RESIDENTS and visitors to the county are being advised to give shore birds some space to ensure their survival.

East Lothian Council Countryside Rangers have warned the public that shore birds need all of their time to feed, preen and rest in order to survive the winter and that being disturbed can harm their chances of survival.

The rangers have encouraged members of the public to give the birds 40-50m space and to ensure that dogs do not disturb them.

The rangers said that giving the birds space was essential to their survival.

A spokesperson for the countryside rangers said: “Giving birds 40-50m of space is usually enough to ensure that you, or your dog, don’t disturb them.

“If they fly off then you’ve got too close, and this is what we don’t want to happen.

“Birds being repeatedly disturbed means they are losing precious feeding time and wasting energy flying away.

“This can harm them and reduce their chances of survival, and ultimately will reduce their populations.

“Giving them a bit of space can make a huge difference.”