Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

FRIDAY, AUGUST 4, 2017 Region Playing Part in Future of Species; Three Pairs of Hen Harriers Make Nests in Northumberland

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

FRIDAY, AUGUST 4, 2017 Region Playing Part in Future of Species; Three Pairs of Hen Harriers Make Nests in Northumberland

Article excerpt

Byline: Tony Henderson Reporter ec.news@ncjmedia.com @Hendrover

ONCE again, Northumberland has proved to be the last bastion for a critically-endangered bird of prey.

Five pairs of hen harriers attempted nesting in Northumberland, with three being successful and fledging 10 young.

This is of vital importance as there were no other successful nests in England for a bird which is on the edge of extinction in the country.

Four of the nest were on Forestry Commission land in Northumberland.

This year's success follows that of last year, when two Northumberland nests produced six young, and 2015, as eight birds fledged from two nests.

That was the first breeding success for hen harriers in the North East in seven years.

The latest boost is payback for the efforts of the Northumberland Hen Harrier Partnership of the Forestry Commission, RSPB, Natural England, Northumberland National Park Authority, Northumberland Wildlife Trust, Ministry of Defence, Northumbria Police and a raptor experts.

Andrew Miller, partnership chairman and head of programmes and conservation at Northumberland National Park, said: "Hen harriers are still facing an uphill battle to reestablish themselves in the uplands of England.

"However with the positive support of all our partners including key landowners, 10 young birds have successfully fledged. Working together and using the latest scientific techniques is also increasing our knowledge of this amazing species.

"It is fantastic that we hopefully have the beginnings of a stable population in the county, with birds raising chicks and returning, and also spending time in Northumberland in the winter.

"It is extremely gratifying for everyone in the partnership, especially the stalwart volunteers who are out there throughout the year, monitoring the birds and helping us to look after the nest sites. …

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