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Curlews are the largest European wading bird, with a wingspan of up to 1 metre. They feed in estuaries during the winter months, but move inland to breed on heather moorlands and boggy wetlands. We havent seen any in the farmland around our workshop in Hawick, though we do have plenty of Oystercatchers here; their distinctive screech being heard all over the Borthwick valley during the summer months. We did see a couple of Curlews on a recent holiday to the stunning island of Arran, wading on the beautiful beaches there.
Curlews are now on the red list as a conservation priority urgently needing our help. Intensive farming has ruined breeding grounds, as has turning areas of moorland into managed woodland. It is clear why farmers would want to cut the grass in Spring and early summer when the weather ends up being pretty much continuous rain through July and August, but this has the effect of destroying grassland where curlews and other wading birds like to nest, therefore having a major effect of their populations.
Many of our Curlew weathervanes go out to coastal locations, and we are often asked about the longevity of our metalwork in the sea air. It's genuinely difficult to answer as there are so many variables, but a weathervane mounted in a sheltered garden in the middle of the country should look good for decades, however the same weathervane in an exposed coastal location would definitely have a reduced lifespan due to the salt in the air. All of our weathervanes are electroplated with zinc to protect against rust so are as hard wearing as they can be for anywhere near the price.
Our range of Bird weathervanes can make a great unique gift for anyone with a keen interest in bird watching, and we are happy to create new designs at no extra cost.