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Finland trip: day 4

By Mary Colwell | 16/05/2023

Day 4 – Curlews in North Karelia It makes sense when you see curlews in vast peatlands. A large brown bird doesn’t look so big or stand out so much in the vast mires of North Karelia, in fact it looks small, and it blends into the background, camouflaged against the browns, whites, and greys …

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Finland trip: day 3

By Mary Colwell | 15/05/2023

Finland – Day 3. Linnunsuo wetland and Liperi to see the curlews in the nesting areas in the western part of North Karelia. The sun glinted off the freshwater pools, and the azure sky was filled with the sound of hundreds of little gulls and migrating barnacle geese. In the shallows were dabbling shoveler, teal, …

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Finland trip: day 2

By Mary Colwell | 15/05/2023

This morning, before we left Helsinki, we were hosted by Nina Mikander, Global Director of Policy for Birdlife International. She put on a magnificent brunch – a big thank you from Curlew Action! Our conversation was wide-ranging, from the declining status of ‘meadow birds’, of which curlew are just one, to the main threats facing …

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Finland trip: day one

By Mary Colwell | 14/05/2023

Saturday 13th By Mary Colwell We are on our way to Helsinki! A small group from Curlew Action – Professor Russ Wynn (a trustee and ecologist/naturalist), Ellen Bradley (Manager of Curlew Action) and myself – are on a mission to explore the relationship between curlews and trees and predators, a complex but increasingly vital interaction …

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Natural history gcse: one year on

By Mary Colwell | 08/05/2023

Next to my home in central Bristol is a block of flats that saw fame in the BBC series, The Outlaws, which used them as the set for desolate, inner-city living.  In a small patch of waste ground in the midst of the concrete someone has created a mini garden, complete with flowers, herbs and …

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John W. Garbutt Long Billed Curlew 2

Long-billed curlew

By Caledonian | 15/04/2023

The Long-billed Curlew, Numenius americanus, is aptly named for having one of the longest bills of all shorebirds in America. Its plumage contains shades of light brown, speckled with cinnamon and a paler underbelly. Its curved bill is complemented by a long, elegant neck and slender long legs to help the Long-billed Curlew traverse through …

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World Curlew day

By Curlew Action | 14/04/2023

Sometimes it helps to set aside a day to shine a light on something important, and for a number of reasons I chose April 21st for World Curlew Day. It happens to be the birthday of my environmental hero, John Muir, who was born in 1838. It is the average first laying date for curlews …

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Little curlew

By Curlew Action | 11/04/2023

The aptly named Little Curlew (Numenius minutus), is the smallest of the Curlew species.  Its long neck and upright posture give it an elegant appearance as it walks through the grasslands it inhabits on its slender blue-grey legs. Its upper body is speckled with buff, brown and black feathers, whilst its lower body has a …

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Far Eastern Curlew

Far-eastern curlew

By Curlew Action | 05/04/2023

The Far-Eastern curlew, Numenius madagascariensis, is the largest migratory shorebird in the world. Its iconic curved bill is well known across the many countries that span the East Asian and Australasian Flyway. Its famous call is similar to that of the Eurasian curlew, but noticeably deeper in tone. Despite its status as a well-loved bird …

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Irish curlew

By Mary Colwell | 13/03/2023

Photo by Annemarie Loof By Mary Colwell. I can’t think of a more Irish bird than the Curlew, that singer of bitter-sweet songs over fields and bogs that heralds the start of warmer days. Come April, the bubbling call builds into a crescendo of urgent notes, at once sad and ecstatic, and it never fails …

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