WWT's monitoring data
We have a wealth of information on species from water voles to whimbrels, but how do we judge which needs conservation action and which just needs keeping an eye on?
A line has to be drawn somewhere and species allocated to categories based on the threats they face.
The setting of priorities is a skill in itself. Only experience and knowledge will tell you whether the decline you see is a natural blip or a looming disaster.
The longer we monitor, the better the picture we get and the better decisions we make.
Grouping species together under broad headings has another benefit: it distils all the research into simple indicators that pretty much anyone can understand. For example, red, amber, green.
WWT’s monitoring data are assessed as part of The State of the UK’s Birds, Birds of Conservation Concern and other avian population assessments.
The State of the UK’s Birds is an annual overview of the fortunes of wild birds in the United Kingdom and its Overseas Territories.
It draws together the most recent data from a range of sources, including WWT’s monitoring work, and summarises the most important results from these annual, periodic and one-off surveys.
The report uses these data to generate trends and produce indicators based upon them for the UK’s breeding and wintering birds.
Click here to download the latest SUKB report (issued November 2012)
Birds of Conservation Concern
Birds of Conservation Concern brings together the UK's leading governmental and non-governmental conservation organisations, including WWT, to assess the population status of birds in the UK.
The current review places 246 of the UK’s regularly occurring bird species onto one of three lists: red, amber or green, indicating their priority when allocating resources for conservation action.
On the red list are those species that are globally threatened, whose population or range has declined rapidly in recent years (i.e. by more than 50% in 25 years), or which have declined historically and not recovered.
On the amber list are species whose population or range has declined moderately in recent years (by more than 25% but less than 50% in 25 years), those whose population has declined historically but recovered recently, rare species (<300 breeding pairs or <900 wintering individuals), those with internationally important populations in the UK, those with localised populations, and those with an unfavourable conservation status in Europe.
Species that meet none of these criteria are green-listed. The full list of criteria can be found in the report.
Click here to download the latest Birds of Conservation Concern report