14 May 2024

NESBReC reaches 2 million records of species

The North East Scotland Biological Records Centre (NESBReC) has now recorded more than two million sightings of various species within its database of biodiversity information. 

NESBReC is part of Aberdeenshire Council’s Environment & Sustainability Service. By collating and managing biological information it supports the North East Scotland Biodiversity Partnership and acts as a local node for the National Biodiversity Network. 

The species data provides support for education and conservation bodies, national recording schemes and the wider community to assist with land use planning, conservation, site management, and research. 

Of all the sightings of species recorded on NESBReC’s database—covering Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen City, Angus, Moray, and the Cairngorms National Park—it was the Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus Schoenobaenus) that became the two millionth. 

Recorded at the Ythan Estuary, the Sedge Warbler is often heard before it is seen. Its song can be described as loud, rambling, scratchy, and heard from reedbeds in spring and early summer. 

Sedge Warblers travel great distances to summer in Scotland, between April and September, and spend their winters in Africa, south of the Sahara. 

Councillor Alan Turner, chair of the council’s Infrastructure Services Committee (ISC), said: “This is a fantastic milestone in NESBReC’s work that helps us all to better understand the biodiversity of our area. Given its size and scope, it has become a truly valuable database for the North East of Scotland and one that empowers decisions with the best available knowledge.” 

ISC vice chair Councillor Isobel Davidson said: “Far reaching and informative databases such as NESBReC’s are created with wide support from other organisations and, importantly, residents of Aberdeenshire. Thank you to everyone who has contributed to this amazing resource, and I hope to see the records continue to grow in number for many years to come.” 

Anyone can record wildlife for NESBReC’s database and there is no need for it to be a rare or uncommon species. For example, hedgehogs and common toads are two species that are familiar to everyone but are experiencing declines in their population, making their continued sightings important information to record. 

Wildlife records are maintained by NESBReC, part of Aberdeenshire Council. NESBREC depends on the financial support from a range of organisations, including public bodies, local authorities, and conservation charities who currently include Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City Councils, NatureScot, Scottish Forestry, and Cairngorms National Park Authority. 

Visit to learn more about NESBReC or to submit a record. 

You can submit a record via the NESBReC’s online form or by sending a simple email to with details of what you have seen, where you have seen it and when.  

Photo of a Sedge Warbler by Ron MacDonald. 


A Sedge Warbler