Colourful curlew painting raises £625 to save protected birds

Painted by professional sporting and wildlife artist Owen Williams, the picture was auctioned at an event organised by the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), hosts of the UK lowland curlew recovery project.

The proceeds have gone to Curlew Country, which works with farmers in the Shropshire hills and Welsh Marches to protect and monitor curlew nests.

This is done through a conservation practice called headstarting which involves collecting curlew eggs from wild nests before incubating them artificially.

The resulting chicks that hatch are then raised to fledging stage, when they are able to fly, and released back into the wild.

Through this process, 21 chicks were reared and released into the project area, with hopes that some of these birds will return in two years’ time.

Mr Williams said: “I am delighted to have made a modest contribution in the valiant efforts being made to save our curlew.

“This is because the call of the curlew runs like golden thread through the weave of happy memories of my time growing up on a hill farm in west Wales. Several years back that thread broke, and I am saddened by its absence, so anything I can do to help it being rewoven into our rural backdrop is worthwhile.”

The Curlew Country team is currently searching for further funding to support curlew recovery work in the future, as well as planning for the next season.