Author Topic: Corvid Distribution  (Read 4807 times)

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Offline admin

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Corvid Distribution
« on: November 22, 2013, 10:45:45 AM »
Strange one this. In Angus it is rare to see a magpie. In 60 years I think I have seen one. There are masses of other crows, including jackdaws.

In Aberdeen shire there are masses of magpies yet far fewer jackdaws, especially  inland.

Any reasons for this?
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Offline Roobarb

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2013, 11:16:28 AM »
I've often wondered about this too.
When we used to travel up from the south one of the first things we noticed was the lack of magpies when we stopped in the borders. I've never seen any in Sutherland either.
Out here on Uist ravens outnumber hoodies but I know why that is, someone shot all the hoodies. I wonder if the Angus (and border) magpies went the same way?


Andy

Offline corsican dave

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2013, 11:23:13 AM »
Milton Keynes has one of the highest population densities of magpies in the uk. Milton Keynes natural history society has the magpie as its emblem for that reason. apparently all the relatively low, scrubby vegetation on either side of the dual carriageways and lining the roads on the housing estates, combined with plenty of open areas,  provides a perfect habitat.

don't know if that sheds any light on the situation up here?
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Offline Inchlaggan

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2013, 11:30:57 AM »
No magpies here either, though I have seen them in Perthshire.
Plenty of Jays here though.
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Offline admin

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2013, 11:44:36 AM »
Might it be the cormorants may have eaten all the magpies in Angus?  :lol:
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Offline Gola

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2013, 12:01:31 PM »
Hi,

Just reading this, reminded me of a previous thread on Magpies which interested due to their numbers here in Ireland despite being a more recent blow in. here was my contribution back then.

"Magpies in abundance here in Ireland, although interestingly they are somewhat of a newcomer. Folklore often puts there presence down to Cromwell, the belief being that they came to Ireland with Cromwell and his troops. I have even heard them referred to as Cromwell's Crows.

Although generally happy to blame most ills on Cromwell I think in this instance he is probably innocent, as the first recorded Magpies in Ireland aren't until the 1670's and Cromwell had buggered off home by 1650. The most common view nowadays is that a single flock got blown across in a major storm in the 1670's and that all Irish magpies derive from them"

Nothing changed since then certainly no shortage. In order of numbers though crows around here in decending order would be Rooks, Jackdaws, Magpies, and Grey backs (hoodies) Jay's are an exceptional sighting.

Joe.

Offline burnie

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2013, 02:33:38 PM »
Angus has an odd distribution of Corvids, all including the Chough have been recorded in the County in the last decade. I have seen odd Magpies, one in our village a few years ago and frequently see them around "Clatterin Brig" on the way over the Cairn O Mount. Odd ones in Dundee as well. Ravens are found in the Glens, Loch Lee in particular and I saw a crow at Bridge of Dun that looked very much like a "Hoodie". Jays are to be found around the South Esk around Brechin and in Montreathmont Forest.
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Offline garryh

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2013, 05:32:44 PM »
the magpies must all be in west lothian.there has been a real explosion in magpie numbers.when i was young they were a rare sight but they are everywhere now.they seem to hang around the roads ,maybe thriving on roadkill.

Garry
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Offline admin

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2013, 05:41:48 PM »
Garry, the first magpie I ever saw was when I was a teenager visiting relatives near Balerno, Mid Lothian. I still remember it well, a  flashing movement of black and white, quite startling when you are not used to it and wondering what the hell it is.  :D
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Offline silverbutcher

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Re: Corvid Distribution
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2013, 06:58:13 PM »
Loads of magpies here in Ayrshire, and you always see them on the fringes of the M8 when driving through Glasgow.
They weren't always here in those numbers. I remember when I was a young un :D watching the kids tv programme Magpie wondering why I had never seen one of these striking looking birds it was named after. But we did have loads of Jackdaws then Fred. Not so many now.

Billy