Threatened swans boosted by bumper breeding season

14:31 01 January 2013

Bewick

Bewick's swans

Archant

THREATENED Bewick’s swans are returning to WWT Welney from their Russian breeding grounds with the most young that ornithologists have seen in more than a decade.

Following a bumper breeding season, surveys of the swans’ UK wintering sites have found 17.6 per cent young among the flocks - compared to an average of about 10 per cent over the last 10 years.

Julia Newth, a Wildlife Health Research Officer at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, said: “We still need to find out what is driving down Bewick’s swan numbers and reverse this worrying decline, but this year’s good breeding season is very welcome news.

“This is their best breeding season since 2001 and the higher number of cygnets this year will hopefully boost their numbers.

“At the same time, WWT is tackling the things we know affect the swans: illegal shooting, flying collisions with pylons and wires and poisoning from spent lead gunshot.”

The factors behind this year’s breeding success are not fully understood, due to the remoteness of the swans’ breeding grounds in Arctic Russia. It is likely that weather, particularly a cold snap at the start of the breeding season, is significant and conservationists are concerned that climate change is partly behind the recent decline.

WWT provides safe roosting for Bewick’s swans at WWT Welney on the Ouse Washes, WWT Slimbridge and WWT Arundel in Sussex.

To donate to WWT’s swan appeal visit www.wwt.org.uk/swans

0 comments

More news stories

Yesterday, 17:37
A number of classic cars and a family home were completely destroyed by a fast spreading fire.

, 
Thorney, A47, 
09/02/2016
Picture by Terry Harris.

A house and vintage cars – themselves worth an estimated £500,000- were destroyed in last night’s blaze at Thorney.

Yesterday, 13:54
Air Cadets from were joined by other squadrons from the Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire Wing to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Air Cadet Organisation.  An unprecedented number of 750 cadets and 75 uniformed staff paraded through the City of Ely.

Air cadets from across Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire got together in Ely to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the organisation.

Yesterday, 09:36
The Geoff Hobbs lorry that was recovered from a field on the A142, New Road junction, Chatteris

A driver had a lucky escape on Monday when his lorry careered across the carriageway, narrowly missed a lamp post, took down some road signs and ended up on its side.

Yesterday, 18:58
Cheque presentation to Magpas

Adam Brooker, 23, was involved in a serious road traffic collision near Peterborough in October 2014, when his car collided with a lorry, leaving him trapped inside the vehicle and suffering from serious life-threatening injuries.

Most read stories

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Cambs Times e-edition E-edition