David Norfolk

Research Officer

David conducts multi-taxa field research and a range of associated project tasks for the Terrestrial Ecology Team

Interests & Responsibilities

David is responsible for delivering a significant proportion of BTO’s professional land-based survey and sampling work. He has worked on a number of large-scale upland and lowland farmland research and monitoring projects across the UK. This involves liaising with landowners, organising survey logistics, sample preparation, extensive data collation, cross-taxa species identification and digitising spatial data.  David also supports other science teams across BTO with invertebrate analysis, surveys and the production of reports, assessments and papers.

He has extensive experience surveying multiple taxa in arable landscapes using a variety of both standardised and novel data collection techniques. He is particularly interested in the comparative biodiversity of different farming systems and the effectiveness of agri-environment schemes.  He is also interested in the development of bespoke survey techniques for species specific research and the design of national surveys.

In previous roles David has been employed as a field botanist and protected species surveyor for commercial consultancies, a freelance ecologist on national infrastructure projects and has wardened at Gibraltar Point NNR.

David undertook the largest ever avifaunal survey on the Mauritian Island of Rodrigues for his MSc thesis to ascertain and remap the population and distribution of the Vulnerable endemic Rodrigues Fody.

When not birding on the north Norfolk coast, David likes to spend his free time working with other conservation organisations and initiatives throughout the UK and overseas. In recent years he has enjoyed carrying out field research alongside European counterparts in Hungary, Spain, Bulgaria and Estonia.


MSc Applied Ecology and Conservation, University of East Anglia, 2010
BSc (Hons) Conservation and Land Management, University of Northampton, 2008
FdSc Land Management, University of Northampton, 2007

Recent BTO Publications

Clewley, G.D., Norfolk, D.L., Leech, D.I. & Balmer, D.E. 2016. Playback survey trial for the Little Owl Athene noctua in the UK. Bird Study 63 (part 2) : 268-272 View at journal website (DOI: 10.1080/00063657.2016.1180344)

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