The Ringing Scheme

Ringing aims to monitor survival rates of birds and collect information about their movements. This information provides vital support for conservation efforts as it helps to understand how these processes influence population sizes over time; identifying the mechanisms is the first step in reversing declines. You can help by looking out for ringed birds and reporting them

Visit the Online Ringing and Nest Recording Report to see how many birds are ringed and recovered for the whole Ringing Scheme, covering Britain & Ireland, as well as broken down by country and county. This is also the place to find longevity records.

Visit our “Demog Blog” to find the breaking news on ringing and Ringing Surveys to see how ringers are focussing their efforts to provide information on population size, breeding success and survival through our Constant Effort Site (CES) and Retrapping Adults for Survival (RAS) projects. 

Many of our ringers are also nest recorders, find out more information on nesting success by visiting the Nest Record Scheme.

Go and look at the Population Dynamics and Migration and the ecology of migrants pages to see how information from ringing combines with other BTO surveys to provide fascinating insights into the lives of birds.

If you want to find out more about why ringing and nest recording is important you'll find it explained in Demographic Monitoring: A Strategy to Increase the Contribution of Ringing and Nest Recording to Conservation Science


Latest Ringing News


Life Cycle Spring 2016

Life Cycle Issue 3

The spring 2016 edition of Life Cycle, the BTO magazine for nest recorders and ringers, is now available online. This edition includes interpretation of the results from the 2015 breeding season (produced from data collected by nest recorders and CES and RAS ringers) and articles focusing on species including Starlings, Dippers, Wood Warblers, Stonechats and Wheatears.

Nuthatch in the hand. Photo by Dawn Balmer

2015 Preliminary Online Ringing & Nest Recording Report

The preliminary 2015 Online Ringing and Nest Recording Report is now live! The report contains the details of the >48,000 nest records and almost 986,000 ringing records recieved so far. The pages showing the timing of breeding and moult for the 15 most commonly recorded species have also been updated. The final report will be published in the summer once all submissions have been received; the longevity records and ringing totals by species will also be updated at this time.

Chaffinch abundance and productivity were low in 2015. Photograph by Jill Pakenh

2015 NRS & CES preliminary breeding season results

Information collected by BTO volunteers shows that numbers of many resident bird species, and some migrants, increased in 2015. However, the spells of cool, wet weather that much of Britain & Ireland experienced in late-spring and summer left many birds struggling to breed, with more northerly populations faring particularly badly. See the Nest Record Scheme and Constant Effort Sites scheme preliminary breeding season report for details.