4 August 1995

Appeal to save our skylarks

A FARMLAND bird appeal has been launched by the British Trust for Ornithology to raise money for research.

The Save Our Skylarks campaign follows a severe decline in farmland bird populations monitored by BTO surveys. In the past 25 years tree sparrow populations have dropped by 89% and skylarks by 58%. More than 10 species have declined by over 50%.

Jeremy Greenwood, BTO director, said: "The situation is becoming desperate, with some 3m fewer breeding skylarks.

"However, we should not blame the farming community but find out why the declines have happened and advise them exactly what they can do to help the different species of bird involved."