The Chough is in the county's coat of arms alongside the miner and the fisherman, reflecting the bird's importance in Cornish culture. In Cornish legend it is said that King Arthur transformed into a chough when he died with the red feet and beak representing his violent, bloody end.
Cornwall was once a stronghold for Choughs. They last nested in the county in 1952, long after they had been lost from the rest of England. As the chough declined, it became an increasingly prized target for egg collectors and trophy hunters. This may have finally sealed the bird's fate in Cornwall.
Volunteers provided round-the-clock surveillance to stop illegal egg collectors. Thus increasing the chances of a return of the Chough to Cornwall.
the National Trust, and
the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Built on the existing work, it aimed to promote the return of the chough to Cornwall through:
Encouraging the restoration of suitable feeding habitats for choughs by working with landowners. Reinstating traditional forms of livestock grazing on coastal pastures.
Monitoring and protecting the birds that are already present in Cornwall. Identifying their preferred feeding areas so that they can be improved.
Promoting the return of the chough to Cornwall. Raising awareness of how managed coastal habitats benefit our native wildlife.
Cattle grazing the Cornish cliffs provide the ideal habitat for the chough. It is hoped that providing more habitat for choughs to feed and breed on, such as that managed under the Countryside Stewardship Scheme, that this emblematic of Cornish birds will make a full natural recovery.
With nearly 100 birds in Cornwall by the summer 2019 the chough is going from strength to strength. Grazing along the coast is providing a suitable habitat under the Countryside Stewardship Scheme.
Cornwall Bird Watching and Preservation Society maintain the Chough sightings database for Cornwall. Adding to the many thousands of records received from birders and members of the public since 2001.
Please send your sightings to: email@example.com. Please include the date, place, 6 figure grid reference (if possible), and notes of any colour rings observed.
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