Are you ready for The RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch?
It all started 40 years ago as a one off activity to get young RSPB membership holders involved with birds during the winter and it wasn’t until 2001 that adults got involved too. The idea is you chose an hour on 26th or 27th January and record the maximum number of any one species that appear in your garden at any one time. For instance if you see 3 sparrows together then half an hour later you see another 2, you record the greater number (3). It is also important to record if no birds are present too. There is help too if you cannot identify a species at https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/wildlife-guides/identify-a-bird/
Last year more than half a million people took part and the results showed increased sightings of small birds such as goldfinches, coal tits and long tailed tits, and a decline in blackbirds and robins.
So what will you see? Does the food you put out make a difference? According to the RSPB dried mealworms are good for attracting sparrows, suet balls for starlings, tasty table mix for blackbirds, coconut shells for blue tits, sunflower hearts for woodpigeons and feeder mix for chaffinches.
You may see different species of birds flocking together during cold spells to improve their chances of finding food together and warding off predators.
Enjoy the hour. If you can’t find any robins you will probably find they are hanging around Gotherington Nurseries as they so often do at this time year…..
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