The BASC Wildlife Fund offers financial support to shoots, clubs and syndicates for hands-on conservation initiatives and sustainable land management.
Thanks to your donations, we can provide funding for land purchase and conservation projects in the UK. We are also involved in international projects where these relate to UK migratory species.
Since January 2020, we have awarded more than £350,000 in grants for a range of projects. You can find some of these below.
Combatting the curlew crisis
Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) received a grant of £75,000 for its Combatting the Curlew Crisis project, run over three years (2020 to 2022).
The grant has been used to fund habitat improvement and head-starting for the curlew breeding recovery project in the Severn and Avon vales.
Seeking to increase the population of breeding curlew from a baseline of 36 pairs in 2019 to 50 pairs by 2023, the project provides a model for other local conservation efforts for curlew and their habitats in lowland areas of southern Britain.
Hen harriers at Swinton Estate
Swinton Estate was awarded a grant of £4,800 for the purchase and installation of camera equipment to record and monitor nesting hen harriers.
Providing valuable information to aid research into hen harrier ecology, the cameras transmit a live feed to give the public access to previously unseen footage of these majestic birds.
Watch some of the 2022 footage from the nest camera by clicking on the film.
The Waterfowlers’ Network was awarded a grant of £50,170 for Project Penelope, which tracks Eurasian wigeon through their annual migration cycle to support effective conservation efforts.
Running from spring 2021 – 2024, Project Penelope aims to better understand the winter movements, flyway paths and breeding sites of Eurasian wigeon, which in turn will inform sustainable shooting of this species.
The project will ultimately see 4,000 wigeon ringed, with 102 fitted with GPS-GSM trackers. Having been monitored from their wintering grounds in the UK, Project Penelope sees UK teams working collaboratively with researchers in Denmark and Finland to track wigeon across the eastern flyway. The project is endorsed by FACE and Defra.
Wetlands at Poulton Court
Gloucestershire Wildfowling and Conservation Association received a grant of £23,913 for the creation of wetland habitat at Poulton Court on the Severn Estuary.
The grant was awarded to fund the creation of new wetland ponds and scrapes for breeding and overwintering waders and waterfowl at Poulton.
Learn more about the project by clicking on the film link.
Boa Island recovery project
Lough Erne Wildfowling Council were awarded 25,000 (£5,000 per annum until 2024) for the 2020-2024 Boa Island Wader Recovery Project.
The project primarily aims increase the breeding success of threatened waders in Northern Ireland (curlew, lapwing and redshank, and amber-listed snipe) at key sites across Boa Island, Lower Lough Erne.
Contributing towards several initiatives, the grant has funded aspects such as habitat improvement – including sward management and scrub clearance – predator control, education of farmers, wildfowlers and the public, and the annual ornithological monitoring of the impact of the project on breeding wader populations.
Hen harrier brood management
The Moorland Association was awarded a grant of £25,000 per annum (£100,000 in total) for the Hen Harrier Brood Management trial, which commenced 2020.
A collaborative venture between Natural England, the Moorland Association, the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, the Hawk and Owl Trust, and Aberdeen University, the project aims to establish whether a brood management scheme would, as part of the Defra Hen Harrier Action Plan, contribute to an increase in numbers of hen harriers in Northern England.
The project tested the practicalities of brood management and has yielded some outstanding results. Read more about the scheme here.
Habitat creation at Hutton Marsh
Preston and District Wildfowling Association secured a grant of £21,288 for a habitat creation project at Hutton Marsh.
Funding habitat improvement for both ground and non-ground nesting birds, the project also supported habitat creation for overwintering wildfowl, water voles and otters within Hutton Marsh.
Wetland creation on the Humber
Barton-on-Humber Wildfowlers were awarded a grant of £35,790 to assist with the creation of wetlands areas over 28 acres at Horkstow, Barton-on-Humber.
The project created new and additional wetland and ponds from existing grassland, enhancing the club’s north and south wetland purchased in 2017.
The club created common wetland water level areas throughout the land, providing an ideal habitat for wildfowl, waterfowl and waders, along with a host of other bird and mammal life.