LifeCycle is the magazine of the British and Irish Ringing Scheme and the Nest Record Scheme (NRS), published twice a year, in the spring and autumn.

A newsletter for volunteers...

LifeCycle is primarily a magazine for the dedicated ringers and nest recorders who contribute so much time and effort to collecting essential data on the breeding success, survival and movements of Britain & Ireland’s birds.

As such, it includes practical ringing and nest finding tips, details of novel techniques and summaries of successful monitoring projects that demonstrate the initiative, hard work and skill of existing volunteers, while hopefully inspiring others to set up their own studies.

Many of the articles are written by ringers and nest recorders, the people with the field expertise, and we would welcome ideas and contributions for future editions.

...and also a magazine for those interested in birds

While there are some articles of a technical nature in LifeCycle, you certainly don’t have to be a ringer or nest recorder to enjoy them – but be warned, once you’ve read it, you may find it difficult to resist signing up for a survey!

If you are interested in birds, bird behaviour and conservation you will enjoy the articles, not least because they include summaries of the annual results generated from the wide range of BTO demographic surveys, including the Constant Effort Site (CES) and Retrapping Adults for Survival (RAS) schemes.

Access to back-issues

LifeCycle replaces the scheme newsletters that were previously sent to ringers and nest recorders (Ringing News, NRS News and CES & RAS News). Archive editions of the previous newsletters NRS News and CES & RAS News can be downloaded from the CES, RAS and NRS web pages.

Contact the editors:

Please send ideas and contributions for future editions to:

  • Lee Barber, Demographic Surveys Organiser, email: nrs [at]
  • Ruth Walker, Ringing and Nest Recording Communications Officer, email: ruth.walker [at]


The Ringing and Nest Record Schemes are funded by a partnership of the BTO and the JNCC on behalf of the statutory nature conservations bodies (Natural England, Natural Resources Wales, Scottish Natural Heritage and the Department of the Environment Northern Ireland).

Ringing is also funded by The National Parks and Wildlife Service (Ireland) and the ringers themselves. The BTO supports ringing and nest recording for scientific purposes and is licensed by the statutory nature conservation bodies to permit bird ringing and some aspects of nest recording.

All activities described are undertaken with appropriate licenses and following codes of conduct designed to ensure the welfare of birds and their nests are not adversely affected.

Browse LifeCycle issues

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