Reversing the decline in farmland bird populations is a targeted outcome of ES, and will remain a key priority for its successor Countryside Stewardship. This project covers three modules of work to evaluate the effectiveness of ES as a delivery mechanism for farmland birds. They are:
- assessing the effects of ES management on farmland bird populations across England up to summer 2013 using national BBS data,
- quantifying the effectiveness of the ES options EF23 and HF24, and
- assessing the role corvids and woodpigeon in limiting the utility of wild bird seed mixtures for target seed -eating bird species.
This project produced the following outputs:
Further scheme development and monitoring are needed if environmental land management schemes are to benefit key species in the future, because the benefits depend upon the details of the management employed and many population responses remain unpredictable. The findings show that we should continue to focus AES in areas of priority bird populations and we need to devise ways of protecting and buffering options against extreme weather and habitat deterioration