The Committee has reviewed the list of species and subspecies requiring descriptions and, with one minor exception, has decided not to make any changes to the list at this juncture. We have decided that with effect from 1 January 1997, records of Black-throated Diver Gavia arctica seen at Ballyvaughan, Donegal Bay, Strangford Lough and the south Wexford coast will no longer require descriptions. The species has not been dropped entirely from the rarities list because it remains very rare away from these regular sites.
The IRBC will write to all local recorders to improve the links with them and to ensure that species removed from the rarities list are satisfactorily assessed at local level where this is warranted. If this approach is successful, it may be possible to remove more species and/or subspecies from the rarities list at a later stage. Any observer who would like a copy of the rarities list should contact the Secretary.