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August 2020 - The Rangers Return

As the Summer fades and Autumn draws in, a magical change happens all along our coast.  Migratory birds start to return to our shores. This is a busy time for an organisation that helps to raise awareness of these birds, such as the brent goose and the curlew.

'Bird Aware Solent' is made up of local authorities and conservation organisations to help the future of internationally protected ducks, geese and wading birds.  They have a team of Rangers that visit busy places where people and the birds like to congregate.  Places like Ryde Sands on the Isle of Wight, Emsworth, Weston and Calshot.

The Rangers talk to visitors, highlighting the birds on the beach and why they return to the Solent every year.  With social distancing measures in place, their task this year is a little trickier.  To adhere to this, Rangers will be using an application on their mobile device to enable people to see magnified views of the birds going about their business. Councillor Se├ín Woodward Chairman of the Partnership for South Hampshire (PfSH), the body that oversees Bird Aware, adds, 'Lockdown has created change for everyone, and the Bird Aware Rangers are no exception.  We have been working closely with Partner organisations and following government guidelines to make sure that the Ranger team can do their job as effectively as possible for the return of the winter birds.'

Every year, Bird Aware employs Seasonal Rangers so that more important messages about protecting the birds can be conveyed. Keep an eye out for the Rangers on a beach near you and get involved by sticking to paths and keeping your distance from the birds.

(Picture taken in September 2019, before social distancing rules can into force.)