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By Andrew Harrop, Dave Gamble, Rob Fray, Roger Davies, Steve Lister

The County Avifaunas are a becoming sequence of books, every one of which provides info of the prestige and variety of each species at the county checklist, with a close breakdown of rarity files. each one has introductory sections describing the county's ecology and habitats, weather, ornithological background and conservation list. This new avifauna covers Leicestershire and neighbouring Rutland, an sector with a very powerful birding culture - the Leicestershire & Rutland Ornithological Society is among the greatest county poultry golf equipment in Britain. The area holds a few of England's most crucial inland reservoirs, together with the biggest, Rutland Water. this large lake holds a few 10,000 wintering birds of various species every one yr, and has a magnificent rarity checklist in addition to a few of England's few breeding Ospreys. The county additionally has very important woodlands, gull roosts and river habitats. Rutland Water is the house of the British Birdwatching reasonable, an important exchange reasonable within the birding calendar.

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Extra resources for The Birds of Leicestershire and Rutland (Helm County Avifauna)

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These changes have all occurred in a short space of time and it will be interesting to see what new species feature regularly during the winter by the middle of the 21st century. 43 01 pp10-48 1705 30/6/09 14:43 Page 44 MIGRATION by Steve Lister INTRODUCTION Leicestershire and Rutland are unlikely to feature on many birdwatchers’ lists of the top counties for bird migration, given their position in the middle of England. Nevertheless, there is a mass of evidence gathered over the years that reveals substantial movement through and over the two counties.

The likely future impact of climate change could see, amongst others, the Cattle and Great White Egrets, Spoonbill, Hoopoe and European Bee-eater becoming regular British breeding species. On a more local level, plans for the development of new lagoons and an expansion of the reserve at Rutland Water may help species such as the Eurasian Teal and the Common Pochard to re-establish breeding populations. On the negative side, the further intensification of farming is a concern and could precipitate the local extinction of declining species like the Turtle Dove and the Corn Bunting.

Add to this scene the teeming mass of one of the counties’ large gull roosts and it is easy to see why many birdwatchers visit this land-locked area to view this fine spectacle. There are currently just under 30 regularly recorded species that occur either almost entirely as winter visitors to the counties or are present in much higher numbers in winter than at other times of year. The species involved are shown in Table 4. Table 4: Species recorded principally as winter visitors in Leicestershire and Rutland Species Bewick’s Swan Whooper Swan Eurasian Wigeon Eurasian Teal Common Pochard Greater Scaup Goldeneye Smew Goosander Merlin Water Rail Golden Plover Jack Snipe Common Snipe Common Gull Herring Gull Iceland Gull Glaucous Gull Great Black-backed Gull Short-eared Owl Waxwing Stonechat Fieldfare Redwing Brambling Siskin Lesser Redpoll Additional comments One summering record Small numbers summer One breeding record since 1995 (Rutland Water in 2002) Three breeding records since 1991 Occasional summer records Small numbers summer Occasional summer records Bred in seven years between 1947 and 2005 Bred until 1989 Bred during 19th century.

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