Ireland holds a low diversity of breeding raptors as a result of its location on the western edge of Europe but also due to historical persecution leading to the loss of at least seven species. Recolonisation by Buzzards Buteo buteo and the recent reintroduction of three species, Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos, White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla and Red Kite Milvus milvus, has helped redress such losses. Monitoring for raptors is carried out by the statutory agencies, NGOs and two university research groups. Decadal and semi-decadal surveys are undertaken nationally in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland for Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus and Hen Harriers Circus cyaneus, respectively. Long term monitoring projects have been established for some key species such as Barn Owl Tyto alba. However, some species receive little monitoring effort (e.g. Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus, Merlin F. columbarius). A dedicated Raptor Monitoring Scheme to determine long-term population trends across a range of species is lacking and remains an urgent priority. Development of an Action Plan for raptors and/or single key species would further help identify priorities and raise awareness of the need of monitoring for raptors.
An Overview of Monitoring for Raptors in Ireland
Title: An Overview of Monitoring for Raptors in Ireland
December 01, 2012
Mee, A. (2012). An Overview of Monitoring for Raptors in Ireland. Acrocephalus, 33, 239-245.