While most of our modern agricultural systems exclude “arable weeds” to boost productivity there is opportunity along the field boundaries to create wildlife rich areas. Where seeds will always blow in, or the field edges are less productive, some farmers leave field margins to shoot with wildflowers. These areas are particularly important for several bird species for the cover and food they provide. The tall herbs and other flowers are an important refuge for small mammals, particularly when the field is harvested.
These wild edges can have benefits to the farm as well. These areas encourage insects like ladybirds, who have an appetite for some crop pests.
For more information see:
RSPB: Advice for farmers on arable field margins
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