Friday, November 20, 2009

The Predatory Bird Monitoring Scheme, now based in Lancaster, (CEH Lancaster, Library Avenue,, Bailrigg, Lancaster, LA1 4AP. Tel. 01524 595830; e-mail: is a scheme run jointly by Natural England, the Environment Agency and that well know group The Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU). Their remit is simple - a long term monitoring programme of the levels of 'contaminants' found in the liver and eggs of predatory and fish eating birds.
A recent article on the Birdguides Webzine featured a Shropshire kestrel sent for analysis: "As many as 70% of the Common Kestrel liver tissue samples tested contain traces of rodenticide. Some of these are the less toxic 'first-generation rodenticides' such as Warfarin™, designed for outdoor use, but most, including our Kestrel, show traces of the more toxic and persistent second generation of rodenticides. For our Kestrel there were traces of Brodifacoum™ which, despite its use being restricted to indoors, is found in 16% of Kestrels".
With kestrels apparently declining in numbers this finding adds more concern to their future well-being.
So, if you find any higher predator - owl, heron, grebe etc - please contact PBMS and see whether they are interested. If so they'll send you postage and packing for its return.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Predatory Bird Monitoring Scheem is actually run and managed by the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, who do all of the post-mortems, all the lab analysis, and hold all of the data and specimens. It is CEH scientists that analyse the data and publish the results too.. It is joint-funded by NE, the EA etc., but it is CEH that does the actual work - hence the address is CEH Lancaster.

11:07 AM  

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