endangered Species (1 Viewer)

Charles Harper

Régisseur
Excerpted from the Guardian:

"[Most endangered species:] the spotted fly-catcher, a migrating bird whose numbers have fallen by 62 per cent in woodlands since the 1960s. Very scarce across Greater Manchester. Numbers hit by global warming and loss of nest sites. Other species in danger are the skylark, linnet, reed bunting, tree sparrow, grey partridge, bullfinch, song thrush and grass-wrack pondweed.

Five problem species in Manchester include: American mink which was first brought to Britain in 1929 to be bred for fur. It preys on the water vole and water birds; the Canada goose damages the environment through feeding habits and its waste can encourage the growth of algae and other water-borne species. Terrapins are often dumped in lakes by bored owners - even though it is against the law. They can attack small amphibians and young waterfowl. The feral pigeon takes food from other birds and can foul and damage open space. The rhododendron, a decorative shrub popular in Victorian Britain, wipes out other plants."
 

TonyC

Well-known member
I didn't see the article - but there was a small reserve at Sale Water Park which was totally overrun with some 'alien' pond weed. I think they made a big effort to clear it all last year.

On the other hand there's whole thickets of Buddleia along the railway tracks which must be a boost to butterflies.

In todays Guardian there's mention of an even bigger threat - one of the last decent bits of woodland in Manchester - Botany Bay Wood, is threatened by a new Horse Race Track.
 
They're wrong on the reasons for the decline in Spotted Flycatchers - not global warming, but excessive use of pesticides and other insecticidal pollutants

Michael
 

pauco

Старлин&
Michael Frankis said:
They're wrong on the reasons for the decline in Spotted Flycatchers - not global warming, but excessive use of pesticides and other insecticidal pollutants

Michael
Spot on Michael :clap:
 

TonyC

Well-known member
There's an article on Woolston Eyes reserve in the CAWOS newsletter. 10 pairs of Black-necked Grebes raised only 5 young. Large numbers of small young were seen, but these steadily disappeared over a few weeks - most likely fell to a predator, either Mink or Terrapins.
English Nature are proposing a meeting to discuss the problem.
 

Anthony Morton

Well-known member
QUOTE = TonyC

There's an article on Woolston Eyes reserve in the CAWOS newsletter. 10 pairs of Black-necked Grebes raised only 5 young. Large numbers of small young were seen, but these steadily disappeared over a few weeks - most likely fell to a predator, either Mink or Terrapins.

Are pike present in the water? If so, this could be another possibility.
 

Jasonbirder

Jason-occasional-twitcher
I thinks its a bit of an old wives tale Pike taking Ducklings etc - its something i never encountered in years and years of dedicated Pike Fishing!
 
Hi Jason,

I know of a swan ringer who has seen a fish, presumed to be a Pike, pull an adult Mute Swan half underwater and backwards quite a distance, before the swan was able to get away.

Michael
 

Charles Harper

Régisseur
What kind of pike you got, Jason? A Northern Pike will try to take anything that moves. Don't even trail your hand over the gunnels...
 

Jasonbirder

Jason-occasional-twitcher
I`ve regularly heard tales like that and also dafter ones such as paddling dogs/children bitten etc - whilst I have no doubt that occasionally Pike will take small waterfowl - its an extremely rare method of hunting for them and will be restricted to unusual individuals, here in the UK Pike typically average less than 10 pounds in weight - in lowland lakes and rivers it is extremely unusual for them to get any larger than 15lbs. 20lb+ fish tend to be restricted to large deep clear lakes, gravel pits and reservoirs with large fish stocks (IE Trout reservoirs etc) - by the time they get to that size they tend to feed more regularly on dead fish, becoming scavangers in their old age!
 

Jasonbirder

Jason-occasional-twitcher
Not to say it never happens, but the "Pike eating all the Ducks" story is a bit of an urban myth - often put around by fishermen who want the Pike culled in a particular water because they are worried that they`ll eat all the fish in a lake (shades of our Sparrowhawk argument here - large Pike in a water is an indication of a healthy ecosystem)
A Pike eating a swan though, yikes! Swans are huge! I mean you wouldn`t want to grab one yourself for all the fuss and fight they`d put up! The largest Pike i`ve ever caught (24lbs if anyones interested!) was taken on a little Gudgeon about 4 inches long.....
 
Hi Jason,

The person who saw it reckons the pike got hold of a foot, without realising what was on the other end - and the swan did get away, it wasn't eaten

Michael
 

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