Turtle Dove Surveyor

Keen surveyors willing to follow standardised survey methods during the dawn to 0900 survey period. Experience of Turtle Doves useful though not absolutely necessary.

Wednesday 31 March 2021
Vacancy type:
Practical conservation, Volunteering at home, Surveying wildlife
At home

What we're looking for

The Turtle Dove is one of the highest conservation priority species for the RSPB and is the fastest declining UK species. We lost 95% of our turtle doves between 1995 and 2018, and with low numbers, monitoring is becoming increasingly difficult. A national survey is needed to produce the robust population estimates, measures of change and maps of current distribution, needed to underpin our conservation work. County-level surveys will be conducted in a selected sample of 1km-squares across the known range. The survey period will be from mid May to the end of July, with two visits per 1km-square during this period. Surveys will be conducted on all suitable habitat within each, using a standard territory mapping method. The survey period is between dawn and 0900, after which vocal activity decreases markedly.

The skills you need

Keen surveyors willing to follow standardised survey methods during the dawn to 0900 survey period. Experience of Turtle Doves and other farmland birds is useful though not absolutely necessary. Some resources are available to help with identifying Turtle Doves by sight and sound, including identifying males, females and juveniles. Detailed survey instructions, forms and maps will be provided, with some initial training if needed.

Your time

Two early morning visits to selected 1km-squares (each visit should take no more than c2 hours).
April to July

What's in it for you?

Taking part in the first national survey of the UK's fastest decline bird species: the results of the survey will give us a comprehensive overview of the current size and distribution of the UK's remaining breeding turtle dove population. This will allow us to assess the progress of conservation work to date and help ensure that future conservation efforts are targeted to where they will have the greatest impact.

How to apply


Simon Wotton, UKHQ Conservation Science
Tel: 01767 680551
Email: simon.wotton@rspb.org.uk


This vacancy is only available across various locations in England, Kent surveys are being carried out via Kent Ornithilogical Society find out the available transects here https://national-turtle-dove-survey-RSPB.hub.arcgis.com/pages/take-part 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 9351