The British Trust for Ornithology
CORN BUNTING
Miliaria calandra
Corn Bunting © Nicholas Watts
Conservation listings

Table 2/Red (>=50% Population decline)
Biodiversity Steering Group Priority Species List

Long-term trend
UK: Rapid decline
Status summary
Corn Buntings declined between the mid 1970s and mid 1980s, after which the decline has continued but at a much reduced rate. The BBS also shows a continuing decline. Corn Bunting breeding performance has increased considerably over this period (Crick 1997), and the best hypothesis as to the demographic mechanism behind the decline is probably that survival rates have fallen. However, ring-recovery sample sizes do not permit this to be tested (Siriwardena et al. 1998b, 2000b). The decrease in survival rates is probably a result of the deleterious effects of agricultural intensification on seed availability in winter (Donald 1997).
Table of population changes for Corn Bunting
Source Period
(yrs)
Years Plots
(n)
Change
(%)
Lower
limit
Upper
limit
Alert Comment
CBC all habitats 31 1968-1999 24 -87 -93 -76 >50  
  25 1974-1999 21 -89 -94 -81 >50  
  10 1989-1999 14 -49 -69 -20 >25 Small sample
  5 1994-1999 14 -36 -52 -3 >25 Small sample
CBC farmland 31 1968-1999 20 -88 -94 -75 >50 Small sample
  25 1974-1999 17 -90 -95 -80 >50 Small sample
  10 1989-1999 13 -52 -70 -16 >50 Small sample
  5 1994-1999 13 -38 -58 -2 >25 Small sample
BBS UK 6 1994-2000 146 -35 -46 -23 (>25)  
BBS England 6 1994-2000 139 -38 -48 -27 (>25)  
The Breeding Bird Survey is jointly funded by BTO, JNCC and RSPB
Table of productivity information for Corn Bunting
Variable Period
(yrs)
Years Mean
annual
sample
Trend Predicted
in first year
Predicted
in last year
Change Comment
Brood size 31 1968-1999 12 Curvilinear 3.09 chicks 3.62 chicks 0.53 chicks Small sample
Daily failure rate (eggs) 31 1968-1999 13 None       Small sample
Daily failure rate (chicks) 31 1968-1999 11 Linear decline 0.0355 nests/day 0.0112 nests/day -0.0243 nests/day Small sample
Laying date 31 1968-1999 15 Linear decline day 180 day 165 -15 days Small sample

Insufficient data on CES
available for this species




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This report should be cited as:
Baillie, S.R., Crick, H.Q.P., Balmer, D.E., Beaven, L.P., Downie, I.S., Freeman, S.N., Leech, D.I., Marchant, J.H.,
Noble, D.G., Raven, M.J., Simpkin, A.P., Thewlis, R.M. and Wernham, C.V.
(2002) Breeding Birds in the Wider
Countryside: their conservation status 2001. BTO Research Report No. 278. BTO, Thetford. (http://www.bto.org/birdtrends)

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