• Auchincruive Estate, SAC Consulting, JF Niven Building

    KA6 5HW Ayr

    United Kingdom

  • Hill & Mountain Research Centre, Kirkton Farm

    FK20 8RU Crianlarich

    United Kingdom

  • SRUC Riverside Campus

    KA8 0SX Ayr

    United Kingdom

  • SRUC Barony Campus, Parkgate

    DG1 3NE Dumfries

    United Kingdom

1992 …2020

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Personal profile

After completing my PhD on the feeding ecology of the red-billed chough in 1990, I first worked on an investigation into the relationships between moorland vegetation and upland invertebrates at the University of Newcastle. 

I then moved to the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) where I helped highlight the nature conservation importance of High Nature Value (HNV) farming systems throughout Europe.

I joined SRUC in 1995 and input to a wide variety of national and international projects which aim not only to assess the relationships between farming systems and farmland biodiversity but to also highlight the likely implications of agri-environment and wider Common Agricultural Policy reform.

I took on the role of Head of SRUC’s Hill & Mountain Research Centre in 2013. Much of the Centre’s research is focused around SRUC’s Kirkton & Auchtertyre Research farms, near Crianlarich, which we are developing to be a platform for agricultural, environmental and agro-forestry research and demonstration.

I took on the role of Head of the Department of Integrated Land Management in SRUC’s South & West Faculty in 2019. This Department brings together research, education and consultancy expertise with an aspiration of ensuring that land-based sector students – irrespective of the primary focus of their qualification – will obtain a much better understanding of the constraints and opportunities facing other land use sectors.

At a wider European level, I am involved in a range of research and demonstration projects investigating the economic, social and environmental resilience of upland livestock systems and seeking to understand the trade-offs associated with changes to those systems.


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Research Output

Collateral benefits of targeted supplementary feeding on demography and growth rate of a threatened population

Fenn, S., Bignal, E. M., Trask, A. E., McCracken, DI., Monaghan, P. & Reid, J. M., 24 Jul 2020, In : Journal of Applied Ecology.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Biodiversity and the livestock sector: Guidelines for quantitative assessment: Version 1

    FAO, 22 Jun 2020, Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. 142 p.

    Research output: Book/Report/Policy BriefCommissioned report

    Open Access

    Back to the future: rethinking the socioecological systems underlying high nature value farmlands

    Lomba, Â., Moreira, F., Klimek, S., Jongman, R., Sullivan, C., Moran, J., Poux, X., Honrado, JP., Pinto-Correia, T., Plieninger, T. & McCracken, DI., 1 Feb 2020, In : Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. 18, 1, p. 36-42 7 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 2 Citations (Scopus)
    22 Downloads (Pure)

    Detecting temporal changes in the extent of High Nature Value farmlands: the case-study of Entre-Douro-e-Minho Region, Portugal

    Lomba, Â., Buchadas, A., Corbelle-Rico, E., Jongman, R. & McCracken, DI., Mar 2020, In : Landscape and Urban Planning. 195, 103726.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 1 Citation (Scopus)

    Understanding farmer uptake of measures that support biodiversity and ecosystem services in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)

    Brown, C., Kovacs, E., Zinngrebe, Y., Albizua, A., Galanaki, A., Grammatikopoulou, I., Herzon, I., Marquardt, D., McCracken, DI., Olsson, J. & Villamayor-Tomas, S., 3 Jul 2019, Wallingford, UK: EKLIPSE Expert Working Group. Centre for Ecology & Hydrology. 60 p.

    Research output: Book/Report/Policy BriefCommissioned report

    Open Access
  • Activities

    • 25 Membership of committee
    • 4 Editorial work
    • 1 Participating in a conference, workshop, ...
    • 1 Invited talk

    Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park (External organisation)

    Davy McCracken (Chair)

    2019 → …

    Activity: Membership typesMembership of committee

    Scottish Government (External organisation)

    Davy McCracken (Member)

    2019 → …

    Activity: Membership typesMembership of committee

    FAO (External organisation)

    Davy McCracken (Member)

    2017 → …

    Activity: Membership typesMembership of committee

    Scottish Natural Heritage (External organisation)

    Davy McCracken (Chair)

    2016 → …

    Activity: Membership typesMembership of committee

    Livestock, parasites and conservation grazing (Podcast)

    Davy McCracken (Speaker)

    22 Jul 2020

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

    Press / Media

    Farmers can help reverse wader decline

    Davy McCracken


    1 item of Media coverage