Dance of the Curlew coasters

Sale price£19.95


Stunning, highly detailed coasters with a high gloss finish featuring Dance of the Curlew artwork by Sandy Gardner.

These four glorious coasters come in a gift box and will make a beautiful gift for a friend or family member.

Three of the four coasters fit together to create the full length artwork.

Included with your order:

  • Sandy Gardner Gift Box
  • Four curlew Coasters 9cm x 9cm / 3mm thick
  • WWT Dance of the Curlew story card

Plain hardboard back / Gloss finish / Wipe clean / Designed by Sandy Gardner, printed and made by UK artisans.

Matching Placemats sold separately

The Curlew Story

The curlew is now regarded as the most pressing bird conservation priority in the UK, where we hold a quarter of the world’s population. In the UK the number of breeding birds has dropped by about 65% since 1970.

To highlight the curlew's plight and aid conservation efforts, esteemed wildlife artist Sandy Gardner has created the beautiful artwork ‘Dance of the Curlew’. The artwork is available as a luxurious cotton scarf and print from WWT centres and the online store.

The Eurasian curlew Latin name is Numenius Arquata: Numenius meaning new moon alluding to the crescent shape of the bill. The cresent moon can be seen bottom right. Arquata is the Latin word for an archer’s bow akin to the shape of the curlew’s wing. The Archer / Sagittarius constellation can be seen top centre.

A pair of curlews called Cedric and Olive (named in honour of our Guide to the Morecambe Bay Sands and his wife) are seen in courtship. The birds, who pair for life, dance through a traditional hay meadow filled with British wild-flowers and grasses. This type of habitat offers an important haven for wildlife, including the curlew, but these meadows are under threat. Breeding curlews favour open, usually damp, grassland, meadows and heaths, which provide safe nest sites and places for both adults and their young to feed. Over recent decades, the land has become drier, more uniform and supports fewer insects, making it harder for curlews and their chicks to find food.

Curlew eggs and chicks are predated by mammals and birds including crows, magpies, foxes and badgers (seen in silhouette). This is a natural process, however this abundance of predation can be associated with changes in land-use and management. WWT are working closely with land owners and farmers, all keen to adapt and learn how to help the curlew flourish again.

As part of their Severn and Avon Vale project, WWT is testing an innovative process called headstarting. They take eggs from wild pairs, incubate the eggs and rear the young in aviaries, until they’re old enough to fly; then release them back into the wild. A total of 50 headstart curlews were released at WWT Slimbridge in July 2019. All of these birds have been fitted with a yellow ring at the top of the right leg and a white ring with a number at the top of the left leg, to make them easier to identify. In this artwork Olive is ringed with number 1 and Cedric number 50. If you see Cedric, Olive or any of the 50 headstart curlews, please let the WWT know the date, time, location, ring number and what they were up to. Are they feeding? Is it in a high tide roost? If you manage to capture a picture of the bird – even better.

I am honoured and delighted to have created this artwork for the WWT,

Sandy Gardner

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