Priority habitats: Arable field margins, Grazing marsh, Hedgerows and hedgerow trees, Lowland calcareous grassland and Lowland meadows.
Greater Lincolnshire is one of the UK’s most important agricultural areas and farming has been the dominant land use here for many centuries. DEFRA’s 2009 survey estimated that 81% of Lincolnshire County is farmed, and that 71% is ploughed annually (arable, horticulture and temporary grassland) – compared to 39% for England. Consequently availability of semi-natural habitat is below the national average, and there is a need for better delivery for biodiversity and habitat connectivity within the farmed environment. Wildlife-rich and pastoral grassland is an important element of Greater Lincolnshire's biodiversity. However, this declining resource, including grazing marsh and lowland meadows is being lost to alternative farming systems, urban creep and tourism development.
With the appropriate incentives and well-designed measures, the decline of farm biodiversity can be reversed with stewardship agreements providing the largest incentive.
Vision for Greater Lincolnshire's farmland and grassland: