Scottish Natural Heritage's Trend Notes series are summaries based on research data relating to trends and changes in our natural heritage.

Key findings in the trend note on breeding farmland birds are:

  • Estimates of trends in abundance are presented at national and 100km square scale for ten species of birds that are strongly associated with farmland.
  • Four of the five wader species assessed (curlew, lapwing, oystercatcher and redshank) show significant declines, with only snipe showing an increase.
  • The farmland seed-eaters all show stable (skylark, yellowhammer) or increasing (linnet and tree sparrow) long-term trends. In the short term, only skylark has a decreasing trend.
  • Targeted management at an appropriate scale can benefit farmland birds. Past declines in corn bunting have been reversed, reflecting the success of targeted management for this species.

Read the Trend Note on the SNH website