Common Shelduck Tadorna tadorna is one of our most striking wild waterfowl and has fared well this winter. The BTO British Trust for Ornithology has published its latest WeBS - The Wetland Bird Survey results, highlighting the importance of protected areas to the UK's waterbirds.
The Waterbirds in the UK 2018/19 report sets out evidence that more than a third of the waterbird species that use our most important and protected wetlands have declined by 25% or more. Some of these declines are because of large-scale changes in global waterbird distributions due to climate change; others may be due to local problems at individual sites.
Declining species, such as Common Pochard Aythya ferina and Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula, fared slightly better in 2018–19, although remain down by more than 35% in terms of the 25-year trend. The introduced Mandarin Duck Aix galericulata was again noted at record levels, while Gadwall Anas strepera was at its second-highest level:
Waterbirds in the UK 2018/19 - The annual report of the Wetland Bird Survey – here.