Identifying problems

The RSPB invests considerable resources in monitoring species and sites across the UK and further afield each year.
 Using radio tracking equipment, as part of an investigation by RSPB scientists and local ringers into the decline in population of the Hawfinch Coccothraustes coccothraustes, South Wales

Overview

This programme of surveys underpins much of our conservation work and is vital in defining priority action for species, and in measuring the success or failure of these.

Monitoring varies from a single species to many species, from a single site to landscapes, countries and continents and from annual counts to those repeated at fixed intervals of years.

Sound monitoring information lies at the heart of our evidence-led approach to conservation. Results are often synthesised into overview reports, red lists and indicators, giving a measure of the wider health of the natural world.

The overall purpose of our monitoring work is to provide scientific information to underpin, review and steer the RSPB’s conservation objectives.

Our monitoring work is often carried out in partnership with organisations with complementary interests and expertise. We work closely with a range of NGOs and the Statutory Conservation Agencies. There are a whole range of benefits to working in partnership.

Much of our monitoring is UK-based, but we are increasingly working overseas, in Europe, RSPB focal countries and the UK’s Overseas Territories. 

Who's involved

Coast on a stormy day

Dr Mark Eaton

Principal Conservation Scientist, Conservation Science

mark.eaton@rspb.org.uk
Coast on a stormy day

Nigel Butcher

Senior Technical Officer, Conservation Science

nigel.butcher@rspb.org.uk
Coast on a stormy day

Prof Richard Gregory

Head of Species Monitoring and Research, Conservation Science

richard.gregory@rspb.org.uk
Coast on a stormy day

Dr Steffen Oppel

Senior Conservation Scientist, Conservation Science

steffen.oppel@rspb.org.uk

Related publications

A horizon scan of global conservation issues for 2015

This paper presents the results of our sixth annual horizon scan, which aims to identify phenomena that may have substantial effects on the global environment, but are not widely known or well understood. A group of professional horizon scanners....

RSPB Authors
Dr David Gibbons
Authors
Sutherland, W.J., Clout, M., Depledge, M., Dicks, L.V., Dinsdale, J., Entwistle, A.C., Fleishman, E., Gibbons, D.W., Keim, B., Lickorish, F.A., Monk, K.A., Ockendon, N., Peck, L.S., Pretty, J., Rockstrom, J., Spalding, M.S., Tonneijck, F.H. and Wintle, B.C.
Published in
Trends in Ecology & evolution
View publication Details
International Identifying problems

The decline of Afro-Palaearctic migrants and an assessment of potential causes

There is compelling evidence that Afro-Palaearctic (A-P) migrant bird populations have declined in Europe in recent decades, often to a greater degree than resident or short-distance migrants. There a...

Date
01 January 2014
RSPB Authors
Dr Juliet Vickery, Dr Steven Ewing, Prof Richard Gregory
Authors
Vickery, Juliet A. and colleagues
Published in
Ibis
View publication Details
International Identifying problems International species

The potential ecological impact of ash dieback in the UK

Ash is a common woodland, hedgerow, park and garden tree throughout the UK. The arrival of the disease ash dieback within the UK may result in the death of a large proportion of British ash trees. If ash dieback does lead to widespread death ...

Date
01 January 2014
RSPB Authors
Paul Bellamy
Authors
Mitchell, R. J., Bailey, S., Beaton, J. K., Bellamy, P. E., Brooker, R. W., Broome, A., Chetcuti, J., Eaton, S., Ellis, C. J., Farren, J., Gimona, A., Goldberg, E., Hall, J., Harmer, R., Hester, A. J., Hewison, R. L., Hodgetts, N. G., Hooper, R. J., Howe, L., Iason, G. R., Kerr, G., Littlewood, N. A., Morgan, V., Newey, S., Potts, J. M., Pozsgai, G., Ray, D., Sim, D. A., Stockan, J. A., Taylor, A. F. S., Woodward, S.
View publication Details
UK Identifying problems UK species

Projects