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Tracking Progress Toward EU Biodiversity Strategy Targets : EU Policy Effects in Preserving its Common Farmland Birds

  • Anna Gamero
  • Lluís Brotons
  • Ariel Brunner
  • Ruud P B Foppen
  • Lorenzo Fornasari
  • Richard D. Gregory
  • Sergi Herrando
  • David Hořák
  • Frédéric Jiguet
  • Primož Kmecl
  • Aleksi Lehikoinen
  • Åke Lindström
  • Jean-Yves Paquet
  • Jiří Reif
  • Päivi M. Sirkiä
  • Jana Škorpilová
  • Arco Van Strien
  • Tibor Szép
  • Tomáš Telenský
  • Norbert Teufelbauer
  • Sven Trautmann
  • Chris A M Van Turnhout
  • Zdeněk Vermouzek
  • Thomas Vikstrøm
  • Petr Voříšek
Publishing year: 2017-07
Language: English
Pages: 395-402
Publication/Series: Conservation Letters
Volume: 10
Issue: 4
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

Abstract english

Maximizing the area under biodiversity-related conservation measures is a main target of the European Union (EU) Biodiversity Strategy to 2020. We analyzed whether agrienvironmental schemes (AES) within EU common agricultural policy, special protected areas for birds (SPAs), and Annex I designation within EU Birds Directive had an effect on bird population changes using monitoring data from 39 farmland bird species from 1981 to 2012 at EU scale. Populations of resident and short-distance migrants were larger with increasing SPAs and AES coverage, while Annex I species had higher population growth rates with increasing SPAs, indicating that SPAs may contribute to the protection of mainly target species and species spending most of their life cycle in the EU. Because farmland birds are in decline and the negative relationship of agricultural intensification with their population growth rates was evident during the implementation of AES and SPAs, EU policies seem to generally attenuate the declines of farmland bird populations, but not to reverse them.


  • Ecology
  • Zoology
  • Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use
  • Agricultural intensification
  • Agrienvironmental schemes
  • Bird monitoring
  • Birds directive
  • Common agriculture policy
  • Natura 2000
  • SPA


  • ISSN: 1755-263X
Åke Lindström
E-mail: ake [dot] lindstrom [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se



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