Mark Avery did a remarkable job summarising agriculture-related issues over the last 50 years (BB eye, Brit. Birds 113: 310–312). I birdwatched from the mid 1960s, worked on pests of field crops in the Government’s agriculture advisory arm (NAAS/ADAS) from 1970, and witnessed at first hand the huge agricultural changes taking place at that time. Our view of farmland bird trends i

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