The House Martin's need you!!!!!


I've already blogged about the upcoming BTO Survey on the House Martins, spring is on its way but there's still time to register on the BTO page.  These birds have declined by 18% in 10 years
House Martin's are beautiful birds which migrate to south Sahara each year and come and breed in Britain and Europe. The reason that the BTO are starting this survey is that the House Martin numbers are declining, and we do not know the reason why, maybe it's illegal shooting on the migration routes, or is climate change having a impact, so many questions that need answering to why these birds are declining.

Relative Abunance Change from 1988-2011
(Copyright BTO Atlas 2011)

Breeding Abundance 2008-11
(Copyright BTO Atlas 2011) 

From these two images, courtesy of the BTO, we can see that in the top image that House Martin numbers have decreased in England and parts of Wales, but in Scotland and Ireland the population of House Martins have increased, where the density of people is fewer even though they mainly build there mud nests under eaves of houses. The second image shows that on the Eastern side of Ireland and Northern Ireland they are doing extremely well, in the highlands of Scotland there isn't many birds but in Devon and Dorset the numbers are very high, so the abundance is scattered with no real pattern, so this is a reason why the BTO need answers to why these birds are declining.

House Martin (Dawn Balmer)

House Martin in nest (Dawn Balmer)

How you can help the House Martin

As in the blog about this survey there are many ways to help the House Martin. One way is to put up some specialised nest boxes, this is a great way of encouraging these birds to your house, also to help the BTO know more about them join the BTO and donate to the survey!!!!!

So go out there buy a box, and start the survey!!!!