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Skydancer

Skydancer
Get the latest news on our hen harrier conservation work, including the five-year Hen Harrier Life+ project.
Results for ringtail, hen harrier
  • Blog Post: First hen harriers tagged as part of the LIFE+ project

    Bea Ayling (Hen Harrier LIFE+ Project Manager) In June and July, a number of hen harrier chicks across England and Scotland were satellite tagged as part of the RSPB’s new Hen Harrier LIFE+ Project. The project seeks to better understand the movements of these magnificent birds to help identify...
  • Blog Post: Happy New Year from Bowland

    With little movement from Burt and Highlander since my last update (still residing in North Cumbria and the South Pennines respectively), this blog is simply an excuse to share some photographs (all my own unless stated otherwise) and experiences with you of a place that is really special to me. I’m...
  • Blog Post: The Dee’s the place to be

    I was only a kid, ten or eleven I think, but I can still picture it now – my first ever hen harrier. My mum used to take me there on Sunday afternoons hoping to catch a glimpse of a bird I’d dreamt about seeing in real life after drooling over the plates of it in my Mitchell Beazley bird...
  • Blog Post: Working with hen harriers - the highs and the lows

    I am pleased to present a guest blog from Mick Demain, the RSPB's seasonal assistant warden in Bowland for the last few years, reflecting on his last few years monitoring harriers Being the seasonal warden for the RSPB in Bowland means I am privileged to be working with raptors every day and undoubtedly...
  • Blog Post: Four more harriers in Bowland!

    So here are the newest additions to the English hen harrier population! © Mick Demain, RSPB. While the five young from the first nest are all flying well now, these little ones in the second nest still have a fair bit of growing before they see the world from above the heather. Given the...
  • Blog Post: Watching and waiting in Northumberland

    Latest update from Stephen Temperley, our Species Protection Coordinator, overseeing hen harrier monitoring and nest protection efforts in Northumberland this year. Across Northumberland these last couple of days, the clement weather has been very welcome indeed – for the farmers, for the muirburners...
  • Blog Post: Hen harriers on show at Geltsdale

    Ghostbird is an exhibition by artist Louise Ann Wilson , exploring the history and decline of hen harriers in England and particularly, the Forest of Bowland. Originally created as a walking theatre perfomance over the Bowland Fells in 2012, the new exhbition features stunning photographs, as well as...
  • Blog Post: My life with hen harriers at Langholm (guest post)

    When it comes to the big conservation issues like hen harriers, it's all too easy to feel powerless. News stories seem unrelentingly negative and it can be hard to see how any one of us can make a difference. But here's the thing, you are not alone. Through Skydancer I've met all kinds of...
  • Blog Post: Hen harriers & heartbreak - the story of a failed nest

    With the appalling news published today that hen harriers have failed to breed successfully in England for the first time since the 1960's, Stephen Temperley, North Tynedale Species Protection Officer, reveals the heartbreak of looking after one of only two known failed nesting attempts this year...
  • Blog Post: What needs to be done?

    As I wrote last week, harriers are on the brink of extinction in England. The RSPB is appealing to the government to step up and do more for harriers. The revised England Biodiversity Strategy includes a commitment by Government to avoid any human induced extinctions of known threatened species by...
  • Blog Post: The Ghost of a Ringtail by Gavin Jones

    In response to my guest post on Martin Harper's blog on Monday, Gavin Jones, who lives near the Forest of Bowland, was inspired to write a beautiful yet haunting poem. Thank you Gavin for sharing it with us. You can read it for yourselves by visiting Martin's blog here . © RSPB...
  • Blog Post: Betty's back!

    I can’t believe that it has just turned a year since I started working in Bowland. Sadly, last year was not a good one for harriers in England to put it mildly, and so it is with nervous excitement that I look forward to this my second season on the United Utilities estate. Despite the recent...
  • Blog Post: 74843

    So as promised here is a bit of a run down of what 74843 has been up to over her first year. As you will see, she’s been pretty hard to keep up with recently! As Stephen Murphy, from the Natural England Hen Harrier Recovery Project, will tell you, satellite tagging these birds has provided some...
  • Blog Post: Bird of prey persecution - make your voice heard

    Crimes against birds of prey are widespread across the UK. The results of the 2010 National Hen harrier survey showed that the harrier is on the brink of extinction as a breeding bird in England. Since 2004, the English breeding population has declined by 20% and remains perilously low with just 12...
  • Blog Post: Introducing Martin ...

    Thanks for all your name suggestions, we've decided to go with the inspired suggestion of Martin - Hen harrier en français is Busard Saint-Martin! Martin © Stephen Murphy, Natural England. According to the most recent update, Martin is still enjoying northern France, with fixes...
  • Blog Post: Join us in Bowland ...

    Looking for something exciting and different to do over the next few months? Why not come and help us look out for hen harriers on the United Utilities estate here in Bowland? I know we haven’t had much harrier activity to report so far but there’s still time for all that to change! Join...
  • Blog Post: North Tynedale: from expectation to hope

    Plenty of hen harrier sightings but still no pair just about sums it up, I'm afraid. We are now in the last chance saloon for this season. Thanks to a remarkably dedicated cohort of volunteers, on-site monitoring has been both thorough and discreet. We have had at least one watcher covertly monitoring...
  • Blog Post: A half dozen healthy harriers

    This week's blog is brought to you by Dan Trotman, who runs the Skydancer roost watch event at RSPB Dee Estuary reserves. Hen harriers can travel great distances, often to coastal areas, in the winter to escape the harsh upland weather. Many Scottish birds will come south to England, spending time...
  • Blog Post: Speaking out for Skydancers

    So what bird is your job about again? Is it the hen hawk? The majority of people, whether they have an active interest in birds or not, have heard of buzzards and kestrels. They might get them confused when asked to identify them, but they are aware that they exist. Many also know about peregrines...
  • Blog Post: It's official ...

    Spring is here! I'm so excited, the hills are coming alive again with our breeding birds beginning to return to the fells. I should start the 2012 breeding season blogs by introducing our new seasonal warden here in Bowland. Mick Demain has joined the RSPB team and brings with him extensive knowledge...
  • Blog Post: What a difference a day makes

    Sitting out on the fells in Bowland these last few weeks has been a strange experience. By now, in all the years that staff and volunteers monitoring hen harriers on the United Utilities estate can remember, we would have been able to head up onto the fell knowing we would be able to watch harriers....
  • Blog Post: Happy new year

    So what fortunes will this new year bring for the English Hen harriers? The first harriers will be starting to return to the uplands to establish territories in less than 8 weeks now. I am keeping everything crossed that they have a good year here in the Forest of Bowland, the stronghold for breeding...
  • Blog Post: Where is she now?

    So 74843 continued her journey back down south, stopping off in the Cairngorms for about 5 days where she ranged both east and west of the A9 around Dalwhinnie. I have to say she’s been picking some cracking spots to hang out, it’s really stunning in that area if you ever get the opportunity...
  • Blog Post: North Tynedale: Glad to be Back

    Stephen Temperley returns to Skydancer this month, reprising his role coordinating the North Tynedale hen harrier nest protection project. As the breeding season gets underway in earnest, he has some positive early news... Greetings from the RSPB Species Protection Coordinator for Northumberland!...
  • Blog Post: Update on Martin

    Just to keep you informed of the latest info on Martin, a little worryingly, as of Monday, no transmission has been received from him for 7 days. Whilst this length of gap between transmission isn’t unheard of, it is a little unusual. Weather could be a factor in this, and I for one am very...