Headstarting is a collaborative effort between WWT, BirdsRussia and the RSPB, and occurs as part of the International Arctic Expedition mounted each year by BirdsRussia under the leadership of Dr. Evgeny Syroechkovskiy.

Spoon-billed Sandpiper Announcement

It’s with great pride and sadness that we announce the successful breeding of the first spoonie chick at Slimbridge and the first ever anywhere in the world, however the bird has sadly died. Just as we were about to officially announce the news, it died of a tragic flying injury that
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Sleepy Spoonies. Almost in complete juvenile plumage. Photo by Nikolay Yakoshev.

News from the Field: Onto the Release Pen!

A lot has happened since the last update on the 19th July. Here’s the story so far… By the 12 July all those that were able to hatch had done so. In the first 24/48 hours of a chick’s life it gets nourishment from the remaining yolk inside its body. This gives the chicks time to
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News from the Field: The First Chicks

On the 5th July the first eggs began to pip, 5 days on and we have 14 chicks so far! The eggs are weighed regularly throughout incubation to track their progress but as due date approaches they are checked carefully for the first signs of hatching. At around 19 days of incubation the
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White-billed Diver on Lake Pekul’neyskoye. Photo by James Phillips.

News from the field: A Close Encounter with the Loons

Update from James Phillips who is now back in the UK There are certain iconic birds that capture the imagination, that define a given landscape or habitat or are just emblematic of those beautiful remote wild places that we all on occasion dream about. The White-billed Diver or the Ye
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'Spoon-billed Bagpiper'. Photo by Jodie Clements.

News from the Field: A Full Incubator

Spirits are high now the incubator is full and the River mouth is finally open! This year a grand total of 35 eggs have been collected by Nickolay and Ivan, 31 before the re-lay cut-off date (21st June) allowing females the chance to lay a second clutch and males to rear their own bro
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A full clutch of Spoonie eggs, waiting for collection. Photo by Jodie Clements.

News from the Field: The First Eggs

The first few eggs are safe in the incubator, but the search for more nesting pairs continues… Finding Spoon-billed Sandpiper pairs has been a little tricky this year. Normally very site loyal they tend to nest in the same place every year but with the heavy flooding many birds have b
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Lime 38 singing. Photo by Jodie Clements.

News from the Field: We’ve arrived! And so have the Spoonies..

We’ve finally reached Meinypil’gyno and already can’t wait to get stuck in to the 2018 season! Our journey from Heathrow to Meina has taken 5 days, with a short delay in Moscow and a 1 day extra wait for the helicopter at Anadyr. Being met by Russian staff at Moscow and Anadyr h
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Spoon-billed Sandpiper in Meinypil'gyno. Photo by Roland Digby.

News from the Field: Initial Report

Preparations in Russia have begun for the 2018 breeding season! Most of the headstarting team are already in Meinypil’gyno awaiting the return of the Spoon-billed Sandpipers. This year the headstarting team welcomes a new member. Jodie Clements has been working with the Slimbridge Spo
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Pink Red Right (2012 female) and Pink Dark Green Right (2012 male) showing off their breeding plumage. Photo by Jodie Clements.

Slimbridge Spoonies: A Quick Update

The seven females and their partners seem settled in their breeding aviaries… but will they lay eggs? ‘Time-shifting’ the Spoonies, by six weeks, has so far, led to many birds acquiring breeding plumage six weeks sooner. With the beginning of territorial singing coin
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Spoon-billed Sandpiper Task Force

Latest Newsletter from the Spoon-billed Sandpiper Task Force

You wont find a more in-depth or compelling compilation of Spoon-billed Sandpiper news any where else! Discover recent sightings along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Find out more about Spoon-billed sandpiper migration and tagging efforts to aid field surveys. Read the latest on
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