Have you Heard a Crex Crex

Corncrakes have been arriving since the 8th of April and their rasping calls are starting to be reported across the Hebrides, Western Isles, Orkney & North Scotland.

This noisy visitor migrates every year from central Africa and spends the summer raising chicks in the long vegetation around our crofts and farms. Unfortunately, corncrakes have suffered serious declines throughout the UK and the fortunes of this noisy bird remains precarious. On Tiree numbers remain strong but the number of calling males dipped below 300 last year, something that has not happened for over 16 years.

With support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, RSPB Scotland is working with farmers, crofters & communities continuing to help improve the breeding success of this rare bird. At the end of the 19th century, corncrakes bred in every region of the UK and tales of sleepless nights from the loud ‘crex crex’ were common. RSPB Scotland would love to know if this bird is causing sleep deprivation in your area! And with the launch of a new website for the project ‘Corncrake Calling’ RSPB Scotland are asking members of the public if they have seen or heard a corncrake. Reports can be submitted online here

https:// www.rspb.org.uk/our-work/ conservation/projects/corncrakecalling/ report-a corncrake/ and will help monitor the locations of the birds particularly in areas where we least expect them.

If you would like to get involved in the project, managing habitat, reporting corncrake calling or signing up as a Corncrake Champion, you can go to the website https:// www.rspb.org.uk/our-work/ conservation/projects/corncrakecalling/ or email CorncrakeCalling@rspb.org. uk