Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust
The trust has spent over 60 years conducting extension work and researching sympathetic ways of managing the countryside for the benefit of Britain’s game and wildlife.
The Trust has expertise in agroecology, biological control, biometrics, botany, entomology, farming systems, GIS, landscape management for biodiversity, mammal ecology and ornithology. This expertise has been used to provide practical management advice for biodiversity conservation in agricultural areas in the UK and, for over 70 years, provide inputs into policy.
GWCT promotes its findings to scientists, conservationists and land managers through scientific publication (with 1400 scientific publications since 1970), conferences, the media, advice and education. The Trust operates two demonstration farms, one arable of 333 ha in England and the other arable/livestock of 417 ha in Scotland. Seven in-house advisors provide on-farm advice and organise on-farm knowledge exchange events. GCT has expertise in citizen science operating two monitoring schemes that involve farmers: the partridge count scheme, on approximately 500 farms per annum, and the Big Farmland Bird count on over 1400 farms. The 14 strong communications department reach farmers, the wider agricultural community and policy makers through a variety of media including information leaflets, a scientific annual review, in-house magazine, website, facebook, blogs and twitter. Advisors and scientists frequently present at farming conferences, workshops and farm-based events.
GWCT also runs several long-term monitoring schemes on farmland insects, plants, birds and game species. Relevant to the call are the two unique databases in which there is annual data on densities of farmland invertebrates, arable plants and crop management inputs: the 50-year old Sussex Study from across 62 km2 and 25-year old study from the English GCT demonstration farm. GCT also holds national data on the autumn and spring densities of grey partridge since 1933. GCT has taken a leading role in developing and facilitating the Farmer Cluster movement in the UK which is helping farmers to help themselves, and their neighbours, to deliver greater biodiversity and environmental benefits.