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Twite birds thrive at Cemex Dove Holes quarry

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World Cement,

The number of Twite birds at Cemex Dove Holes quarry has increased. The rise in the population is thanks to the flower-rich five hectare meadow planted on the edge of the quarry site which provides the young Twites with the sorrel seeds they need.

It appears that the flock in the wider area around the quarry now stands at over 60 birds, an amazing increase from the 10 birds seen in summer 2014.

The ‘red listed’ Twite (Linaria flavirostris) has become a rare bird in England, breeding in only a few small pockets in the South Pennines, including the Dove Holes quarry near Buxton. Last summer, Cemex working with the Royal Society for the protection of birds (RSPB) put aside a five hectare site next to the breeding area of the birds and planted a flower mix that would provide exactly the right food for its young.

This autumn it was decided to ring as many Twites as possible in order to learn about the ecology and demography of this isolated population and see if the Pennine birds fly south and mix with Twites on the south east coast. Over 40 birds were ringed in total.

Adapted from press release by Joseph Green

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