Issue 2021-4

Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 259–292

Avifauna of the Barycz Valley: current numbers and temporal trends

Wiesław Lenkiewicz, Beata Orłowska, Tadeusz Stawarczyk, Grzegorz Neubauer, Bartosz Smyk

Abstract: This paper presents changes in the breeding avifauna of the Barycz Valley recorded during last 25–30 years. Temporal trends for 19 bird species nesting at Milicz fish-ponds, the largest Polish fish-pond complex (ca. 6,500 ha), were presented. Among well-studied species, the increasing trend was recorded for 15 species, a declining trend for 13 species, while numbers of 4 species fluctuated without any clear trend. Eight species rarely nested in the valley. The strongest increasing trends were found for the Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus, Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca and Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida, whose local populations are important on the national level (they constitute, respectively, 20.5%, 29.7% and 23.5% of the Polish population). Populations of two species – the Common Tern Sterna hirundo and the Red-necked Grebe Podiceps grisegena, constituted ca. 10% of the national population, whereas in 8 other species the shares made up 5–10% of the national population. Among species with a declining trend two groups can be distinguished. The drop in the number of species associated with reedbeds, like Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris, Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus, Eurasian Coot Fulica atra and Little Crake Zapornia parva, probably results mainly from the increasing pressure of mammalian predators – American Mink Mustela vison, Raccoon Dog Nyctereutes procyonoides, Eurasian Red Fox Vulpes vulpes, Eurasian Otter Lutra lutra, and recently also Common Raccoon Procyon lotor, but also from the degradation of some reedbeds. The second group with a declining trend includes birds associated with wetlands, such as the Corncrake Crex crex, Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis, Thrush Nightingale Luscinia luscinia, Common Rosefinch Carpodacus erythrinus, whose habitats have been dried out. The overall outcome is, however, positive, as the numbers of species with increasing trends exceed the ones with a declining trend. Furthermore, some species with declining trends in Poland, still have strong and stable populations in the Barycz Valley (Common Tern, Red-necked Grebe).

Key words: long-term population trends, waterbirds, Barycz Valley, Milicz fish-ponds

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 293–309

Numbers and distribution of the Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus and European Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria in autumn 2020 in Poland

Włodzimierz Meissner, Dawid Cząstkiewicz, Jacek Antczak, Sebastian Guentzel

Abstract: National autumn count of Northern Lapwings Vanellus vanellus and Golden Plovers Pluvialis apricaria was conducted for the fourth time. In October 2020 we recorded a total of 171,000 Lapwings and 47,000 Golden Plovers at 530 sites, whereas in November 88,000 Lapwings and 68,000 Golden Plovers at 363 sites. Both species were more abundant in the northern part of the country, where in October and November, respectively, 45% and 49% of all Lapwings were found. Likewise, in the two months, respectively, 83% and 74% of all Golden Plovers were counted. In October median flock of Lapwings consisted of 120 ind., and in November of 88 ind. Most often flocks comprised between 101 and 500 ind. (40% of flocks in October and 29% in November). Median flock size of Golden Plovers included 62 ind. in October and 65 ind. in November. In October most flocks of Golden Plovers consisted of between 101 and 500 ind. (30%), while in November most often flocks of 11–50 ind. were encountered (29%). In both species mean flock size was lower compared to the previous count in 2014. Data from 110 sites visited in both months indicate that in all parts of Poland the numbers of Lapwings declined between October and November, while the opposite trend was found for the Golden Plovers. In October and November most Lapwings (36% and 37%, respectively) were found on emptied water reservoirs, mainly fish-ponds. Golden Plovers were observed most frequently on fields with winter crops, although between the two months the proportion of birds found in this habitat declined from 72% to 39%. In November 2020 at least 2–3% of Lapwings and 3–4% of Golden Plovers wintering in Europe were observed in Poland. This shows once again that Poland is an important site for these species during their migration.

Key words: Northern Lapwing, Vanellus vanellus, Eurasian Golden Plover, Pluvialis apricaria, autumn migration, habitat preferences

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 310–338

Rare Birds Panel in Poland – report 2019 for breeding species

Łukasz Ławicki, Szymon Beuch, Tomasz Chodkiewicz, Przemysław Wylegała, Jacek Betleja, Szymon Bzoma, Zdzisław Cenian, Robert Cymbała, Paweł Czechowski, Stanisław Czyż, Piotr Dębowski, Andrzej Dylik, Andrzej Górski, Grzegorz Grygoruk, Wojciech Guzik, Krzysztof Jankowski, Zbigniew Kajzer, Dominik Krupiński, Dorota Łukasik, Łukasz Matyjasiak, Grzegorz Neubauer, Sławomir Sielicki, Bartosz Smyk, Krzysztof Stasiak, Łukasz Wardecki, Marcin Wężyk, Maria Wieloch, Bartłomiej Woźniak, Monika Zielińska, Piotr Zieliński, Arkadiusz Sikora

Abstract: The report of the Rare Birds Panel presents abundance estimates for 32 rare breeding taxa (30 species and 2 subspecies) in Poland for 2019. The high or maximum numbers were recorded for: the Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus (190 pairs), Egyptian Goose Alopochen aegyptiaca (27 p.), Red-crested Pochard Netta rufina (52 p.), Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca (131 p.), Mandarin Duck Aix galericulata (96 p.), Great Snipe Gallinago media (345 males), Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax (1293 p.), Great Egret Ardea alba (378 p.), Great Grey Owl Strix nebulosa (10 p.), Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus (49 p.) and Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola (4500 m.). The declining trend concerned the Mediterranean Gull Ichthyaetus melanocephalus (42 p.), Western Osprey Pandion haliaaetus (27 p.) and European Roller Coracias garrulus (13 p.). The population of the Eurasian Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus (26 p.), Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata (167 p.), Greater Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga (17 p.; including 8 pure pairs) and Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos (33 p.) remained stable. The population of the Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis (130 p.) failed to produce any young. Outside the Biebrza Marshes 35 p. of the Citrine Wagtail Motacilla citreola were found. No more than 5 pairs were recorded for the Canada Goose Branta canadensis (1 p.), Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus (1 p.), Short-toed Snake Eagle Circaetus gallicus (3 p.), Short-eared Owl Asio flammeus (5 p.), Homeyer’s Grey Great Shrike Lanius excubitor homeyeri (1 p.), Carrion Crow Corvus corone (3 p. mixed with Hooded Crow C. cornix), Wallcreeper Tichodroma muraria (min. 1 p.) and Grey-headed Wagtail M. flava thunbergi (4 p.). There were no breeding records of the Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta, Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri, Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides and Redwing Turdus iliacus.

Key words: rare breeding species, distribution, numbers, trends, regions, Poland, report 2019

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 339–344

The first breeding record of the Baillon’s Crake Zapornia pusilla in Poland after an absence of more than 160 years

Marek Kołodziejczyk, Romuald Mikusek, Marcin Polak, Jan Jedlikowski

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 344–350

Observations of the Greenland White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons flavirostris in Poland and its field identification

Michał Polakowski

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 351–352

Beak and skin abnormality in the Rook Corvus frugilegus observed in Poland

Zuzanna Zaradzka

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 353–356

Update of the taxonomy of the Polish bird checklist

Tadeusz Stawarczyk

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 357–363

Numbers of waterbirds in the Bay of Gdańsk between September 2020 and April 2021

Włodzimierz Meissner, Andrzej Kośmicki, Szymon Bzoma, Sabina Buczyńska

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Ornis Polonica 2021, 62: 364–366

Hume R., Still R., Swash A., Harrop H. 2021. Europe’s Birds. An identification guide. Princeton University Press. ISBN: 978-0-691-17765-6

Tadeusz Stawarczyk

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