FAQs

Is it OK to eat the Lapwing eggs?

We cannot condone eating the Lapwing eggs, which is why Save the Lapwing Eggs Organization promotes to protect and preserve the birds and their hatcheries. The local Lapwing birds found in Friesland have a population that is alarmingly decreasing.

Although the tradition is held only once a year, imagine the number of eggs taken from nests during the procession. Nevertheless, even during the non-cultural heritage season for Lapwing egg hunting, many locals are still in the loop to snatch an egg for consumption or whatnot.

It is for these reasons why the local fowls are slowly becoming extinct. If we learn to let these birds go on about their lives, not having to shoot the adults or hunt their eggs, then we help save their entire species from becoming history.

Are Lapwing birds decreasing in Europe?

Lapwing birds are usually found in Europe. They migrate in many different parts of the continent. Unfortunately, the birds’ population has shown a significant decrease over decades already.

According to The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), the decline in Lapwing population have been greatest in southern England and Wales, where the farming changes have been greatest and farmland is the only suitable habitat for the Lapwing. Between 1987 and 1998, Lapwing numbers dropped by 49 percent in England and Wales. Since 1960, the numbers dropped by 80 percent.

The birds have fared better in Scotland, where the crucial changes to farming were introduced later than in England and Wales. However, even there the numbers have dropped by 29 percent since 1987.

What is the survival rate of Lapwing chicks in Europe?

Egg survival and hatching success varies depending on the habitat and appears to have declined in some habitats over the past decade.

Main causes of nest failure are predation, agricultural activity, and desertion. While the birds often re-lay, changes in cropping practices often result in the habitat being unsuitable for replacement clutches because the vegetation has grown too tall, thus shortening the potential breeding season.

Only about 25-40 percent of chicks survive to fledgling. Most of the chick mortality occurs in the first few days after hatching, when chicks are most vulnerable to cold or wet weather, and when they may be undertaking hazardous journeys from nesting to feeding areas. The further chicks have to go, the lower their survival.

Once the birds have reached adulthood, they can expect to live a further 4-5 years. The oldest known individual was about 20 years. Lapwings normally breed one year after fledgling.

(Source: The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB))

How can I help to save the Lapwings from extinction?

According to the RSPB, “Lapwings have to fledge at least 0.6 young per pair each year to maintain the population. They usually can achieve this in rough grazing and unimproved pastures, but often not on arable land or improved grassland. Since the birds cannot produce enough chicks to offset the natural mortality of adults, population declines.”

There are many ways you can do to protect and preserve this species. You can browse our website to see our activities. You can join our organization as a volunteer. You can also use your talent in helping us voice out our platform.

To stop and reserve the decreasing lapwing population, you can try and disseminate sympathetic farming methods. This includes creating a mosaic of spring sown crops and grassland. It also involves managing grazing pressures and controlling damp areas on immature and unimproved grasslands.

Another way is to avoid participating in the annual Lapwing Egg Hunt tradition. If you know a loved one or friend who is a keen observer of this culture, keep him/her informed about the lapwing population situation. Educate and inspire. Spread the word about banning the hunting and collecting of lapwing eggs and help preserve the species.

What should I do if I see someone taking Lapwing eggs?

In Europe, only Friesland had the tradition of hunting Lapwing eggs annually and presenting them to the mayors or town authorities. But with the decline of the bird’s population, it is now banned in Friesland and to many other European countries and provinces.

Collecting northern lapwing eggs in Friesland province is banned. It is now considered illegal. The yearly tradition is put to a stop so as to preserve the sanctuary and growth of these birds.

However, even after lifting the ban, there are still locals who keep on stealing eggs from nests. If you caught someone getting lapwing eggs, report it immediately to the authorities. You can also inform the organization and we’ll help you handle the situation.

Can I keep and cage a Lapwing bird at home?

There is no law against caging a lapwing bird as a pet. However, we try to avoid caging birds as much as possible. Birds are flock-oriented. They preen each other, fly together, and share egg-incubation duties. There are birds meant to mate for life and share parenting tasks, and they seem to avoid finding a second mate.

Birds are meant to be free where they can soar up high. Taking animals from their natural habitats endangers them and puts their entire population and ecosystem at risk. While some people like the idea of having a pal fowl at home, it is not always fair for the bird. In fact, some birds bred in captivity don’t fare much better.

It is ideal to adore the birds from afar, where they are flying along with its flock.