Having completed the last of my seven early timed tetrad visits for the BTO Atlas a couple of hours ago and just done uploading the data I thought I'd post a couple of random thoughts from the time I've spent.
Greenfinch - Where are they all? Several tetrads without any, none with more than three. Chaffinch numbers seem pretty poor too.
Footpaths - There should be a requirement on landowners to maintain visible footpath routes and way markers. If it already exists then there is a few folk around here doing their level best to ignore it.
Farming & Wildlife - It appears to me that, at least in the limited sample areas I've covered, that most of the farmers are doing almost nothing to maintain or encourage biodiversity. Leaving a few metres around field edges is all well and good but there is no huge benefit if what is growing there is of poor value. I see more effort going in to maintain Pheasant numbers than any native species, I wonder why? There is a some spin off benefit of the supplementary feeding that goes on and some of the planting specifically to help the Pheasant but it is not particularly intentional.
The last couple of weeks have reinforced my belief that expecting farmers to voluntarily look after biodiversity is ludicrous. If we want it to happen we have to make them do it and be prepared to pay them for doing it - period.