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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: Mark bird nests during harvest or mowing Farmland Conservation

Key messages

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Supporting evidence from individual studies


A replicated study in 2005-2006 on arable farms in Noordoostpolder and Oostelijk Flevoland, the Netherlands (Kragten et al. 2008) found that marked northern lapwing Vanellus vanellus nests were significantly less likely to fail as a result of farming operations than unmarked nests (0-9% of 1,644 marked nests destroyed vs 15-42% of 229 unmarked nests). However, overall survival rates did not differ significantly (37-73% success for marked nests vs 38-66% for unmarked), with some evidence that marked nests were deserted or predated more often. Nests on the marked farms (121 in 2005, 113 in 2006) were marked with two bamboo poles (1 m high) by 151-171 volunteers, and farmers told of their presence. On the control farms, no markers were put in place and farmers were not informed of the nests.


Referenced papers

Please cite as:

Dicks, L.V., Ashpole, J.E., Dänhardt, J., James, K., Jönsson, A., Randall, N., Showler, D.A., Smith, R.K., Turpie, S., Williams D.R. & Sutherland, W.J. (2019) Farmland Conservation Pages 291-330 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2019. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK.