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UK wader and wildfowl numbers this winter (1 Viewer)

Andrea Collins

Beside the Duddon, Cumbria
Is anyone else thinking that wader and wildfowl numbers seem to be well down this winter?

I don't do any official counts so this is purely anecdotal. The south west corner of Cumbria tends to be a pretty good place for winter waders and wildfowl, but this year numbers seem to be very low. Goldeneye numbers in particular seem to be very low this winter, and Wigeon and Pintail likewise, whilst Scaup seems to be completely absent so far.

As far as waders are concerned, numbers of some of the usual common species seem to be low, eg Dunlin, Sanderling, Knot, although others seem to be typical, eg Grey Plover, Curlew, Redshanks, Turnstones, both Godwits.

Admittedly, it's early in the winter yet, and a variety of factors may be at work. The low water channels on my local estuary have changed a lot in recent years, and the number of people walking their dogs a long way out on the mud/sandflats has increased massively since before the first lockdown, so the birds may simply be somewhere else.

Is anyone else in the UK noticing an obvious difference in the numbers of wintering waterbirds this year?

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