Stuck for a new year’s resolution? Count partridges
One of the world’s longest-running wildlife monitoring schemes needs your help in 2018! The Partridge Count Scheme (PCS), led by the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), is a project that aims to conserve the grey partridge and has been in action since 1933.
The count, which currently has 15 regional groups, collects information on the annual numbers and breeding success of grey partridges, offering valuable insight into how well your partridges breed.
As part of the PCS, your hard work contributes to a better understanding of how partridges are faring nationally. Undergoing a steep decline since the 1960s, grey partridge populations have been affected by wet summers, low chick survival and low winter survival rates. However, farmers, land managers and gamekeepers can help by providing the right habitats, food sources and cover to minimise loss to predation. PCS sites show a slow increase in abundance of grey partridge since 2001. GWCT scientist, Neville Kingdon is urging farmers, gamekeepers and land managers to take part in the upcoming spring count. “This is the time when we need you to log details of the numbers you have on your land,” said Neville. “Management for grey partridges has additional benefits, with increases in arable flora, farmland birds and other wildlife all possible.”