Skylarks benefitting from protected St Mary's Lands area says district council - The Leamington Observer

Skylarks benefitting from protected St Mary's Lands area says district council

Leamington Editorial 22nd Mar, 2021 Updated: 23rd Mar, 2021   0

SKYLARKS are benefitting say wildlife chiefs after moves were made to protect the grass nesting species on Warwick’s St Mary’s Lands.

The endangered birds have been spotted around the temporary fencing – organised by Warwick District Council – in an area known as Lammas Field where skylarks and meadow pipits have historically laid their eggs in the long grass.

The move has been supported by Warwickshire Wildlife Trust.

Spokesman Karl Curtis said: “To successfully breed these species need wide areas of long grass, which aren’t bordered too closely with other vegetation such as trees and hedges, the area chosen is therefore the perfect habitat. It’s essential that space is made for nature and protecting the small area from disturbance for the breeding season means that visitors to St Mary’s Lands can enjoy the sweet song of skylarks, just a stone’s throw from Warwick town centre.”

Warwick councillor Liam Bartlett has been speaking to dog owners and other users of the parkland during his regular visits. He added: “I’m very pleased with the positive feedback I’ve received about the work we are doing to protect our native birds. Local bird-watchers have already observed a number of skylarks revisiting the site and displaying behaviour that demonstrates that they feel protected there. We’re cautiously optimistic that they will now go on to successfully breed.”

Warwick District Council says wildlife evaluations and ecology studies in the last few years have shown skylark pairs in the area had dropped by a quarter along with a 40 per cent reduction in meadow pipits, with the latest estimates indicating a further decline.

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