Effects of set-aside management on birds breeding in lowland Ireland

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Title: Effects of set-aside management on birds breeding in lowland Ireland
Authors: Bracken, Fintan
Bolger, Thomas
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/3619
Date: Nov-2006
Abstract: Farmland birds have suffered a severe decline in recent years throughout Europe including Ireland. Agricultural intensification is believed to be the main cause and this has led to the introduction of agri-environmental schemes, of which set-aside is a part. Bird abundance and diversity were compared between set-aside and adjacent tillage or grassland at 18 locations. The set-aside sites were also assigned to one of four management types: rotational set-aside, non-rotational set-aside, first year set-aside that was productive grassland in the previous year, and long-term set-aside that was grazed by animals in winter. Species diversity and the abundances of skylark, meadow pipit and woodpigeon were significantly greater in set-aside sites. Species diversity was not significantly different between set-aside management types and meadow pipit, skylark, pheasant, house sparrow, magpie, snipe and starling were closely associated with non-rotational set-aside, which also contained significantly larger numbers of these species compared to the other set-aside types. This study shows that set-aside does enhance bird diversity and abundance and that, in Ireland, the most effective form of set-aside is non-rotational. It also shows that the most appropriate form of set-aside will vary from situation to situation and that a one size fits all view should not be taken in the development of agri-environmental schemes.
Funding Details: Other funder
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright (published version): 2006 Elsevier
Keywords: BirdsSet-asideFarm managementAgri-environmental schemeRedundancy Analysis
Subject LCSH: Birds--Conservation
Farm management
Agriculture--Environmental aspects
Fallow lands--Environmental aspects
DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2006.03.032
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Biology & Environmental Science Research Collection

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