Anyone with a love of birds can join, no matter their level of experience! Our current members range from beginners to fully-fledged twitchers. We organise many activities and events, with the aim of enriching our understanding of birds and their fascinating behaviours. In addition, many of our members want to develop careers in ornithology, we try to facilitate this by hosting talks from professional bird researchers, ringers and even popular Wildlife TV presenters.
CUOS also gets involved in the conservation of UK bird species that desperately need help to survive.
This academic year CUOS has been given the exciting opportunity to take on BTO’s monthly Wetland Bird Surveys (WeBS) at Roath Park Lake (Cardiff). This is a fantastic opportunity for our members to gain experience in undertaking a national survey, and also to improve their wetland bird identification skills.
Many of our members do not have prior experience of bird surveys, nor expertise identification skills of wetland birds. However, the committee (experienced WeBS counters) have planned a range of teaching sessions so that everyone can take part. Roath Park is a perfect spot for beginners to WeBS and birds in general, as there are a fantastic range of species at numbers that are easily countable.
In October we did our first WeBS and recorded a fantastic 19 species!
The highlights of the count for us were: Little Grebe (4); Pochard (1); Shoveler (17); Teal (10); Tufted Duck (51); Wigeon (1) and Kingfisher (1).
We felt especially lucky to see a Pochard on the lake as it was early in the year to spot one.
We look forward to our future WeBS and hope that this is the start of something special for the society that will get passed on through generations of students and inspire more young birders to get involved with important surveying.
Follow us on twitter @CUBirds!