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"British Wildlife is the pulsating heart of the UK nature conservation movement"

Matthew Oates, National Trust

"The most important and informative publication on wildlife of our times"

Michael McCarthy, The Independent

"Packed with readable, thoughtful, up to date articles; written by ecologists and naturalists for ecologists and naturalists"

Nick Baker, Presenter and Naturalist

From issue:   Issue:   British Wildlife 32.6 May 2021

The Ring Ouzel – ecology and conservation of the ‘mountain Blackbird’ in the UK

By - Innes Sim, David Douglas

The Ring Ouzel Turdus torquatus (hereafter referred to simply as Ouzel) is a true specialist of the UK’s upland and montane areas, spending the summer on hillsides, in steep valleys and among crags, where it replaces the closely related Blackbird T. merula. Numbers have fallen sharply over the last few decades and research is beginning to shed light on the reasons for this decline. This article describes Ouzel ecology, as well as recent research and conservation activity.

A ‘chack chack’ call rings out across the hillside; you glimpse a dark shape before it flies out of view. This is often the first indication that there is an Ouzel around, and such brief encounters are not uncommon: this species is shy. Catch it in the open, though, and you will find yourself watching a Blackbird with added extras.

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More from 'BW 32.6 - May 2021 '

"British Wildlife is the pulsating heart of the UK nature conservation movement."

Matthew Oates, National Trust

"The most important and informative publication on wildlife of our times"

Michael McCarthy, The Independent

"Packed with readable, thoughtful, up to date articles; written by ecologists and naturalists for ecologists and naturalists"

Nick Baker, Presenter and Naturalist