4,000th bird sighting reported for 2017!

posted in: Birdwatching | 2

A Little Egret spotted in the south of the island this week by local birdwatcher Richard Norris is the 4,000th ‘wild bird’ sighting reported by a member of the public using Manx BirdLife’s website this year.

Little Egret (Neil G Morris)
Little Egret (Neil G Morris)

Little Egrets are smaller, all white versions of the Isle of Man’s more familiar resident Grey Heron. The exotic-looking egrets have become increasingly frequent migrant and winter visitors to the Isle of Man in recent years as their range has rapidly expanded across the British Isles from the species’ historic Mediterranean and Eastern European strongholds.

In addition to public reports using its online form, Manx BirdLife receives regular reports of bird sightings from its army of garden birdwatchers as well as from professional scientists. The data collected provides a valuable picture of the changing fortunes of the island’s wild bird populations.

Manx BirdLife is extremely grateful to all those who have contributed their sightings. For more about how you can participate in sending your bird sightings to Manx BirdLife, take a look at our Garden Birdwatch Scheme and online submissions page.


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2 Responses

  1. Derek Pitman

    I watched a Little Egret ‘tidepooling’ at Gansey Point, near Port St Mary three days ago (31/7/2017). A bird watching friend of mine confirmed my identification and said that there was a group of them in the Poill Vaish area across the Carrick Bay. I have never seen this bird before and was thrilled to see and photograph it.

    • Manx BirdLife

      Thanks for reporting this Derek. It’s a very recent phenomenon that Little Egrets have started to winter in the Isle of Man. Doubtless the recent successful colonisation of parts of the UK is the source of our birds. Given that colonisation continues apace, it’s surely only a matter of time before Egrets breed on the island. Who’d have thought would ever happen with this Mediterranean species! But it’s a delightful addition to the Manx bird list, having arrived here totally naturally and is not a threat to our established native species. So we welcome many more and look forward to more sightings.

      BTW have you checked out the sightings report form on this website at http://manxbirdlife.im/sightings/submit-your-sightings/ ?

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