Flanders Moss NNR
Nature doesn’t just start as soon as you cross the boundary into a nature reserve. The approach to Flanders is often a good place to look out for birds of all sorts using the surrounding farmland. Yesterday a flock of lapwing were using a field very close to the reserve to rest up in. You might think that a group of 40-50 medium sized birds with patches of white, black and shiny green might be quite obvious but that obvious colour pattern actually acts like an invisibility cloak on wet arable fields. It takes some dangerous, high speed birding to actually spot them so be careful as you scan fields while driving!
We are always pleased to lapwing in the area. Though still a regularly seen bird their breeding population has taken a massive drop, mainly due to changes in agricultural land management. The birds we saw are spending the winter here in central Scotland. These particular birds had probably headed to a more sheltered inland field because of the foul weather. Birds that winter in Scotland will be made up of birds that probably bred in Scotland further north. But numbers are supplemented by Eastern European and Scandinavian birds. I would love to know where these birds had spent the summer and how far they have travelled.