Evening talks programme
Methodist Church Halls, 20 Marketgait, Dundee (click here for a map of the venue and surrounding area)
The following Thursdays at 7.30pm:
05 Feb 2015 “Breeding waders of the Uist machair: Land use and predators, past, present and future”, with John Calladine, Senior Research Ecologist, BTO Scotland
The west coast habitats of the Uists hold concentrations of breeding waders that are exceptional in Scottish, British and wider European contexts. Observed declines in wader populations on South Uist and Benbecula since the 1980s were argued to be largely due to predation of clutches by introduced hedgehogs. This argument, supported by evidence from the effects of their experimental removal, led to an ongoing programme of hedgehog removal. Concern remained however that breeding populations of some waders did not show the signs of recovery that might be expected in response to hedgehog control. This talk will present some of the findings of recent work investigating associations of changes in breeding wader densities with land uses and new work on the full suite of predators affecting machair waders. Future implications for conservation will be discussed.
John Calladine has had a lifelong interest birds and natural history and has worked in ecological research and conservation for over 30 years. John is currently a Senior Research Ecologist with BTO Scotland, based at Stirling University, with particular interests in the impacts of land uses on bird populations and distribution.
05 Mar 2015 Ian Thomson – Shotguns & Short-toed Eagles: Birding on the island of Malta
Malta is a well-known, very popular holiday destination, with a fascinating cultural and historical background. However, it is also notorious for the killings of protected birds, particularly during migration periods. Can it be a holiday destination for birders in a similar way to other Mediterranean islands? This talk discusses the island’s history, politics, birdlife and the problem of illegal hunting as well as taking a look to the future….
Originally from Aberdeen, Ian has an honours degree in Ecology from Edinburgh University. Following this he worked on a variety of contracts, including with the then Nature Conservancy Council for Scotland and RSPB among others, before becoming warden at Aberlady Bay in East Lothian, a position he enjoyed for almost 15 years. Ian joined the RSPB Scotland Investigations team in 2006, and has been head of that unit for three years. He is a fanatical birder and a keen wildlife photographer. Ian has been a member of the SOC since the late 1970’s, including a spell as chair of the Lothian Branch and is the current SOC Vice President.
02 Apr 2015 AGM & Members’ Night
Please contact the leader if transport is required. All meets are joint with ADBC; members are urged to carshare wherever possible.
Sun 11 Jan Annual Angus coast wader watch. Meet at 9.00am at bottom of South Balmossie St. near railway bridge or 10.00am at Easthaven (leader tba)
Sun 15 Feb Scone Palace & Vane Farm. Meet at Crichton St., Dundee at 9.00am or Quarry Mill at 10.00am (Eric McCabe 01738 622269)
Wed 18 Mar Coastal walk to Gaylet Pot with lunch at But ‘n’ Ben. Meet at Auchmithie at 10.00am (numbers required for table booking, contact Mickey Mellon)
Brian Brocklehurst 01382 778348 or leader (particularly if transport is required). All meets are joint with ADBC.
About the branch
Chair and representative of the branch on SOC Council:
Angus and Dundee recorder and Technical Expert:
Perth and Kinross recorder:
Birdwatching in Tayside
Bird recording in this area
Kinross Bird Atlas
During the fieldwork for BirdAtlas 2007-11, data for the old county of Kinross has been gathered from all of its 71 tetrads. The fieldwork is almost finished but mopping up in the current 2012 breeding season will take place. Any observer birding in the region is invited to submit as many breeding season records as possible to the BirdTrack or BirdAtlas websites, ideally adding breeding status codes for every record, which can be found on the websites. All records should be at tetrad level. If anyone is unsure where the northern boundary of the old county lies (not marked on current maps), the most northerly tetrads covered are NO00D, NO00I, NO00N, NO00U, NO00Z, NO10E, NO10J & NO10P. The remainder of the boundary is the current Perth & Kinross boundary. Records from the 10km square NO00 will be particularly valuable. Any queries should be directed to Norman Elkins.
BTO Winter Thrush survey
Tayside branch members are also much involved with the Winter Thrush 2 year survey being run by the BTO – running from September 2012 to April 2013 and repeated again from September 2013 to April 2014. Visit the BTO website for more information http://www.bto.org/volunteer-surveys/winter-thrushes