Contents of report
Breeding Bird Survey
Common Birds Census
Constant Effort Sites
Nest Record Scheme
Waterways Bird Survey
What the categories mean
Return to BTO Home Page
SNIPE Gallinago gallinago
Conservation Listings Long term trend

(25-49% population decline)
Biodiversity Steering Group Conservation Concern List

UK: Probable decline
Status Summary
Snipe are poorly monitored by the CBC because of their northern, western and upland breeding distribution, and they are now found on too few plots to allow an index to be calculated. The decline in, and range contraction from, lowland Britain is probably due to the drainage of farmland during agricultural intensification affecting productivity (Gibbons et al. 1993, Siriwardena et al. 2000). The BBS shows no clear population trend in the 1990s but does suggest a moderate decline in England over the last 5 years.
Table of population changes for Snipe
Source Period
Years Plots
Alert Comment
BBS UK 5 1994-1999 117 7 -15 33    
BBS England 5 1994-1999 50 -36 -54 -12 (>25) Small sample
BBS Scotland 5 1994-1999 55 39 0 95    
The Breeding Bird Survey is jointly funded by BTO, JNCC and RSPB
Table of productivity information for Snipe
Variable Period
Years Mean
Trend Predicted
in first year
in last year
Change Comment
Clutch size 30 1968-1998 13 None       Small sample
Daily failure rate (eggs) 30 1968-1998 18 Linear decline 0.032 nests/day 0.0189 nests/day -0.0131 nests/day Small sample
Insufficient data on brood size
available for this species
Insufficient data on nestling failure available for this species


Insufficient data on laying date
available for this species



Insufficient data on CES
available for this species




The report should be cited as: Baillie, S.R., Crick, H.Q.P., Balmer, D.E., Bashford, R.I., Beaven, L.P., Freeman, S.N., Marchant, J.H., Noble, D.G., Raven, M.J., Siriwardena, G.M., Thewlis, R. and Wernham, C.V. (2001) Breeding Birds in the Wider Countryside: their conservation status 2000. BTO Research Report No. 252. BTO, Thetford. (

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Last updated: 18 April, 2001

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