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LM0301: Reducing the impacts of predation on breeding waders using landscape-scale habitat management (RP02991)

A Defra funded project to review whether the management of water and grassland structure within landscapes can reduce the impacts of predators on breeding waders.

Project details

Start date2013-04-01
End date2016-03-31

Project outputs

This project produced the following outputs:

Final report and summaryDefra publication

Closing statement

The main findings of this study are that wader nest predation rates and spatial patterns of nest predation are remarkably similar on reserves and in the wider countryside. This suggests that the landscape management approaches that have potential to reduce predation pressure on reserve populations are also likely to benefit wider countryside populations. This presents potential opportunities to ‘design’ wader landscapes that provide the high quality habitats that promote colonisation by breeding waders and reduced levels of nest predation, within the constraints of commercially productive grasslands and livestock management. In particular:

  • Targeting existing established colonies is likely to be most effective at reducing predator impact.
  • Breeding wader options should focus on areas that have the potential to attract and maintain larger populations.
  • It would be helpful to test the theory that tall vegetation on site verges could reduce predation rates.