FLIGHT OF FANCY; Exotic bird species on rise in Ireland as temperatures soar.
Byline: By BRIAN UNWIN
MEDITERRANEAN birds are flocking to Ireland - thanks to our sizzling weather.
Herons, birds of prey and feathered songsters more suited to the Spanish sierras or Majorca's sun-baked scrubland have turned up in the South and West.
However, the dry weather also brings problems - with the ground so hard, native species such as blackbirds and song thrushes are struggling to feed their chicks.
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Raised in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, he was given his first guitar when a bout of encephalitis kept him out of school for a year. , of the UK's Centre for Ecology and Hydrology The Centre for Ecology and Hydrology is a publicly-funded body of the United Kingdom specialising in interdisciplinary scientific research on terrestrial and freshwater environments. , said these risks had been predicted for a long time.
As the weather gets warmer, southern European species are likely to expand northwards so such appearances could be part of an increasing trend.
One expert warned: "We must be prepared for climate change losses.
Native wildlife in northern regions and on mountains could well be harmed by warmer weather and for some there will be nowhere to go."
The arrival to these shores of glossy ibises, dark-plumaged heron-like birds with long curved bills, is seen as especially significant.
One or two sightings a year would be normal but more than 30 have been reported in Co Kerry.
Birds of prey are also prominent in the invasion and they include a major surprise, an Egyptian vulture vulture, common name for large birds of prey of temperate and tropical regions. The Old World vultures (family Accipitridae) are allied to hawks and eagles; the more ancient American vultures and condors are of a different family (Cathartidae) with distant links to , that in a normal year might have been assumed to have escaped from a zoo.
The 6ft wing span raptor raptor
In general, any bird of prey, including owls. The raptors are sometimes restricted to eagles, falcons, hawks, and vultures (birds of the order Falconiformes), all diurnal predators that “seize and carry off” (Latin raptare) their prey. was spotted in England near Scoulton, Norfolk, then at Warham, near Wells-next-the-Sea, and finally East Barsham, near Fakenham.
Russell Slack of the Bird Guides Online information service, labelled its appearance as "potentially one of the sightings of the year".
Other exotic birds reported include a black stork, a purple heron, more than 30 hoopoes, several European bee-eaters, red-rumped swallows and subalpine warblers.
HOT ARRIVAL: Bald ibis is new to these shores; SPOTTED: Egyptian vulture