Amy Burns RSPB 05.03.20

Meeting of Thursday 5th March 2020Speaker, Ms Amy Burns, RSPB

Amy Burns [left] with President Audrey Hodge
Amy is the RSPB’s Estate Manager for Fermanagh and South Tyrone. She heads up a team of seven who collectively manage the bird life on 43 of Lough Erne’s 154 islands along with 210 hectares of wetland and 400 hectares of forest.   Essentially the work is about habitat management and maintaining a variety of environments for the particular needs of particular birds.   Lapwings, also known as Plovers and Pee-wits, thrive in hay meadows. Curlews need longer grass in which to nest and hide their chicks. Sadly, their numbers are in steep decline due to habitat loss.   The RSPB owns a herd of Highland Cattle which it moves from island to island to graze and keep the vegetation short. Amy showed slides and played recordings of the calls of several species monitored by the RSPB including snipe, redshank, terns and gulls. RSPB in Fermanagh also manages 600 hectares on Cuilcagh Mountain, home to red grouse, skylarks and hen harriers.   Amy’s work brings her into daily contact with all sorts of wildlife including huge array of butterflies and moths. Her talk prompted many questions and much interest, for which she was warmly thanked by Eleanor Lyden