Managing habitats for wildlife
Advice on how to manage habitats for wildlife on your farm, from margins, banks and headlands to meadows, scrub land and buildings.
In this section
Arable field margins
Field margins, although generally the least productive areas of a field, can benefit wildlife in many ways.
Beetle banks are grass mounds about 2 metres wide that can boost predatory insect numbers that help pest control.
Conservation headlands have cereal crops that are selectively sprayed to let small numbers of weeds and insects grow.
Drainage channels can be important corridors that allow species to move through the countryside.
Extensively grazed grassland
Extensively grazed grassland creates a diverse sward structure, rich in plants and beneficial to birds.
Traditional farm buildings made from natural materials have the greatest wildlife value.
Field margins on grasslands
In grassland systems, grass and broad-leaved plants allowed to go to seed can be valuable to nesting birds and insects.
Gill and clough woodland
Sensitive management and replanting of woodland and scattered trees can benefit certain birds in the uplands.
The flower-rich hay meadow is now a rare and important habitat.
Nectar flower mixtures
Pollen and nectar mixtures provide plants throughout spring and summer to supply food for insects such as butterflies.
Over-wintered stubbles can be an easy way for you to provide seed food for birds through the winter.
Scrub is a natural part of other habitats, such as grassland and woodland, and an important component of the landscape.
Skylark numbers have declined on arable farmland with the decline in abundance of spring cereals.
Wild bird seed mixtures
Wild bird seed mixtures provide a vital food supply for seed-eating birds throughout the winter.