Cirl bunting

The Cirl Bunting has Bounced Back

The reappearance of the Cirl Bunting, Emberiza cirlus, has been taken as a sign of hope. It might represent that with great effort, animals can be protected and helped not to be endangered anymore.

George Montagu, an ornithologist, discovered the bird near his Devon home in 1800. It extended its range across much of southern Britain, before going into sharp retreat in the 1970s. By the year 1989, there were almost 120 pairs all around south Devon.

Unfortunately, after some years the Cirl Buntings were almost extinct in Britain. However, they bounced back due to the efforts made by RSPB and farmers.

Cirl Buntings were widely spread across southern Britain, but they started to decline through the 20th century in a steadily way. Their population reached a low point of about 100 pairs in the 1980s, and they were almost entirely confined to Devon. This precipitous decline can be seen in Bird Atlas of 1968–72 and 1988–91.

After a long term of conservation work by the RSPB and local landowners in Devon, the decline was altered, and the Cirl Bunting population exceeded 1,000 pairs by summer,  for the first time since its highest amount of specimen.

This modification also incorporated 65 territories from a re-introduction scheme in Cornwall, as well as several pairs outside of the core range in Devon. As the population is still in the process of expansion, logging sightings in BirdTrack might be considered vital to track the corresponding expanding distribution of Cirl Buntings in Britain, especially during summer time which seems to be the most productive time of the year.

Besides, just a few British birds have suffered such mixed fortunes as the cirl bunting.  It was thanks to the RSPB, and especially project officer Cath Jeffs who persuaded local farmers to create the appropriate habitat for the buntings, it finally bounced back. The main consequence of his actions is that today there are more than 1,000 breeding pairs.

It is possible to see them as soon as you arrive at Labrador Bay RSPB reserve, just west of Teignmouth. They are considered to be both subtle and stunning. In the case of the males, they display a fetching combination of moss-green, yellow, and rusty orange, with a black mask and throat, quite unlike any other British songbird. They are magnificent animals to see.

As it was previously stated, the Cirl Bunting grow in quantity provided a shade of hope in the animals´ conservation field. It opens up a new panorama, and it brings about the idea of reproducing the same process with other species not only in the present but also in the near future.If you think this topic was informative and you want to know more about cirl bunting or any other bird, please contact us. And if you would like to contribute with our organization, it will be more than welcome.