Latest Research

Blackbird & pulli, photograph by Jill Pakenham

Too wet to nest?

Data gathered by nest recorders helps us understand why some nests are successful and others are not. Recent BTO research has developed a method to analyse nest record data more effectively, and revealed some intriguing differences in the effect of rainfall on Blackbird nest success.

Willow Warbler, photograph by Chris Knights

Why are Willow Warblers decreasing in the south, but not the north?

New research involving the BTO suggests that Willow Warbler population declines in southern Britain might be reversed by improving productivity there.

Tagged Lesser black-backed Gull

GPS tracks and cutting edge stats shed new light on seabird flight heights

New research led by the BTO has used a combination of GPS-tracking and advanced statistics to provide new insights into seabird flight heights by night and day. This study gives important information on the risk of seabirds colliding with offshore wind turbines and at a time when governments worldwide are investing in offshore wind farms.
Cuckoo by Edmund Fellowes

Cuckoo declines linked to different migration routes to Africa

When the BTO began ground-breaking Cuckoo tracking research in 2011, we had very little idea where these birds spent the winter or how they got there. Our latest research not only reveals this information, but also shows that Cuckoos’ use of autumn migration routes helps explain population declines.

Willow Warbler, photograph by Jill Pakenham

Causes and consequences of spatial variation in Willow Warbler sex ratios

New BTO research shows a recent imbalance in Willow Warbler sex ratios, with 60% of adult birds being male. Such a skewed ratio has implications for the conservation of this migrant species.