Observers who have first-hand knowledge of rare breeding birds within the county are requested to submit their evidence to the appropriate Yorkshire Recorder or the Report Editor, to be forwarded to the Rare Breeding Birds Panel.

The numbers of breeding pairs recorded in Yorkshire from 2012 can be found here.

The RBBP was formed in 1972 by representatives of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, the British Trust for Ornithology, The Nature Conservancy Council and British Birds. The present Panel is made up of representatives of the Joint Nature Conservation Committee, RSPB, BTO, and the Association of County Report Editors, together with two independent members and a Secretary.

The Panel’s prime function is to act as a secure depository of sensitive information on the breeding of rare birds in Britain. Information is required for most species on Schedule 1 of the 1981 Wildlife and Countryside Act and other rare species dealt with by the Panel, including all the scarcer non-native breeding species. Information is requested on breeding or potential breeding records in three categories: possible, probable, proved. Definitions of these categories are on the recording forms.

Species for which information is required that are known to have bred, attempted to breed or displayed in recent years in Yorkshire are listed below.

The system used by the Panel for indicating geographical locations in their report is done on a regional basis with Yorkshire being part of ‘England North’. In some instances, the county will be named but should the observer request the omission of ‘Yorkshire’, the Panel will respect this with only the region being named.

Mediterranean gull at YWT North Cave Wetlands - Credit Mike Ashforth  Black-necked Grebes at YWT North Cave Wetlands - Credit Mike Ashforth

Mediterranean gull and Black-necked grebes at YWT North Cave Wetlands - Credit Mike Ashforth


Rare breeding birds in Yorkshire







Black-necked Grebe



Little Egret



Marsh Harrier

Hen Harrier

Montagu’s Harrier

Corn Crake

Spotted Crake

Common Crane


Little Ringed Plover

Black-tailed Godwit


Mediterranean Gull

Yellow-legged Gull

Little Tern

Roseate Tern

Turtle Dove

Long-eared Owl

Short-eared Owl

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker



Peregrine Falcon

Golden Oriole

Willow Tit

Bearded Tit


Marsh Warbler

Savi’s Warbler


Black Redstart

White Wagtail



Common Rosefinch


Rare UK non-native breeding birds in Yorkshire


Bar-headed Goose

Snow Goose

Black Swan

Helmeted Guinea-fowl

Golden Pheasant

Eagle Owl



A full list of the species considered by the Panel is on the RBBP website. Observers may, if they wish, submit records directly to the Panel Secretary, but the normal procedure is to send them in the first instance to the relevant Yorkshire Recorder who will forward them to the Panel. Panel reporting forms are available direct from the RBBP by post, the RBBP website, or the Report Editor/Yorkshire Recorders.


Please note that records should make clear the number(s) of confirmed, probable and/or possible breeding pairs. The definitions for these can be found here



Write to:


The Secretary, (Mark Eaton)

Rare Breeding Birds Panel,


e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Birds ~ Contacts and Recorders




Report Editor

Vacant. Contact: Geoff Dobbs

County Recorders:

East Yorkshire
Jacob Spinks


North Yorkshire

South Yorkshire
Martin Wells, S36 1DG Tel. 0114 2884211

West Yorkshire

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