Monitoring gamebird abundance and productivity in the UK: The GWCT long-term datasets.

Author Aebischer, N.J. & Baines, D.
Citation Aebischer, N.J. & Baines, D. (2008). Monitoring gamebird abundance and productivity in the UK: The GWCT long-term datasets. Revista Catalana d'Ornitologia, 24: 30-43.

Abstract

Because of the economic importance of gamebirds, land owners and game managers have long been interested in monitoring local abundance and productivity through counts and bag statistics. The National Gamebag Census (NGC) and Partridge Count Scheme (PCS) of The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT) were formally established in 1961. The NGC collects bag statistics on all game species from over 600 estates annually, and its records extend back up to 200 years. The PCS collects information on abundance and productivity of partridges from around 100 lowland estates annually since 1933. The count programme was extended in 1971 to monitor abundance and productivity of upland grouse. Using these data, we present long-term trends for five huntable bird species, several of which are poorly covered by other national schemes. Despite potential difficulties of interpretation due to shooting pressure and representativeness, the GWCT datasets usefully complement other UK bird monitoring schemes.

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