Monday, August 01, 2011

Bird Atlas - A big THANK YOU to contributors

We seem never to stop adding dots to maps of bird distribution in Pembrokeshire. Even after 5 years of local breeding bird atlas-bashing (2003-07) with the possibility of "atlas fatigue" setting in, many observers we have continued to work hard for the National Atlas.

Four winters have been covered well between 2007/08 and 2010/11. All c.500 Pembs tetrads were visited to obtain species distribution records and timed-visits were made to more than a third of these. The latter will provide patterns of relative species abundance across the County - we have achieved more than the minimum coverage needed for this component.

We have made similarly excellent progress for the summer breeding birds component (2008 - 2011), as in winter, meeting all our TTV requirements. Although there are still about 30 out of c.500 tetrads without summer records, the bulk of species have been recorded sufficiently well to contribute the distribution and confirmed breeding status data required for the national picture.

With so far just under 112,000 records of more than 200 species in winter and a similar number in summer now added by more than 300 observers it has been a fantastic achievement - a very big thanks to all of you who contributed records on line or on paper!

But we know there are some gaps that can still be filled, so if you have any outstanding records to add to the Atlas from anywhere, please do so as it would be nice to know that the picture for Pembs is as complete as it can be.

We note, for example, there are no records at all of Spotted Flycatchers in 10km sq SN14 (North Pembs Cardigan/Teifi area). Surely there must be a pair or two in the area?

Also, of the just 149 records of Cuckoo entered to the Atlas in Pembrokeshire during the last four summers, none of these have confirmed breeding status, yet this has been reported only recently on the Blog. It would be great if extra records like this could be added to the Atlas.

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