Grey wagtail

The grey wagtail (Motacilla cinerea) is a member of the wagtail family, Motacillidae, measuring around 18–19 cm overall length. The species looks somewhat similar to the yellow wagtail but has the yellow on its underside restricted to the throat and vent. Breeding males have a black throat. The species is widely distributed, with several populations breeding in Europe and Asia and migrating to tropical regions in Asia and Africa. The species is always associated with running water when breeding, although they may use man-made structures near streams for the nest. Outside the breeding season, they may also be seen around lakes, coasts and other watery habitats. Like other wagtails, they frequently wag their tail and fly low with undulations and they have a sharp call that is often given in flight.


Taxonomy and systematics

The binomial name of the grey wagtail Motacilla cinerea was introduced by Marmaduke Tunstall in his 1771 publication Ornithologia Britannica.[2][3] Motacilla is the Latin name for the pied wagtail; although actually a diminutive of motare, "to move about", from medieval times it led to the misunderstanding of cilla as "tail". The specific cinerea is Latin for "ash-grey" from cinis, "ashes".[4]

The relationships of this species are not well resolved; it belongs to the non-African clade of wagtails, these are confusing in their external morphology, and mtDNA cytochrome b and NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 sequence data are not able to robustly resolve their relationships. While the present species is probably most closely related to citrine wagtails and some blue-headed wagtails, the exact nature of this relationship is unclear.[5]


Grey Wagtail- Breeding Male I IMG 6705
Male M. c. melanope

This slim wagtail has a narrow white supercilium and a broken eye ring. The upperparts are grey and the yellow vent contrasting with whitish underparts makes it distinctive. The breeding male has a black throat that is edged by whitish moustachial stripes. They forage singly or in pairs on meadows or on shallow water marshes. They also use rocks in water and will often perch on trees. They have a clear sharp call note and the song consists of trills.[6]

Distribution and habitat

The bird is widely distributed across the Palearctic region with several well marked populations. The nominate form (includes caspica of Iran, Turkey and the Caucasus) is from western Europe including the British Isles, Scandinavia and Mediterranean region. Race melanope, which is not well separated from the nominate subspecies, is described as the population breeding in eastern Europe and central Asia mainly along the mountain chains of the Urals, Tien Shan and along the Himalayas.[7] They winter in Africa and Asia. Race robusta breeds along the northeastern parts of Asia in Siberia extending to Korea and Japan. These winter in Southeast Asia. Island forms include patriciae of the Azores, schmitzi of Madeira and canariensis of the Canary Islands.

They sometimes occur on the islands to the West of Alaska but have been known to occur further south in California as a vagrant.[8]

Behaviour and ecology

Motacilla cinerea 1 Luc Viatour
Nominate race (Belgium)

The breeding season is April to July and the nest is placed near fast running streams or rivers on an embankment between stones and roots.[6] The male in display, makes short flights up into the air and descends slowly with fluttering flight accompanied by a rapid series of chipping high notes.[9] In Europe the nests are often made in holes in manmade structures. The clutch consists of 3–6 speckled eggs and multiple broods may be raised with declining numbers in the clutch in subsequent broods.[10] The usual clutch size is five in Ireland and the breeding success is about 80% with predation of eggs or chicks being the main cause of breeding failure.[11] The Canary Islands population typically have smaller clutches and the breeding season is not as short and well marked as in populations at higher latitudes.[12] The incubation period is about two weeks with chicks fledging within a fortnight. They live for a maximum of 8 years in the wild.[13][14]

Motacilla cinerea MWNH 1570
Eggs, Collection Museum Wiesbaden

In some parts of the its range the white-throated dipper nests in the same habitats as the grey wagtail and there are some records of interspecific feeding of dipper chicks by adult wagtails.[15]

These birds feed on a variety of aquatic invertebrates including adult flies, mayflies, beetles, crustacea and molluscs.[16] They often forage along roadsides in winter, flushing with a sharp chi-cheep call and flying up further along the road but after some distance turning back to return to the original location.[9]

In winter, they roost in small groups.[17] Wintering birds have been known to return to the same sites, sometimes a small urban garden, each year.[9][18]

Adults often have parasitic ticks, Ixodes ricinus, which can harbour Borrelia and thus can potentially disperse Lyme disease over a wide region.[19] Coccidia such as Isospora sp. are known in this species.[20] The common cuckoo is sometimes a brood parasite of this species,[21] and kestrels may sometimes prey on them.[22]


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Motacilla cinerea". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  2. ^ Schodde, R.; Bock, W.J. (2008). "The valid name for the Grey Wagtail". Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club. 128 (2): 132–133.
  3. ^ Tunstall, Marmaduke (1880) [1771]. Newton, Alfred (ed.). Tunstall's Ornithologia britannica (in Latin). London: J. Akerman. p. 2. A photo-lithographic reproduction of the original publication.
  4. ^ Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London, United Kingdom: Christopher Helm. pp. 107, 261. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
  5. ^ Voelker, Gary (2002). "Systematics and historical biogeography of wagtails: Dispersal versus vicariance revisited". Condor. 104 (4): 725–739. doi:10.1650/0010-5422(2002)104[0725:SAHBOW]2.0.CO;2.
  6. ^ a b Rasmussen PC; Anderton, JC (2005). Birds of South Asia: The Ripley Guide. Volume 2. Smithsonian Institution & Lynx Edicions. p. 317.
  7. ^ Hume, AO (1890). The nests and eggs of Indian Birds. Volume 2. R H Porter, London. p. 207.
  8. ^ "Checklist of Alaska birds" (PDF) (15th ed.). University of Alaska, Fairbanks. 2009. Retrieved 30 October 2009.
  9. ^ a b c Ali, S; Ripley, S D (1998). Handbook of the birds of India and Pakistan. Volume 9 (2nd ed.). pp. 290–292.
  10. ^ Klemp S. (2000). "Effects of parental effort on second brood, moult and survival in the Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea" (PDF). Ardea. 88 (1): 91–98.
  11. ^ Smiddy, P.; O'Halloran, J. (1998). "Breeding biology of the Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea in southwest Ireland". Bird Study. 45 (3): 331–336. doi:10.1080/00063659809461104.
  12. ^ Rodríguez B.; Rodríguez A. (2007). "Breeding biology of Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea canariensis on Tenerife, Canary Islands" (PDF). Acta Ornithol. 42 (2): 195–199. doi:10.3161/068.042.0203.
  13. ^ Robinson, R.A. (2005). "BirdFacts: profiles of birds occurring in Britain & Ireland". BTO Research. Retrieved 28 October 2009.
  14. ^ Jørgensen OH (1976). "Migration and Aspects of Population Dynamics in the Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea". Ornis Scandinavica. 7 (1): 13–20. doi:10.2307/3676170.
  15. ^ Yoerg, SI; O'Halloran, J (1991). "Dipper Nestlings Fed by a Gray Wagtail" (PDF). Auk. 108 (2): 427–429.
  16. ^ Santamarina, Jesus (1989). "The Grey Wagtall (Motacilla cinerea) diet in the Ulla river basin, Galicia. NW Spain" (PDF). Ardeola (in Spanish). 37 (1): 97–101.
  17. ^ Neelakantan, KK (1964). "Roosting of the Grey Wagtail [Motacilla caspica (Gmelin)] in the Thekkady Wild Life Sanctuary". J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 61 (3): 691–692.
  18. ^ Nickell, Walter P (1968). "Return of Northern Migrants to Tropical Winter Quarters and Banded Birds Recovered in the United States". Bird-Banding. 39 (2): 107–116. doi:10.2307/4511469.
  19. ^ Dubska, Lenka; Ivan Literak; Elena Kocianova; Veronika Taragelova; Oldrich Sychra (2009). "Differential Role of Passerine Birds in Distribution of Borrelia Spirochetes, Based on Data from Ticks Collected from Birds during the Postbreeding Migration Period in Central Europe" (PDF). Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 75 (3): 596–602. doi:10.1128/AEM.01674-08. PMC 2632145. PMID 19060160.
  20. ^ Svobodova, M (1994). "Isospora, Caryospora and Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Passeriform Birds from Czech Republic" (PDF). Acta Protozoologica. 33: 101–108.
  21. ^ Adamík P.; Hušek J.; Cepák J. (2009). "Rapid decline of Common Cuckoo Cuculus canorus parasitism in Red-backed Shrikes Lanius collurio" (PDF). Ardea. 97 (1): 17–22. doi:10.5253/078.097.0103.
  22. ^ Costantini, David; Casagrande, Stefania; Di Lieto, Giuseppe; Fanfani, Alberto; Dell'Omo, Giacomo (2005). "Consistent differences in feeding habits between neighbouring breeding kestrels" (PDF). Behaviour. 142 (9–10): 1403–1415. doi:10.1163/156853905774539409. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-07-10.

External links

Barle Valley

Barle Valley is a 1,540 acres (620 ha) Site of Special Scientific Interest within Exmoor National Park, situated in the counties of Devon and Somerset through which the River Barle flows. It was notified in its current form under the Wildlife and Countryside Act in 1988. The site includes the Somerset Wildlife Trust's Mounsey Wood Nature Reserve and the Knaplock and North Barton SSSI which has been notified since 1954.

Black Brook (Chorley)

Black Brook in Lancashire has its source at Great Hill in the West Pennine Moors. The water is acidic due to a high level of peat in the uplands near to Round Loaf, giving the brook its brown colour. The young river was known as Warth Brook in olden Heapey. A feeder stream also known as Black Brook joins near Kittiwake Road - this short and weak water course commences at Eagle Tower. The jointed brook feeds Anglezarke Reservoir, and joins the River Yarrow in lowland Chorley at Yarrow Bridge. The entire course of Black Brook and the River Yarrow fall within Chorley and its villages.

Forsakar Nature Reserve

The Forsakar Nature Reserve (Swedish: Naturreservatet Forsakar [fɔʂaˈkɑːr]) is situated in the north-eastern part of the Skåne province of Sweden, in the Kristianstad municipality near the village of Degeberga. The 2.5 hectare large nature reserve was founded 1928 and mainly encompasses a 750 metres long and 40 metres deep ravine

. The ravine runs from west to east and is likely a product of erosion during some of the ice ages.

The Forsaker Creek (Swedish: Forsakarbäcken) runs through the nature reserve and passes the Forsakar Waterfalls (Swedish: Forsakar Vattenfall), the upper fall having a free fall of 7.4 metres and the lower fall having a free fall of 10.6 metres. The bedrock of the ravine consists of Gneiss. The nature reserve has three minor dams that were erected during the late 19th century and the early 20th century to create hydroelectricity. The dams are nowadays dismantled and inactive.

The vegetation of the Forsaker Nature Reserve is dominated by beech forest. Longside the creek is a more humid forest vegetation including alder, ash, elm and hornbeam.

Characteristic resident birds of the nature reserve are amongst others the white-throated dipper, grey wagtail and the Eurasian wren. Common birds of the beech forest are the wood warbler, hawfinch, tawny owl and the lesser spotted woodpecker. Amongst mammals in the nature reserve the mink and pine marten are common. When it comes to insects some rarily seen species have been reported such as rove beetles, carrion beetles, the Agathomyia wankowiczi fly and the endangered Carabus intricatus beetle.

Gail (river)

Gail (Slovene: Zilja, Italian: Zeglia) is the name of a river in southern Austria, the largest right tributary of the Drava.

Glen of the Downs

The Glen of the Downs (Irish: Gleann dá Ghrua, meaning "The Valley of the Two Brows") is a 2 km long wooded glacial valley with steep sides rising to almost 250m on the east coast of Ireland. It contains a designated Nature Reserve comprising 59 ha, as well as a candidate Special Area of Conservation (cSAC).

Highwood, Wokingham

Highwood is a local nature reserve between Woodley and Earley. The nature reserve is owned and managed by Wokingham Borough Council.


Kikugawa (菊川市, Kikugawa-shi) is a city located in the western portion of Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan. The city is known for production of green tea. The city's slogan is "Green for the Next Generation".

As of March 2018, the city has an estimated population of 46,955 and a population density of 499 persons per km2. The total area is 94.19 km2.

List of birds of Islamabad

This is a list of birds found in Islamabad, Pakistan. Seventy-two species of birds have been found in this area. The best places to watch are Margalla Hills and Rawal Lake.

Little grebe, Tachybaptus ruficollis

Little cormorant, Microcarbo niger

Great cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo

Black-crowned night heron, Nycticorax nycticorax

Indian pond heron (Paddybird), Ardeola grayii

Cattle egret, Bubulcus ibis

Little egret, Egretta garzetta

Intermediate egret, Egretta intermedia

Grey heron, Ardea cinerea

Purple heron, Ardea purpurea

Common teal, Anas crecca

Black kite, Milvus migrans

Shikra, Accipiter badius

Long-legged buzzard, Buteo rufinus

Eurasian kestrel, Falco tinnunculus

Grey francolin, Francolinus pondicerianus

Common quail, Coturnix coturnix

Brown waterhen, Amaurornis akool

White-breasted waterhen, Amaurornis phoenicurus

Moorhen, Gallinula chloropus

Eurasian coot, Fulica atra

Red-wattled lapwing, Hoplopterus indicus

Common sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos

Black-headed gull, Larus ridibundus

Feral pigeon, Columba livia

Wood pigeon, Columba palumbus

Collared dove, Streptopelia decaocto

Palm dove, Spilopelia senegalensis

Spotted dove, Spilopelia chinensis

Rose-ringed parakeet, Psittacula krameri

Common koel, Eudynamys scolopacea

Greater coucal, Centropus sinensis

House swift, Apus affinis

White-throated kingfisher, Halcyon smyrnensis

Pied kingfisher, Ceryle rudis

Hoopoe, Upupa epops

Lesser golden-backed woodpecker, Dinopium benghalense

Brown-fronted woodpecker, Dendrocopos auriceps

Crested lark, Galerida cristata

Small skylark, Alauda gulgula

Brown-throated sand martin, Riparia paludicola

Pale sand martin, Riparia diluta

Barn swallow, Hirundo rustica

Red-rumped swallow, Hirundo daurica

Paddyfield pipit, Anthus rufulus

Grey wagtail, Motacilla cinerea

White wagtail, Motacilla alba

Large pied wagtail, Motacilla maderaspatensis

Himalayan bulbul, Pycnonotus leucogenys

Red-vented bulbul, Pycnonotus cafer

Dark-grey bushchat, Saxicola ferrea

Blue rock thrush, Monticola solitarius

Blue whistling thrush, Myophonus caeruleus

Fan-tailed warbler, Cisticola juncidis

Tawny prinia, Prinia inornata

Yellow-bellied prinia, Prinia flaviventris

Hume's leaf warbler, Phylloscopus humei

White-throated fantail, Rhipidura albicollis

Black-chinned babbler, Stachyris pyrrhops

Common babbler, Turdoides caudatus

Jungle babbler, Turdoides striatus

Great tit, Parus major

Bar-tailed treecreeper, Certhia himalayana

Oriental white-eye, Zosterops palpebrosus

Rufous-backed shrike, Lanius schach

Black drongo, Dicrurus macrocercus

House crow, Corvus splendens

Brahminy starling, Sturnus pagodarum

Common myna, Acridotheres tristis

Bank myna, Acridotheres ginginianus

House sparrow, Passer domesticus

Alexandrine parakeet, Psittacula eupatria

Green bee-eater, Merops orientalis

Rufous treepie, Dendrocitta vagabunda

Indian robin, Saxicoloides fulicatus

List of local nature reserves in Somerset

The ceremonial county of Somerset consists of a non-metropolitan county, administered by Somerset County Council, which is divided into five districts, and two unitary authorities. The districts of Somerset are West Somerset, South Somerset, Taunton Deane, Mendip and Sedgemoor. The two administratively independent unitary authorities, which were established on 1 April 1996 following the breakup of the County of Avon, are North Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset. These unitary authorities include areas that were once part of Somerset before the creation of Avon in 1974.Local nature reserves (LNRs) are designated by local authorities under the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949. The local authority must have a legal control over the site, by owning or leasing it or having an agreement with the owner. LNRs are sites which have a special local interest either biologically or geologically, and local authorities have a duty to care for them. They can apply local bye-laws to manage and protect LNRs.There are 40 local nature reserves in Somerset recognised by Natural England. The smallest is Wellington Basins, which covers 0.53 hectares (1.3 acres) of small ponds and surrounding grassland and woodland. This provides a habitat for grey wagtail, dipper and reed bunting. The largest, covering 129.56 hectares (320.1 acres), is Weston Woods on Worlebury Hill, which includes Worlebury Camp Iron Age hill fort. The woodland provides a habitat for mammals including deer, badgers, foxes and bats. Birds include woodpeckers, buzzards and treecreepers. Several of the sites are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The list includes sites owned or managed by both Avon Wildlife Trust and Somerset Wildlife Trust.


MigrantWatch is a citizen science non-governmental organisation project in India for collection of information about bird migration. The organisation was conceived in July 2007 and is coordinated by the Science Programme of the National Centre for Biological Sciences, in association with Indian Birds journal.The goal of the MigrantWatch programme is to collect information on the arrival, presence and departure of migrant birds that spend the winter in India and to assess any changes that occur in the timing of migration. The MigrantWatch program provides a website where registered members can upload observations of migratory bird species,and access all the sighting records and maps with data plotted.

In the first year, the program targeted nine species of migratory birds:

Northern shoveller Anas clypeata

Marsh harrier, Circus aeruginosus

Wood sandpiper Tringa glareola

Common (or barn) swallow Hirundo rustica

Grey wagtail Motacilla cinerea

Brown shrike Lanius cristatus

Black redstart Phoenicurus ochruros

Greenish warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides

Rosy starling Sturnus roseusSubsequently, the list was increased to 30 migratory species.

Minowa, Nagano

Minowa (箕輪町, Minowa-machi) is a town located in Nagano Prefecture, Japan. As of 1 April 2019, the town had an estimated population of 25,051 in 9737 households , and a population density of 290 persons per km². The total area of the town is 85.91 square kilometres (33.17 sq mi).


The wagtails, longclaws and pipits are a family, Motacillidae, of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. There are around 65 species in 6 genera. The longclaws are entirely restricted to the Afrotropics, and the wagtails are predominantly found in Europe, Africa and Asia, with two species migrating and breeding in Alaska. The pipits have the most cosmopolitan distribution, being found across mostly in the Old World but occurring also in the Americas and oceanic islands such as New Zealand and the Falklands. Two African species, the yellow-breasted pipit and Sharpe's longclaw, are sometimes placed in a separate seventh genus, Hemimacronyx, which is closely related to the longclaws.Most motacillids are ground-feeding insectivores of slightly open country. They occupy almost all available habitats, from the shore to high mountains. Wagtails prefer wetter habitats to the pipits. A few species use forests, including the forest wagtail, and other species use forested mountain streams, such as the grey wagtail or the mountain wagtail.

Motacillids take a wide range of invertebrate prey, especially insects are the most commonly taken, but also including spiders, worms, and small aquatic molluscs and arthropods. All species seem to be fairly catholic in their diet, and the most commonly taken prey for any particular species or population usually reflects local availability.

With the exception of the forest wagtail, they nest on the ground, laying up to six speckled eggs.

Nam Phong National Park

Nam Phong National Park (Thai: อุทยานแห่งชาติน้ำพอง) is a national park in Thailand's Khon Kaen and Chaiyaphum provinces. This mountainous park, in two separate sections, encompasses part of the Ubol Ratana Dam reservoir and also features rock formations and cliff-top viewpoints. The park is named for the Nam Phong River, impounded by the dam.


Rakeeranbeg (, [ɹəˌciəɹənˈbeːɟ]), or Rathkeeranbeg (, [ɹaθˌciəɹənˈbeːɟ]; Irish: Ráth Caorthainn Beag, meaning "little fort of the rowan") is a townland in the Dromore area in County Tyrone in Northern Ireland. It is situated in the barony of Omagh East and the civil parish of Dromore and covers an area of 180 acres.

Rotten Calder

The Rotten Calder is a river to the east of East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, Scotland and along with the Rotten Burn it forms the southern and western boundaries of Blantyre.

It begins as the Calder Water at its source at Ardochrig, and is joined by the Cleughearn, Lea and Drumloch Burns around Langlands Moss which drain from the Eldrig Hills. This river has also been titled the 'West' or 'South Calder Water', although the latter title is shared by another river in Motherwell. Upon being joined by the Rotten Burn to the south-east of East Kilbride, the river becomes the Rotten Calder Water. 'Water' is a term used in Scotland to denote a small river.

The Rotten Calder runs through a romantic scenic gorge titled Calderglen, where it flows through East Kilbride Parish. This area of the gorge is under the jurisdiction of Calderglen Country Park, run by South Lanarkshire Council. Over 160 nature trails border the river on both banks, in addition to the forest which occupies the slopes, and ferns, mosses and liverworts on the rocky precipices. Otter, roe deer and European green woodpecker can be seen in the southern reaches of the park. Buzzards can be seen hunting over open areas by the river and the grey heron, grey wagtail and dipper are common sights too. The river flows by the site of the former Calderwood Castle (demolished 1947-1951).

The gorge of the Rotten Calder Water was celebrated in books and poems for its romantic grandeur and lush ivy-tied crags. Many traces of 18th- and 19th-century landscape additions can be traced in the park, as well as old mines, quarries, and religious sites. After passing under the General's Bridge at Stoneymeadow, the Water flows by Crossbasket Castle (House) in an easterly direction, and on through the former estates of Greenhall and Milheugh where the valley is seen to give way to wide flood plains.

After Milheugh the river again regains its steep gorge and flows through scenery before flowing into the River Clyde near Bothwell Castle. There are many waterfalls on the river, these are Millwell Linn, Flatt Linn (Crutherland Linn), Torrance Linn (Fairy Linn or Walk Fort Linn), Black Linn, Trough Linn, Calderwood Linn (Castle Falls), Crossbasket Linn, Horseshoe Falls, Old Horseshoe Linn, Small Falls, and Milheugh Falls.

East Kilbride Angling Club have the fishing rights and stock the river with brown trout each year. Permits are available from Lightbody Quality Butchers of Murray Square, East Kilbride.

The river flows via the north side of Blantyre and forms the eastern boundary of the Newton district of Cambuslang before joining the River Clyde opposite Daldowie.

The valley of the Rotten Calder includes hermitages, islets, caves, crannies, ancient markings, fountains, fairy wells, numerous waterfalls, over 200 nature trails, summerhouses, ruined castles, and steep cliffs.

Sapperton Valley

Sapperton Valley (grid reference SO935035) is a 3.7-hectare (9.1-acre) nature reserve near Chalford in the Stroud district of Gloucestershire, England. The site is managed by the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust under leasing arrangements with the Bathurst Estate, in place since 1964.

The Cut, Berkshire

The Cut is a river in England that rises in North Ascot, Berkshire. It flows for around 14 miles (23 km), through the rural Northern Parishes of Winkfield, Warfield and Binfield in Bracknell Forest on its way down to Bray, where it meets the River Thames just above Queens Eyot Island on the reach below Bray Lock, having been joined by the Maidenhead Waterways.

The Cut is so named because it was diverted eastwards artificially in the early nineteenth century from its original course westwards to the River Loddon via Stanlake Park south of Twyford to alleviate flood risk.

A southern tributary known locally as the Bull Brook rises in Whitmoor Bog but its course was routed through an underground pipe when the housing estate named Bullbrook was built in the 1960s. The stream emerges in what is now the Whitegrove housing area and flows north being dammed to create the lake in the grounds of Warfield House. The confluence with the North Ascot watercourse is just southwest of Warfield Church near Halo Farm. The section from Bott Bridge (by the former Three Legged Cross PH, now a curry house) down to Jocks Lane is being converted into a new leisure area called the Cut Countryside Corridor alongside new housing and other facilities on the NW edge of Bracknell. Further downstream the river has again been dammed to create a lake in the grounds of Binfield Manor which can be viewed from the hump-back bridge carrying the Forest Road.

The river has had a chequered history with regard to its water quality and suffered from pollution, particularly in the 1960s, probably due to the rapid expansion of nearby Bracknell and inadequate sewage treatment by the works at Whitmoor Bog and Ryemead Lane, Winkfield. However, in recent decades things have improved and the river now contains a large population of small chub, along with some roach and gudgeon though it seems to have limited appeal to anglers. Other fish present are three-spined sticklebacks and stone loach, and the riparian fauna includes kingfisher, grey heron (especially around Warfield House lake), grey wagtail and mink.

Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary

Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary is a 30-hectare (74-acre) protected area located in the Kancheepuram District and Madurantakam taluk of the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The sanctuary is about 75 kilometres (47 mi) from Chennai on National Highway 45 (NH45). Easily reachable from Madurantakam and Chengalpattu. More than 40,000 birds (including 26 rare species), from various parts of the world visit the sanctuary during the migratory season every year.Vedanthangal is home to migratory birds such as pintail, garganey, grey wagtail, blue-winged teal, common sandpiper and the like.Vedanthangal is the oldest water bird sanctuary in the country. Vedanthangal in Tamil language means 'hamlet of the hunter'. This area was a favourite hunting spot of the local landlords in the early 18th century. The region attracted a variety of birds because it was dotted with small lakes that acted as feeding grounds for the birds. Realising its ornithological importance, the British government undertook steps to develop Vedanthangal into a bird sanctuary as early as 1798. This was established in 1858 by the order of the Collector of Chengalpattu.

The best time to visit this sanctuary is from November to March. During this time, birds are seen busy building and maintaining their nests.

Villagers near this sanctuary are very concerned about the sanctuary and its winged residents, and they have taken many serious steps to avoid disturbance to the flow of birds.

Wraysbury and Hythe End Gravel Pits

Wraysbury and Hythe End Gravel Pits is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) based in Wraysbury,Berkshire. The site is important for the number of bird species it features.


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