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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Selection of forage species and the creation of alternative feeding areas for dark-bellied brent geese Branta bernicla bernicla in southern UK coastal areas.

Published source details

McKay H.V., Milsom T.P., Feare C.J., Ennis D.C., O'Connell D.P & Haskell D.J. (2001) Selection of forage species and the creation of alternative feeding areas for dark-bellied brent geese Branta bernicla bernicla in southern UK coastal areas. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, 84, 99-113


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

Provide 'sacrificial' grasslands to reduce the impact of wild geese on crops Farmland Conservation

A replicated study in the winters of 1992-1993 and 1993-1994 on an arable field on Thorney Island, West Sussex, England (McKay et al. 2001) found that dark-bellied brent geese Branta bernicla bernicla preferentially foraged on plots sown with white clover Trifolium repens, compared to three grass species (10-13 droppings/m2 for 12 clover plots vs 0-5 droppings/m2 for 36 grass plots). There were no differences between grass species (perennial rye grass Lolium perenne, red fescue Festuca rubra or timothy Phleum pratense). Plots were established in spring 1991 and preferences were found in both years, although more geese used grass plots in 1993-1994.