Are you ready for the Big Farmland Bird Count?

The Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust is urging everyone to get ready for its Big Farmland Bird Count next month.

The annual initiative – now in its 10th year – is a simple way of measuring the effect of conservation schemes put in place by farmers and gamekeepers on their land and find out how birds are faring.

Typical schemes might include supplementary feeding or growing wild bird seed and game cover crops.

Chris Broughton from Somerset said: “Taking part in the GWCT Big Farmland Bird count is an easy way to provide the GWCT with information relating to the benefits of shooting estate management, it also provides a great excuse to stop and really look at what you have on your patch, record it, and then make plans to improve. Probably one of the most enjoyable and beneficial half hours of the year.”

Additionally, at the end of the count, everyone who participates will receive a report on the national count results, with insightful comparisons to previous years’ bird populations.

Among the birds you might expect to see are yellowhammers, corn buntings, grey and red-legged partridges, lapwings and skylarks.

If you want to take part between February 3rd and 19th, visit for all the details and download the count sheet.

Then decide where you will do your survey, ideally from a spot where you can see around 2ha of land. Simply count and record the birds you see (species and maximum number) in a half-hour period then submit your results online.