Have you seen the perfect 10?

HAVE you seen the perfect 10?” is the question that the Greater Manchester Birding City Region Project (GMBCR) is asking residents and visitors.

The project, which is based in Royton and does much of its research at Tandle Hill Country Park, promoted ‘the perfect 10’ as part of the third Greater Manchester Green Summit.

Oldham’s symbolic tawny owl. Photo thanks to Little Owl Farm

James Walsh, aka the Mancunian Birder and one of the originators of the GMBCR project said: “For this years’ green summit our theme was ‘the perfect 10’, 10 bird species selected to represent each of the 10 boroughs.

“At the inaugural Greater Manchester Green Summit in March 2018 we launched the GMBCR project at Manchester Central.

“At the Green Summit in March 2019 at The Lowry, Salford Quays, we highlighted the eco-tourism potential of Greater Manchester with a tour around the docklands to see birds such as peregrine falcons.

“This year we highlighted the amazing birdlife present in all the boroughs.”

Shaun Hargreaves, of the GMBCR project, said: “We launched the “perfect 10’ film at the virtual Manchester Festival of Nature in June to critical acclaim on social media.

“Now that we have put Greater Manchester on the map, we are now promoting ‘the perfect 10’ film to all the Greater Manchester councils, media and marketing agencies.

“Collectively, the GMBCR project has spent many years researching the environment and birdlife of Greater Manchester and we have carefully selected the 10 bird species that best represent each borough.

“From the serene mute swan in Salford to the beautiful northern lapwing in Trafford, the colourful rose-ringed parakeet in Manchester, stunning kingfisher in Bolton, the elegant little egret in Bury, the pretty mandarin duck in Stockport, the superstar willow tit in Wigan, the powerful peregrine in Rochdale, the wise Oldham tawny owl to the picturesque red grouse on Tameside, the Greater Manchester city region has world-class birdlife.”

The tawny owl, scientific name strix aluco, is the species that is the most widespread in the Oldham borough, and is found in parks, gardens and country parks.

The superstar of the Oldham borough, it is a bird that many Oldham residents are familiar with and is fairly ingrained in the local psyche.

The owl is the symbol of the Oldham borough and is on the Oldham Athletic’s club badge. And ‘dare to be wise” is the Oldham motto based on the generally accepted folklore that owls are wise birds and represent wisdom.

If you are a night-owl it is possible to have an amazing tawny owl wildlife experience in the Oldham borough. If you are observant and really lucky you might even be able see a tawny owl perched in a tree during the day at sites such as Tandle Hill Country Park, the Northern Roots site on Snipe Clough and Daisy Nook Country Park.

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