Birds in the EU are less abundant than a few decades ago, according to Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union (EU).

Since 2000, the number of these common birds has declined by an estimated 10%, while the population of common farmland birds is in continued decline – down 24% since 2000.

The occurrence of common birds is an indicator of biodiversity because many of them require specific habitats to breed and find food. These habitats are often also home to many threatened plant and animal species.

However, after many years of decline, it appears that the numbers of common birds have started to stabilise, Eurostat has revealed.

While the population of common farmland birds is decreasing, the population of common forest birds is estimated to have increased by 3% between 2000 and 2020.

The major losses in populations of common farmland bird species could be reversed by the Farm to Fork Strategy, which seeks a reduction of 50% in the overall use of and risk from chemical pesticides by 2030.

Its reversal could also be aided by the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, which aims to return at least 10% of agricultural land to land under high-diversity landscape features, and enlarge the area under organic farming so that it accounts for 25% of the EU’s total farmed land by 2030.

These strategies form part of the European Green Deal initiatives, which is one of the six European Commission priorities for 2019-2024.