Centre for Conservation Science
We do this by identifying the most important problems, discovering their possible causes, testing potential solutions to those causes and ensuring that they work when implemented. We work both throughout the UK and overseas alongside a wide range of funders and partners.
What we do
We identify species of greatest conservation concern from surveys and monitoring. Subsequent research often aims to identify causes of population declines and test potential solutions.
Our research in upland systems focuses on understanding the changes in bird populations and their habitats.
To address continuing agricultural change and the pressures it places on wildlife, we operate a large and varied research and monitoring programme across all types of UK farmland.
Meet the team
Using science to find practical solutions to the most pressing conservation problems
Working with us
Conservation Science Awards
The RSPBs three annual awards to recognise and celebrate excellence in conservation science.
The State of the UK's Birds
Latest blog posts
World lizard day: Saving the iconic Iguana Islands of the Turks and Caicos
Blog by Sarah Havery, RSPB International Species Recovery Officer Iguana Island: One of the last remaining strongholds of the Turks and Caicos rock iguana. Only accessible by boat, to get here you meander across a turquoise blue channel with the occa...Posted 14/08/2019 by Chiara Ceci
Catching fish, not seabirds
Blog by: Dr Euan Dunn, RSPB Principal Policy Officer After months of negotiations in Brussels, today sees the entry into force of a vital lifeline for European seabirds (as well as marine mammals and turtles) that are killed and injured by coming int...Posted 14/08/2019 by Chiara Ceci
Does seeded ryegrass fill the late-winter "hungry gap" for yellowhammers?
Blog by Dr Ian Johnstone, Senior Conservation Scientist, RSPB Centre for Conservation Science Yellowhammers are strikingly coloured buntings that nest in well-grown hedgerows and shrubby habitats, and winter where they can find seed food, often in ar...Posted 08/08/2019 by Chiara Ceci
Cryptic species of storm-petrels uncovered using DNA sequencing
Guest blog post by Dr Rebecca Taylor, Postdoctoral Fellow, Trent University, Canada. “What is a species?” is undeniably one of the most complex questions in biology. As humans are a visual species, we tend to name other species based on the way they ...Posted 01/08/2019 by Chiara Ceci
The State of Nature in the UK and its Overseas Territories. PDF, 8.3MbState of Nature 2016
The SUKB report, is a one-stop shop for all the latest results from annual, periodic and one-off surveys and monitoring programmes. PDF, 2.5MbState of the UK's birds 2016
The annual report of the Wetland Bird Survey. PDF, 5MbWaterbirds in the UK 2014-2015
This case study focuses on the evidence available in support of the RSPB's position on renewables. PDF, 542KbCase study no 15: Renewable energy and conservation science
Part of a collection that aims to highlight RSPB science from the last decade. PDF, 389KbCase study no 16: Climate change research
Understanding woodland bird declines. PDF, 392KbCase Study No. 17: Can not see the wood for the trees!
The UK's leading bird conservation organisations have worked together to review the status of birds in the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man. PDF, 1.7MbBird of conservation concern 4
How are we doing?
We've been making changes and we'd love to know what you think.