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In this email:
Rarity finders Baillon's Crake in Cornwall
Night Parrot rediscovered in Western Australia
Research Breeding swallows switch hemispheres
Birdwatch magazine New project brings hope to Scottish waders
Huge boost for Golden Eagles in southern Scotland
BirdLife Argentina approves measures to save seabirds
Birdwatch magazine What defines a species?
Two mutilated Canada Geese found in Cardiff woodland
Featured tour Belarus — spring in the wilderness
Raptors of Mexico and Central America by William S Clark and N John Schmitt
Bird of the Week Iberian Chiffchaff
Photo of the Week 22–28 March
Review of the Week 22–28 March
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 Baillon's Crake in CornwallRarity finders Baillon's Crake in Cornwall
One of the only birds Alice Davey saw during a morning at a west Cornwall beach proved to be a mega-rare crake.
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Night Parrot rediscovered in Western AustraliaNight Parrot rediscovered in Western Australia
Four Australian birders have documented the first verified sighting of Night Parrot in Western Australia in over 100 years.
Link more
 Breeding swallows switch hemispheresResearch Breeding swallows switch hemispheres
A new study has found that North American Barn Swallows are now proliferating in Argentina, having altered their entire annual cycle.
Link more
Birdwatch magazine New project brings hope to Scottish waders New project brings hope to Scottish waders
Led by RSPB Scotland, the Peesie Project aims to conserve and enhance a network of important wetland areas and adjacent farmland to provide homes for breeding waders.
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Huge boost for Golden Eagles in southern ScotlandHuge boost for Golden Eagles in southern Scotland
One of Scotland's most iconic species, Golden Eagle, has the chance to become a more widespread sight across the south of Scotland following a successful Heritage Lottery application bid.
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BirdLife Argentina approves measures to save seabirds Argentina approves measures to save seabirds
The use of measures to prevent seabird by-catch deaths has just been approved by the Argentinian government, a decision that will save the lives of many thousands of seabirds.
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 What defines a species?Birdwatch magazine What defines a species?
Defined by the amount by which the DNA of internal cell parts is co-adapted, the new species concept is helping to explain why mitochondrial and nuclear genetics are sometimes at odds.
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Two mutilated Canada Geese found in Cardiff woodlandTwo mutilated Canada Geese found in Cardiff woodland
The RSPCA is seeking information following the discovery of a pair of disembowelled Canada Geese in the Fairwater area of Cardiff.
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Featured tour Belarus — spring in the wilderness
 Belarus — spring in the wildernessAn unspoilt mosaic of ancient forests, meandering rivers and the most extensive marshes and fens in Europe, Belarus offers a truly unique birding experience. Azure Tit is a sought-after speciality, while wet meadows hold Corncrake and Spotted Crake, breeding Terek and Marsh Sandpipers, lekking Great Snipe and the world's largest Aquatic Warbler population. In the boreal forests are Great Grey and Pygmy Owls, Greater Spotted Eagle, Hazel Grouse and numerous woodpeckers, including the rare White-backed. Join us on this special holiday.
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Raptors of Mexico and Central America by William S Clark and N John Schmitt by William S Clark and N John Schmitt
Special offer price: £29.95 (SRP: £32.95)

Published 4 April 2017

Raptors are among the most challenging birds to identify in the field because of their bewildering variability of plumage, flight silhouettes and behaviour. This new title is the first illustrated guide to Mexico and Central America's 69 species of raptors, including vagrants. It features 32 stunning colour plates and 213 colour photos, and a distribution map for each regularly occurring species. Detailed species accounts describe key identification features, age-related plumages, status and distribution, subspecies, moult, habitats, behaviours, potential confusion species, and more. This essential field guide to this difficult bird group will be the ideal travel companion for anyone visiting the region.
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Bird of the Week Iberian Chiffchaff
 Iberian ChiffchaffThey may now be an expected sight (or, more accurately, sound) each spring, but territorial Iberian Chiffchaffs nevertheless always draw a crowd. While some individuals attract considerable debate as opinions divide over their identification, others are more straightforward. The latter certainly applies to the fine male singing at Yate, Gloucestershire, this week, which both looks and sounds like a nailed-on 'Ibe Chiff'.

The identification of Iberian Chiffchaff, Common Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler is discussed by Andy Stoddart in the April issue of Birdwatch magazine.Link more
Photo of the Week 22–28 March 22–28 March
Kev Joynes' shot of a Waxwing having a "bad hair day" raised a smile and wins him our Photo of the Week accolade.
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Review of the Week 22–28 March

After snow caused disruption in some northern areas in the first few days of the review period, mild and settled conditions returned in the second half of the week — which in turn helped to reignite spring migration after a 10-day lull.

Annual 'firsts' included a Sedge Warbler singing at Blakeney Freshmarsh, Norfolk, on a very chilly day on 22nd (this followed by birds in East Sussex on 25th and Somerset on 27th), a Hobby on St Martin's, Scilly, on 22nd (with others latterly seen in Kent, Dorset and Cornwall), Tree Pipit at Cley, Norfolk, on 22nd and Common Tern at Swillington, West Yorks, on 28th but, most surprisingly, a (presumed) Common Swift over London's Alexandra Park on 27th. A few more Yellow Wagtails also sneaked through, while Osprey and Ring Ouzel numbers began to rise. Garganey were noted at well over 50 sites and a good arrival of Little Ringed Plovers took place from the weekend onwards. Willow Warblers and the three commoner hirundines are all rapidly increasing in the southern half of the country — by this time next week they should be much more widespread further north, if conditions remain favourable.

Little Ringed Plover
Little Ringed Plover, undisclosed site, Worcestershire (Photo: Chris Cook)

Scarcer migrants remain just that, though, and our predicted showing of a White-spotted Bluethroat failed to materialize — despite the easterlies. Alpine Swifts were over Tacumshin, Co Wexford, on 25th and St Mary's, Scilly, on 26th, though both were brief. A third was on Guernsey on 27th. A Hoopoe was near Abercych, Pembrokeshire, on 27th, but the highlight of the week was an early Iberian Chiffchaff singing at Yate on 25th — this first for Gloucestershire lingered until 26th only.

Iberian Chiffchaff
Iberian Chiffchaff, Yate, Gloucestershire (Photo: Chris Teague)

Link Read the full illustrated review online (free to access)

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