The 2021 national Turtle Dove survey – Squares available

There are still squares available in the following areas

  • Northiam
  • Wadhurst
  • Frant
  • Mayfield
  • Arundel
  • Singleton
  • Chichester
  • Midhurst
  • Billinghurst

You still have time to take up a square as the first survey needs to be completed by the 20th of June.

“The national survey hopes to mobilise volunteers, farmers, study groups, county bird clubs and other organisations to record turtle dove across their UK range.

The results of the survey will give us a comprehensive overview of the current size and distribution of the UK’s breeding turtle dove population. This will allow us to assess the progress of conservation work to date and help ensure that future conservation efforts are targeted to where they will have the greatest impact.

The national survey runs between mid-May and the end of July 2021.”

There are squares still available across the whole of Sussex so if you would like to sign up for the survey please follow the link below. Any records outside of the squares would also be welcome, so please do record on birdtrack or irecord.

Turtle Doves in Sussex

Turtle doves were last surveyed in 2019. The following from the report shows the extent of Turtle doves from that survey.

“Sussex is still thought to hold significant and nationally important numbers. In the 2008-11 breeding atlas there was evidence of breeding (proved, probable and possible) in 195 tetrads in Sussex with the county population estimated as around 300 pairs (Thomas et al. 2014). Since then there have been between 200-300 records submitted each year to the County Recorder although a large fraction of these are from one site – the Knepp Estate.

The numbers and distribution of Turtle Doves in Sussex have declined markedly since the 2008-11 atlas with the numbers of occupied tetrads down by an estimated 77%. We estimate the county population at around 80 territories with a range of 50-100.”