Corn bunting recovery work in north and east Scotland - Farmland Bird Lifeline (FBL)
The corn bunting is one of Scotland's fastest-declining birds. Around 1000 territorial males remain and several local extinctions have occurred in the last decade
- to highlight the plight of the corn bunting and demonstrate the best package of options to benefit the species during the summer and winter
- to demonstrate how targeted management options for corn buntings can be successfully integrated into commercial operations and delivered through agri-environment schemes
- to trial new seed mixes to expand the benefits of unharvested crops to pollinators as well as farmland birds
- 63 territories recorded on 12 farms in Angus and Fife, compared with 77 in 2013
- 113 territories recorded on six sites in Aberdeenshire, compared with 103 in 2013 (61 per cent of territories on two study farms centred on late-cut grass, specifically managed for corn buntings).
- 48 per cent of territorial males associated with spring barley followed by 26 per cent with winter cereal, 15.6 per cent with brassicas and vegetables (including potatoes and peas), 4 per cent with grassland, 3.6 per cent with Farmland Bird Lifeline (FBL) cover crops, 2 per cent with rough ground and 0.8 per cent with oilseed rape
- The number of males associating with FBL crops was disproportionately large considering the small area occupied by these habitats.