Waders on the coast

wadertales

The UK’s wetlands, estuaries andnon-estuarinecoast are of international importance because of the numbers ofwaders that they support, with over a third of Europe’s wintering Oystercatcher, Ringed Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, Black-tailed Godwit and Knot. (There’s more about these proportions in the WaderTales blogs: Ireland’s wintering waders and Do population estimates matter?).

Wintering waders on the UK’s estuaries are counted every month but those on the 17,000 km of open coast are only counted once a decade. There are good reasons for this disparity, given the much higher development pressures on estuaries and the need for regular monitoring of sites that are designated and protected, but this does mean that we have very little information about wintering Purple Sandpipers, the vast majority of which are not covered by monthly Wetland Bird Surveys (WeBS). Over three-quarters of the UK’s Ringed Plovers are missed too, along with over half of the Sanderling and…

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