Lapwing Vanellus vanellus, amongst grass

Red Alert

  • 1 in 4

    UK birds are now on the Red List of Conservation Concern
  • 67

    Red Listed bird species need help
  • 5 years

    Join our five-year goal is to give these birds a future

Save our birds

Did you know that 1 in 4 UK birds are now on the Red List of Conservation Concern?

More birds than ever before now appear on the Birds of Conservation Concern Red List, meaning they need urgent conservation action. And worse still, some of these - our puffins, turtle doves, pochards and Slavonian grebes - are fighting global extinction. 

This is an emergency for bird life in the UK. But our 67 Red Listed birds are not beyond hope. Together, with your support, we can turn their fortunes around.

Blue wood texture background

Just £5 a month can help reshape the future for Red Listed birds by supporting RSPB projects across the UK.

What we'll be doing

The clock is now ticking. The Birds of Conservation Concern’s Red List is set to be updated in four years’ time. This is the deadline we’ve set ourselves.

Conservation takes a long time, and while four years won’t be enough to change the status of all 67 species, we could start to get some of our best-loved birds back on track.

Projects across the UK are already helping some of the 67. But we need funding from nature-loving people like yourself to ensure these projects continue, and to make even more possible. 

You can help elusive ring ouzels that live in wild mountain and moorland areas. For too long, little was known about these mysterious birds, but the RSPB is now at the forefront of their research. We’ve found that they need a mix of habitats, with tall heather to hide their chicks from crows and foxes, and shorter grassy areas where they can collect earthworms to feed them.

With your regular gift, we can test these habitats at our Geltsdale and Dove Stone reserves to try and revitalise our ravaged ring ouzel populations.

 Male Ring Ouzel, Turdus torquatus. Cairngorms National Park, Scotland

Success stories

With your dedication and support, we believe that our precious birds can be saved. But time is running out and we must act now. Here are two of our success stories.

Bitterns are booming!

It’s thanks to you that bitterns are now booming, even after habitat loss and hunting led to their extinction in the 1870s. Old reedbeds were restored and new ones created to give our bitterns the best chance to flourish. And now, we’re delighted to say that their populations are at their highest level for 200 years, with RSPB reserves home to at least half of these brilliant birds.

Avocets are thriving

Avocet turning eggs on nest Having disappeared from the UK during the 19th century, the avocet’s return in the 1940s and subsequent increase in numbers is one of our most successful – and motivational – conservation projects. At RSPB reserves across the UK, you’ve helped to create and maintain the rare habitat of shallow pools and muddy islands that avocets need to live, feed and breed safely. Now, these havens support around half of the UK’s avocets.

Bittern Botaurus stellaris, gliding across a reed bed, Suffolk,
Avocet close-up of head with check at nest.
Avocet and chicks

Some of the birds you'll be helping

A donation from you can help us reshape the future of these species.


Puffins are iconic the world over, and one of our best-loved seabirds. It’s truly devastating that they’re now in danger of global extinction. Your £5 a month could crucially help to turn the tide for our suffering puffins.


Today, lapwings are in real danger of being lost. Due to the degradation of their precious wetland habitats, 4 out of 10 of our lapwings were lost between 1995 and 2012. Your regular gift will help revitalise wet grassland habitats for priority species like the lapwing

Lesser spotted woodpecker

Distressingly, the tell-tale drumming of these special little birds has diminished from our woodland landscape, following devastating 82% declines since 1970. Your £5 a month could help revitalise and reconnect native broadleaved woodland across England and Wales for lesser spotted woodpeckers.

Slavonian grebe

Sadly, the Slavonian grebe’s beauty is only matched by its rarity. Just last year, we recorded only 28 pairs of this spectacular bird. Your regular donation will support the management of Loch Ruthven, a key breeding location for Slavonian grebes

Puffin with sand eels in beak
 Lapwing Vanellus vanellus, amongst grass
Male lesser-spotted woodpecker
Lesser spotted woodpecker
Slavonian grebe
Slavonian grebe