Welcome to the LDV NNR ringing blog, this blog is designed to share the experiences, findings and tales from a group of dedicated ringers. We specialise in conservation orientated research projects, largely focusing on wildfowl, waders, owls and birds of conservation concern, in and around the Vale of York NNR's.

NB - Whilst the purpose of this blog was initially designed to cover our nationally important wildfowl ringing activities, it now also features wildlife and work posts, explaining we how manage the NNR for both wildlife and people.

For daily sightings please visit our Twitter account: https://twitter.com/ldv_nnr (@LDV_NNR)

For details of events, volunteer tasks and wildlife images please visit our Facebook account: https://www.facebook.com/Lower-Derwent-Valley-Skipwith-Common-NNR

Monday, 6 March 2017

01/03/17 - Bags of Help

There are few sights and sounds that typify late summer than the presence of flocks of screaming Swifts, as they twist and turn in their aerial pursuits of each other around our towns and villages. Sadly though this is becoming an increasingly less frequent event - numbers have declined by over 42% since 1995, with a big factor in this decline thought to be a lack of viable nest sites as old buildings containing nests are demolished or ‘improved’, and new buildings with their modern materials and standards not providing the same opportunities for these amazing little birds. 

New boxes going up around the villages

Around the Lower Derwent Valley NNR the LDV team have been busy working with local communities to raise awareness of the plight of Swifts, by working with local groups and schools in order to tell their story – from the amazing migration and remarkable lifestyle – to helping create nest boxes for local homes, and making flags to welcome the return of the Swifts back to our local area in the next few months. 

Wheldrake school children getting involved

Many people have been kind enough to donate their time and skills, even timber, but the Friends of the LDV have been successful in moving this onto the next level, and in getting this project into the Tesco stores ‘Bags of Help’ scheme, where monies collected from the 5p levy on carrier bags are made available for local projects and good causes, by customers voting in their stores for the one they would like funds to go to. We are pleased to say the Swift project will be part of a vote during March and April so would like to ask anyone who shops in the following areas to please consider using Tesco and voting for our project so we can continue to make sure that our local school children can continue to live in villages that still have skies full of screaming Swifts and be able to enjoy their aerial acrobatics.

Bags of help

All the following stores listed below are taking part in the scheme - please spread the word to families, friends and work colleagues and get voting!

Goole (Tesco Superstore) Boothferry Road DN14 6BB

Harrogate (Tesco Express) Cambridge Road HG1 1AA

Harrogate (Tesco Express) Knaresborough Road HG2 7HY

Knaresborough (Tesco Express) High Street HG5 0EN

Selby (Tesco Superstore) Portholme Road YO8 4QQ

Selby Brayton (Tesco Express) Doncaster Road YO8 9EG

Thirsk (Tesco Superstore) Station Road YO7 1PZ

York Acomb Wood (Tesco Express) Acomb Wood Drive YO24 3XN

York Askham Bar (Tesco Extra) Tadcaster Road YO24 1LW

York Clifton Moor (Tesco Extra) Stirling Road YO30 4XZ

York Goodramgate (Tesco Express) YO1 7LS

York Huntington (Tesco Express) Huntington Road YO31 9HP

York Low Ousegate (Tesco Express) YO1 9QX

York Piccadilly (Tesco Express) YO1 9TU

York Strensall (Tesco Express) The Village YO32 5XR

To check the location of any of the above stores, please go to the Tesco website: http://tesco.com/store-locater/uk/


  1. Fantastic project, well done to everyone involved.

  2. Well done & Good Luck with the vote !

  3. An excellent initiative - good luck!
    Nick (from the Derbyshire Swift Project).