PHOTOS: Threatened redwings flourish at Ranmore Common
SPOTTED: A Redwing at Ranmore Common Photo by National Trust
DESPITE their future being under threat, redwings are flying high at a Mole Valley beauty spot.
The permits are for anyone who works in the town to park their own vehicles due to its population plummeting by almost a third in recent times.
But photos show the birds are still flying high in Surrey as National Trust volunteers spotted them gathering food at Ranmore Common this month.
Native to Europe and Asia, the redwings traditionally visit Britain from Scandinavia during the winter in search of food.
The district’s wide range of green spaces provide a haven and feeding ground for both these and many other birds, ranging from the common to the threatened.
Camilla Morgan, from the National Trust, said: “Many bird-watchers explore Ranmore in hopes of catching a glimpse of some lesser-spotted, red-listed species.
“Woodcocks like to occupy low-growing scrub, fieldfares, redwings and yellowhammers prefer the fields and hedgerows, while mistle and song thrushes feel more at home in Polesden Lacey’s formal gardens.
“The area is so diverse that several other red-listed species may also be present but have not been officially confirmed.”
Data collected by groups such as the RSPB and Birdlife International suggest the redwing population has fallen by about 30 per cent in the last decade.
This decline, which has led to the species being put on the “red list” is being put down to harsh winters and global warming.
John Lawrence, group leader of RSPB East Surrey, said: “Redwings are usually very common during the winter months. We get a lot of thrushes, of which the redwing is a type, coming over from Scandinavia.
“They come over in flocks and eat the berries on the trees.
“They are the staple winter thrush.”
National Trust staff and volunteers spotted the redwings flying over heavily wooded areas while undertaking coppicing work as part of the winter conservation schedule on Ranmore Common.
Ranmore Common has site of special scientific interest status due to the rich variety of birdlife which inhabits the ancient woodland. To protect the animals, estate conservation is completed during the winter – the harshest season, so as not to encroach upon spring mating rituals