BASKET ( 0 )

Wetland Bird Surveys begin!

The Wild Ouseburn project aims to record as much wildlife in the Lower Ouseburn Valley as possible, and there are many ways to get involved! From submitting records through our iNaturalist project, completing paper-based recording forms, emailing your sightings or even adding them to our sightings board in the Bottleworks. Each and every record makes a huge difference in helping to understand the ecology of the valley, allowing us to monitor, protect and enhance it into the future.

Alongside the above, the project will also be completing a number of ‘standardised surveys’, which will follow existing methodologies to record a variety of species across the Wild Ouseburn area. By following existing methodologies, we can create robust data sets which can help shape Ouseburn in the future, whilst also contributing to national studies on wildlife. We’ll be surveying everything from birds and moths to pond life, Hedgehogs and Bats – keep an eye out for ongoing opportunities to get involved.

Over the past couple of weeks we’ve started the first of these surveys with the Wetland Bird Survey. This survey is designed to record the wetland bird species using the Ouseburn and the River Tyne. Following British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) guidelines we’ve established two transects across the project, one following the Ouseburn from where it joins the Tyne to the culvert at Ouseburn Farm, and a second from Spiller’s Wharf to the Millennium Bridge.

Following set routes along these blue corridors, surveyors will record every wetland bird present, and mark its location on a map. This information will then be analysed in order to understand species movements along the transect, identifying important areas, and providing the opportunity for us to think about how the burn (and river) can be enhanced for wildlife. The data will also enable us to protect what we already have, providing a more in depth knowledge of local wetland birds, and demonstrating the importance of the tidal nature of the Ouseburn for wildlife.

So far we have hosted two training workshops for 10 new volunteer surveyors! We were even treated to a view of the female Kingfisher at the Boat Club.

We’re really looking forward to analysing the data, but in the meantime we need as much data (and as many volunteers) as possible! If you would like to get involved in the Wetland Bird Survey we will be hosting an additional training workshop on Sunday 25th February, 3pm – 4.30pm, find out more.

Blossom in the valley
How to use iNaturalist