Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis, feeding from a garden feeder, Co. Durham,

The Schedules

Information on the schedules outlining laws relating to the treatment and protection of birds in the UK and internationally.

Schedule 1

Schedule 1 - Part I

Birds and their young, for which it is an offence to intentionally or recklessly disturb at, on or near an ‘active’ nest: 

  • Avocet 
  • Bee-eater 
  • Bittern 
  • Bittern, little 
  • Bluethroat 
  • Brambling 
  • Bunting, cirl  
  • Bunting, Lapland  
  • Bunting, snow  
  • Buzzard, honey 
  • Capercaillie (Scotland only) 
  • Chough  
  • Corncrake 
  • Crake, spotted 
  • Crossbills (all species)  
  • Divers (all species) 
  • Dotterel 
  • Duck, long-tailed 
  • Eagle, golden  
  • Eagle, white-tailed  
  • Falcon, gyr  
  • Fieldfare  
  • Firecrest  
  • Garganey 
  • Godwit, black-tailed 
  • Goshawk  
  • Grebe, black-necked 
  • Grebe, Slavonian 
  • Greenshank 
  • Gull, little 
  • Gull, Mediterranean 
  • Harriers (all species)  
  • Heron, purple 
  • Hobby  
  • Hoopoe 
  • Kingfisher 
  • Kite, red 
  • Merlin 
  • Oriole, golden 
  • Osprey 
  • Owl, barn 
  • Owl, snowy 
  • Peregrine 
  • Petrel, Leach's 
  • Phalarope, red-necked 
  • Plover, Kentish 
  • Plover, little ringed 
  • Quail, common 
  • Redstart, black 
  • Redwing 
  • Rosefinch, scarlet 
  • Ruff 
  • Sandpiper, green 
  • Sandpiper, purple 
  • Sandpiper, wood 
  • Scaup 
  • Scoter, common 
  • Scoter, velvet 
  • Serin 
  • Shorelark 
  • Shrike, red-backed 
  • Spoonbill 
  • Stilt, black-winged 
  • Stint, Temminck's 
  • Stone-curlew 
  • Swan, Bewick's 
  • Swan, whooper 
  • Tern, black 
  • Tern, little 
  • Tern, roseate 
  • Tit, bearded 
  • Tit, crested 
  • Treecreeper, short-toed 
  • Warbler, Cetti's 
  • Warbler, Dartford 
  • Warbler, marsh 
  • Warbler, Savi's 
  • Whimbrel 
  • Woodlark 
  • Wryneck

Schedule 1 - Part II

Birds afforded special protection during the close season which is 1 February to 31 August (21 February to 31 August below high water mark) but which may be killed or taken outside this period.

  • Goldeneye 
  • Pintail 
  • Greylag goose (in Outer Hebrides, Caithness, Sutherland and Wester Ross only).

Schedule 2

Schedule 2 - Part I

Birds protected during the close season (1 February to 31 August) but which may be killed or taken outside this period. Close season for ducks and geese when below high water mark is 21 February to 31 August.

  • Capercaillie - close season 1 February to 30 September (not Scotland) 
  • Coot 
  • Duck, tufted 
  • Gadwall 
  • Goldeneye 
  • Goose, Canada 
  • Goose, greylag 
  • Goose, pink-footed 
  • Goose, white-fronted (England and Wales only) 
  • Mallard 
  • Moorhen 
  • Pintail 
  • Plover, golden 
  • Pochard 
  • Shoveler 
  • Snipe, common (close season 1 February to 11 August) 
  • Teal 
  • Wigeon 
  • Woodcock (close season 1 February to 30 September except Scotland where 1 February to 31 August)
David Douglas (Conservation Scientist) heads up a team looking into the effects of a wind farm on Golden plover Pluvialis apricaria, Sutherland, Scotland

Schedule 3

Schedule 3 - Part I

Birds which may be sold alive at all times if fitted with an approved ring and bred in captivity.

  • Blackbird 
  • Brambling 
  • Bullfinch 
  • Bunting, reed 
  • Chaffinch 
  • Dunnock 
  • Goldfinch 
  • Greenfinch 
  • Jackdaw 
  • Jay 
  • Linnet 
  • Magpie 
  • Owl, barn 
  • Redpoll 
  • Siskin 
  • Starling 
  • Thrush, song 
  • Twite 
  • Yellowhammer

Schedule 3 - Part II

Birds which may be sold dead (at all times).

  • Woodpigeon

Schedule 3 - Part III

Birds which may be sold dead from 1 September to 28 February.

  • Capercaillie (not Scotland) 
  • Coot 
  • Duck, tufted 
  • Mallard 
  • Pintail 
  • Plover, golden 
  • Pochard 
  • Shoveler 
  • Snipe, common 
  • Teal 
  • Wigeon 
  • Woodcock
Blackbird Turdus merula, female, on garden fork handle

Schedule 4

Birds which must be ringed and registered with the government if they are kept in captivity.

  • Buzzard, honey
  • Eagle, golden
  • Eagle, white-tailed
  • Goshawk
  • Harrier, marsh
  • Harrier, Montagu's
  • Merlin
  • Osprey
  • Peregrine

How you can help

Poisoned bird of prey
Have you seen a crime against a wild bird? Use this form to report a wildlife crime to us.