Last year (2006) the BOC in conjunction with NDOC promoted a survey of the breeding status of red kites and buzzards in Berkshire. This survey, which was very informal and relied on information submitted by anyone who saw either species, was very successful. As well as providing a better picture of how extensively these two species had colonised the county (where they were rare 25 years ago). The survey involved a community of amateur bird watchers and gave them an opportunity to make a scientifically useful contribution.
Building on this success, the BOC and NDOC are organising a similar activity to look at the breeding status of swifts, swallows and house martins in Berkshire. All these birds have shown apparent declines in numbers since the last formal surveys were carried out during 1988 to 1991 as part of the Berkshire Bird Atlas work.
The main aims of the survey are to involve the Berkshire birdwatching community in a simple, useful and enjoyable activity, and to improve our understanding of the distribution and number of breeding swifts, swallows and house martins within Berkshire. i.e. to find out where they breed and in roughly what numbers.
Your participation is needed to help us assess the numbers and whereabouts of these colourful annual visitors in the current year from 15th April – 15th August. By submitting records of all sightings with behaviour and particularly locations of nest sites, you can help us build up a picture of their numbers in the county.
You can submit records by ONE of two ways:
Print off a postal recording form (in a larger format with Notes for Recording) and post records to: Berkshire Swift and Swallow Survey, 62 Northcott, Bracknell, RG12 7WS.
It should be emphasised that the organisers prefer you to use Method 1. This makes the gathering and interpreting of data much simpler. ALL reports however, will be gratefully received. Information must be received by 30th September 2007.
Help with Identification can be found by looking at Identification Notes which includes photographs and descriptions of each of the species.
If you have any queries, please email them to email@example.com.
All contributors will receive a copy of the results either electronically or by post when they become available.
Each year records of all species are collected from birdwatchers around the county and compiled into an annual report called The Birds of Berkshire which is published by the BOC and distributed freely to its members. Records are checked and verified by the County Recorder and Assistant Recorder.