news, features, articles and disease information for the crop industry


RSPB and Farmers Launch Conservation Project

05 January 2012

UK - An ambitious new landscape-scale conservation project aimed at tailor-managing arable farmland across a large area is being launched this week at the Oxford Farming Conference.

Working with a group of 14 neighbouring farmers around a village in Cambridgeshire, the RSPB has established the Thorney Farmland Bird Friendly Zone for the benefit of farmland birds and other wildlife.

The initiative is centred on the village of Thorney near Peterborough where nature-friendly farmers who manage 3,782 hectares of surrounding farmland have come together.

The 14 farmers are stepping up for nature by selecting key Entry Level and Higher Level Environmental Stewardship Scheme land management options, such as unharvested crops to feed birds over the winter, fallows and skylark plots providing in-field nesting habitat, and nectar rich plots supplying insect rich areas.

Martin Harper, the RSPB’s conservation director, said: “For many years, we have worked on individual farms across the UK, but for the first time, this project has a mixture of local farmers to deliver and provide a strong wildlife identity to an area."

Gary Cade of SKG Farms Ltd, one of the farmers involved in the project, is actively promoting the work to other farmers and the local community. He said: “The Thorney Farmland Bird Friendly Zone has the ability to bring the public and farming together to demonstrate how modern productive agriculture can go hand in hand with protecting and enhancing farm wildlife.”

TheCropSite News Desk

Our Sponsors


Seasonal Picks

Country Dance