Farmland Bird Surveyor

Wednesday 25 January 2017
Vacancy type:
Practical conservation, Volunteering at home, Surveying wildlife
South and West Scotland Regional Office

What we're looking for

In recent decades populations of many bird species associated with farmland habitats have experienced worrying declines. The RSPB is working with partner organisations and the farming community to try to halt this decline. Working through the Dumfries and Galloway Farmland Bird Group (RSPB, SNH, D&G Council), we are directing our survey effort for farmland birds into areas where we would like to develop initiatives for tree sparrow and breeding waders. This project allies the enthusiasm of RSPB volunteers with the willingness of farmers who are interested in doing more for the birds and nature on their farms.

The skills you need

Essential: 1) Able to identify all common bird species and especially farmland birds by sight and sound. 2) Able to walk several km. over potentially rough ground. 3) Able to read large-scale maps. 4) Able to deal directly with farmers/landowners in a polite and friendly manner. 5) Commit to make an initial visit to your survey tetrad and subsequently carry out 3 or 4 early morning surveys, between mid-April and mid-July. 6) Able to organise own travel to and from survey site. 7) Ability to keep data confidential. Desirable: Knowledge and experience of territory mapping using standard symbols, previous bird survey experience would be an advantage although a training manual detailing the survey methodology will be given.

Your time

Carry out 4 early morning surveys during the breeding season
April to July

What's in it for you?

A chance to assist the RSPB with high priority work. Good opportunity to improve bird identification skills, increase knowledge of farmland bird ecology and learn more about farming. A training manual is given and support is available throughout the survey season. You may have the opportunity to observe birds on land where there is no public access. The RSPB is an active and exciting conservation charity, the largest in Europe! We can help you gain skills and give you a valuable insight into our work.

How to apply


Katherine Berry, SHQ, Conservation Management
Tel: 0131 317 4100


This vacancy is only available in Dumfries and Galloway. We will reimburse you for out of pocket travel expenses and provide you with ongoing support in your role. The RSPB is the UK charity working to secure a healthy environment for birds and wildlife, helping to create a better world for all of us. We belong to BirdLife International, the global partnership of bird conservation organisations. Your time and skills could make a real difference to the work of the RSPB and it would be great if you could join us.

Reference number 8185