Picture above: A yellowhammer pictured on farm during the 2018 Big Farmland Bird Count
Whether it's helping birds get through the winter months by putting down seed or establishing woodlands and hedgerows to create habitat for birds and wildlife, British farmers work hard to protect our winged friends.
The Big Farmland Bird Count
The Big Farmland Bird Count was launched in 2014 to record the effect of conservation work instigated by farmers and gamekeepers on their land. Organised by the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), it is sponsored by the NFU and delivered in partnership with the Farming & Wildlife Advisory Group Association and LEAF with further support from the NFU, CLA, Perdix and Kings.
2020 saw a record-breaking number of farmers take part in the count. 1,500 people - 100 more than in 2019 - recorded over 120 species across 1.4 million acres. The most commonly seen species woodpigeons, starlings, lapwings, black-headed gulls and rooks.
Encouragingly, a total of 25 red-listed species were recorded, with 9 appearing in the most-commonly seen species list. Fieldfares, starlings, house sparrows, linnets and lapwings, were the four most abundant red-listed species recorded.
- 1,500 farmers took part- more than ever before.
- More than 120 species were recorded across 1.4 million acres
- 25 red-listed species were seen, with 9 appearing in the 25 most commonly seen species list.
- 49% of participants are in some form of agri-environment scheme, demonstrating their long-term commitment to environmental management.
- 36% of participants were providing some form of extra seed feed for birds, either through growing wild bird seed mixes, or by providing additional grain through scatter feeding or via hoppers.