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Title of the project

National Gamebag Census


To collect data on the numbers of game species hunted each year in the country

750 estates (3% national total) are surveyed every year, collecting data on bag totals per species. Data are submitted via an annual bag survey form sent out at the end of the shooting season; reminders are issued for non-returned forms. Participants are asked to provide information on the estate, including area, number of keepers, habitat, numbers of birds released and numbers of birds shot.

The project was established by the Game and Wildfowl Conservation Trust, an organisation whose fees are largely paid for by hunters. Data on bag totals was also collected from hunting estates who voluntarily provided data.


Bag trends are available here https://www.gwct.org.uk/ngc


Country United Kingdom
Level National

Starting date



Species Caracteristics Huntable species, Migratory species, Abundant species, Threatened species, Invasive Alien species
Species Type Birds
Name(s) of main species Common pheasant (Phasianus colchicus), Grey Partridge (Perdix perdix), Red-legged Partridge (Alectoris rufa), Red Grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica), Rock ptarmigan (Lagopus muta), BlackGrouse (Lyrurus tetrix), Western capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus), Common Snipe (Gallinago gallinago), Eurasian woodcock (Scolopax rusticola), European golden plover (Pluvialis apricaria), Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), Eurasian teal (Anas crecca),Eurasian wigeon (Anas penelope), Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula), Common pochard (Aythya ferina), Common goldeneye (Bucephala clangula), Northern pintail (Anas acuta), Northern shoveler (Anas clypeata), Gadwall (Anas strepera), CanadaGoose (Branta canadensis), Greylag Goose (Anser anser), Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus), White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons), Common wood pigeon (Columba palumbus), FeralPigeon (Columba livia domestica),Eurasian collared dove (Streptopelia decaocto), Carrion crow (Corvus corone), Hooded Crow (Corvus cornix), Eurasian magpie (Pica pica), Rook (Corvus frugilegus), Western jackdaw (Corvus monedula), Eurasian jay (Garrulus glandarius), Eurasian coot (Fulica atra),Common moorhen (Gallinula chloropus), European herring gull (Larus argentatus), Greater Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus), Lesser Black-backed Gull (Larus fuscus)

Conservation action(s)

Research and data collection (e.g. monitoring, bag data), communication


Leading partners Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust (https://www.gwct.org.uk/)

Estimation of Human Resources needed

23,000 Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust members were involved. The project surveyed 750 estates.


Annual publications (up to 2010) available here :https://www.gwct.org.uk/research/long-term-monitoring/national-gamebag-census/mammal-bags-comprehensive-overviews/tracking-mammals-partnership-reports/