The agronomic consequences and costs of managing field margins for game and wildlife conservation.
A system of field margin management is described whereby pesticide use is modified over the outer 6 metres of cereal crops, to allow survival of certain broadleaved weed species and their associated insects. These field margins, known as ' 'conservation headlands", are beneficial to many forms of wildlife, including gamebirds, butterflies and other insects, and declining agrestal plant species.
The agricultural consequences of implementing such a management programme may include effects on grain yield, quality, moisture content, weed seed contamination and harvesting. Evidence for the magnitude of these effects is presented and used as the basis for an analysis of the potential costs of the technique.