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Common Agricultural Policy
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Stepping Up for Nature
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LIFE under the spotlight
What do you get if you mix an enthusiastic and dedicated bunch of farmers, volunteers and RSPB staff and stick them in front of an international audience from across the agriculture sector for a day? Lots of interesting discussions, real insight to the value of our farmland conservation work and plenty...
3 Dec 2012
Hope Farm Yields: crops and birds
August is really the end of the farming year as the final crops are harvested, here at least, and also marks the end of the breeding season. So it seems a good time to do a round-up of how our harvest went and how our breeding birds fared. Both the crops and the wildlife on the farm are heavily influenced...
26 Sep 2012
What is the West Country?
If, like me, you’re not from round ‘ere, then maybe it’s cream teas, ice creams on the beach, the wilds of Dartmoor, or rolling green hills. If you are “south westerly” then you probably have a very different opinion! Actually, for me, and RSPB, the West Country is Cornwall...
30 May 2012
A farmland bird spectacle in Derbyshire
I was asked if I could do a bird survey on a farm to support a Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) application and could not turn down the opportunity to nosey around a part of Derbyshire that I knew little about. So it was a very early start on Saturday to travel up to a hill farm on the edge of the Peak...
30 Apr 2012
Weathering the weather
By Derek Gruar, Senior Researcher, Hope Farm One of the core tasks here at Hope Farm is monitoring the numbers of birds that are actually using the farm. In summer this requires walking the farm boundaries and recording birds that are seen and heard onto maps. Compared to winter this is straight...
18 Jan 2012
Turtle doves are now the UK’s most threatened farmland bird, according to new official figures
The latest UK Wild Bird Indicators, published by Defra, the RSPB and the BTO, were released yesterday. The data covers farmland, woodland, wetland and sea birds, and worryingly shows turtle dove populations fell 21 percent between 2009 and 2010. It's not a straightforward issue - as migratory...
1 Dec 2011
Summer screams out and Autumn flocks in
Last V&FA Diary of the year: Surveyor – Marcus Nash – North Norfolk , 31st July 2011 I have cut this right to the wire, but I just manage to squeeze in a fourth survey on the farm in the village. Finally, we are getting some warm, dry weather. Sunrise is 5.22am, so the sun has just...
9 Aug 2011
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