Friday, 11 May 2012

Arable Bird Survey

Today I managed to fit in a couple of hours walking round one of our survey areas on the farm with John Clarke. John has been helping me with our bird surveys since 2004 and we try and walk set routes three times a year to monitor and record the bird species that we find. Today the skylarks were out in great numbers singing like mad while hovering, seemingly effortlessly, in the sky, even on a chilly windy morning. It was a real pleasure to actually see the benefits of the conservation work we are doing coming to reality. There were skylarks on our creation of species rich grassland areas, landing in and taking off from the skylark plots (good news really) and also using the unplanted nesting plots to land on and scurry into the crop for cover. In total we spotted over 20 breeding pairs on their territories, while walking the small survey area. Great news and hopefully a good sign to come for our Higher Level stewardship surveys later in the year. We weren't just just skylark spotting we also spotted Brown hares (4), fallow deer (40 -eating my wheat!) wheatears (2), pipit's (6) and Linnets (12), all good as some of these are BAP species.
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