Carbon Landscape Citizen Science Project

View available survey squares


This project is one of the 22 projects which together form the Carbon Landscape Programme. The Carbon Landscape Programme area, which can be viewed via the survey squares map, encloses the core of the Great Manchester Wetlands Nature Improvement Area (NIA). The NIA supports a host of European and UK protected species, as well as UK Biodiversity Priority Species, all of which depend upon the mossland and wetland habitats which the Carbon Landscape Programme will enhance and restore.

Our Citizen Science Project, supported by the Heritage Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, will build upon existing survey work being undertaken, and will also recruit and train new recorders (our Citizen Scientists), to measure the success of restoration works delivered by the Carbon Landscape partners. This project will significantly increase survey coverage for target species across the habitat restoration areas and the wider Carbon Landscape.

Target species

Bitterns (CL01)

Survey period: Apr to May

Image David Winnard ©2018

Dragonflies (CL02)

Survey period: May to Sep

Survey handbook

Guide to common species

Habitat survey form

Combined transect & ponds survey form

Image Ken Gartside ©2018

Farmland breeding birds (CL03)

Survey period: Apr to Jun

Survey handbook

Habitat codes

Habitat survey form

Bird survey form

View recording compartments map

Image Adrian Dancy ©2018

Water vole (CL05)

Survey period: Apr to Sep

Survey handbook

Habitat survey form

Survey form

PTES field signs guide

Image Peter Trimming cc-by-sa

Wetland birds
breeding (CL06A)

Survey period: Apr to Jul

Wetland birds
non breeding (CL06B)

Survey period: Sep to Mar. Habitat data is submitted via this portal and bird data via the BTO WeBS portal.

BTO WeBS portal

Survey handbook

Habitat survey form

Non-breeding bird survey form

Image Adrian Dancy ©2018

Winter farmland birds (CL08)

Survey period: Nov to Feb

Instructions for surveyors

Habitat codes

Habitat survey form

Bird survey form

View recording compartments map

Image Adrian Dancy ©2018

About the surveys

Each survey methodology has been designed with guidance from specialist county and vice-county recorders who between them have a wealth of experience in structured species monitoring in the North-west of England. The survey methods we are rolling-out through this project will ensure that monitoring activities are structured and repeatable, allowing valuable data to be collected, not only during the three year life of this project, but well into the future.

Biological datasets are of most value when collected over a long period of time. Monitoring the abundance and distribution of the target species into the future is an important mechanism for measuring the success of habitat works on the ground and changes to the landscape over time. This will be of particular benefit to those owning or managing land within the Carbon Landscape, whilst providing ecologists and conservationists with biological data that can be analysed at landscape scale.

Between now and 2020 Greater Manchester Local Record Centre (GMLRC) will be running a series of species identification and survey training courses. These courses will equip volunteer Citizen Scientists with the necessary skills to undertake these structured surveys. If you are interested in biological recording and would like to get involved then please email for further information.

Habitats photo guide

Want to know how to identify your different types of grassland? Or perhaps you want to know the differences between bogs, flushes and swamps? We've got you covered with this simplified habitat photo id guide.

Surveying code of conduct

Whilst gaining accurate records is important, the interest of the species you are recording and the respect of other people, especially land owners, comes first. Download the code of conduct.

Landowners' permission

We rely very much on the good will of farmers and landowners. Permission for access onto private land where there are no public rights of way must be obtained prior to conducting surveys. If you are unsure if you have permission to walk onto land please check with GMEU first. This letter briefly explains that you require access to carry out ecological surveys and may assist with your opening discussions with landowners.

Greater Manchester Ecology Unit,
Dukinfield Town Hall,
King Street,
SK16 4LA

0161 342 4409

An ALERC member

© GMLRC 2019. View our privacy policy and terms of use or update your mailing preferences. The information on this website has been provided as general information only and the Greater Manchester Ecology Unit can not accept responsibility for loss occasioned after reliance placed on any of the contents of this website. The Greater Manchester Ecology Unit makes no warranty as to the accuracy of site information or contents.