Woodpigeon – 2003-07 breeding

Columba palumbus – YSGUTHAN – Breeding resident

Comparison with previous alas:

1984-882003-07
Breeding confirmed174160
Breeding probable170235
Breeding possible7540
No of tetrads occupied419 (of 478)435 (of 490)
Percentage of tetrads87.7%88.8%

It was estimated that there were about 10,000 pairs breeding in Pembrokeshire at the end of the 1984-88 survey. This was based on an average of 25 pairs per occupied tetrad. The 1988-91 National Atlas used an average of about 40 per tetrad for the UK as a whole. The highest concentrations were found in woodland and areas of arable farming, particularly where these habitats were found adjacent to each other.

Woodland and arable farmland makes up only a small proportion of Pembrokeshire which is largely a pastoral county. Considering also that many of the fields are bounded by hedgebanks with few suitable trees for nesting, makes it likely that Woodpigeon density is lower than the UK average. It is notable too that only a 4% increase in distribution was found between the two local surveys, 1984-88 and 2003 – 2007, compared to a 35% increase in Wales as a whole between 1994 and 2007 noted by the BBS. Using an estimated average of 26 pairs per tetrad it is thought that about 11,000 pairs were nesting in the county at the end of 2007.

Graham Rees (County bird recorder 1981 to 2007)

Rees G.H., Haycock R.J., Haycock A, Hodges J.E., Sutcliffe S.J., Jenks P, and Dobbins R. 2008, Atlas of Breeding Birds in Pembrokeshire 2003-07. Pembrokeshire Bird Group.

More about the Woodpigeon in Pembrokeshire