Conservation Evidence strives to be as useful to conservationists as possible. Please take our survey to help the team improve our resource.

Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Skylark plots hold more Eurasian skylarks Alauda arvensis and lead to population increases in arable farms in the UK

Published source details

Donald P.F. & Morris T.J. (2005) Saving the sky lark: new solutions for a declining farmland bird. British Birds, 98, 570-578


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Create skylark plots Farmland Conservation

A before-and-after study from 2000 to 2005 in Cambridgeshire, England (Donald & Morris 2005), found that the population of Eurasian skylarks Alauda arvensis on an arable farm increased from 10 territorial males in 2000 to 34 in 2005, following the introduction of skylark plots in 2001 (in addition to 6 m margins around fields and set-aside). Nests were also aggregated in fields with skylark plots. The study also reports that fields on 15 experimental farms with skylark plots had 30% more skylarks than control fields. In addition, nests in fields with skylark plots produced 0.5 more chicks/breeding attempt. Skylark plots 4 x 4 m were established at a density of 2 plots/ha. This study was part of the SAFFIE – Sustainable Arable Farming For an Improved Environment research project.

Create skylark plots for bird conservation Bird Conservation

A before-and-after study in Cambridgeshire, England (Donald & Morris 2005), found that the population of Eurasian skylarks on an arable farm increased from 10 territorial males in 2000 to 34 in 2005, following the use of skylark plots from 2001 (in addition to 6 m margins around fields and set-aside). Nests were also aggregated in fields with skylark plots. The study also reports that fields on 15 experimental farms with skylark plots held 30% more skylarks than control fields. In addition, nests in fields with plots produced 0.5 more chicks/breeding attempt.