BFBC success inspires Austrian farmers

By Graham Hartwell, Environmental Stewardship Manager, BASF plc, Crop Protection

The 4th Big Farmland Bird Count is nearly here; our aim is to encourage even more farmers to actively record the farmland birds on their farms and to talk about the success that they have had from their considered management techniques and improved habitats on farm. As a result of farmer’s work, we all have the opportunity and delight of seeing and hearing farmland birds in the farmed landscape; this is testament to those who care for the land and farm accordingly.  

BASF are delighted that we continue to actively support BFBC in its efforts to record the good works that so many farmers carry out on their farms in their role of food-producing guardians of the land and to help extend this knowledge to a much wider audience. This whole farm approach to sustainability is fundamental to a successful agriculture. 

Reed Bunting www.lauriecampbell.com

That increasing numbers of BFBC identification training days are available - for the third year running - at more locations, attracting more farmers to take part in BFBC and enabling them to record more farmland birds over more acres is a powerful message to take to the agricultural industry and general public. It is efforts such as this that help improve farmer understanding and can result in farm management systems that can deliver a more sustainable agriculture 

So much of the BFBC success is due to the enthusiasm and inspiration of the many trainers and experts that work with BFBC partnership to share knowledge, ideas and techniques to make identification and recording of bird numbers simpler. Improvements this year have been made to recording system so that farmers can now see all their records from previous years and look for changing bird numbers. In addition to this there will be access to a range of facts sheets and simple tips and hints for improving bird number in preparation of the 2018 count! 

Austrian ID Day

As more farmers join, the success and influence of the BFBC grows. We are delighted that the concept has been taken this year to a regular BFBC contributor at a site in Austria; at the request of Count Hardegg who will host a BFBC training day in late January on his estate for a group of local Austrian farmers.

Support for Count Hardegg’s event has been enthusiastically taken up by colleagues at BASF SE in Germany to reinforce the support of BASF plc and opens up the opportunity for the extension of BFBC to a wider European farmer and public audience. Let’s join together to make this the first great post-BREXIT export!  

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