Monday, 12 January 2015

Big Fun with the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch

Regular readers know how much I love birds. I love all the different colours of their feathers, the songs they sing, how they eat weed seeds (saving Mummy and Daddy from having to pick so many), and how they keep pest insects like aphids under control in the garden. So I'm super excited that the annual RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch is happening this month.

Clever Daddy took this photo of a Thrush whilst he relaxed in a garden (the Thrush, not Daddy!)

The Big Garden Birdwatch is a survey of the birds you can see in your garden or nearest green space and has been running since 1979- that's so old (almost as old as Mummy and Daddy). It helps brainy conservationists learn how healthy the countryside is and if the numbers of any bird types are dropping so we can give them extra help.
Did you know that gardens make up about 4% of the UK's land and that birds come into our gardens for food and shelter when conditions in the countryside get really hard?

A Robin

This year's Big Garden Birdwatch is happening on January 24th and 25th and is really, really easy to be part of:

  • Get your Mummy or Daddy to help you register online
  • Spend one hour watching and recording the birds that come to your garden (it doesn't matter what time of day)
  • Submit your results online
  • Feel all smug that you've helped gather super important information to help the birds
A Great tit

I recently reviewed the fabby RSPB book on how to identify the different birds you might see in your garden and how to make a trendy bird feeder to encourage them. But you don't need to have that book as the Big Garden Birdwatch website has great pictures of each of the different birds you might expect to see in your garden.

A Goldfinch

The birds you might see will depend upon the food they can find in your garden and the type of feeder you use.  

Blue tits, and Great tits like seeds in hanging feeders.

A Blue tit

Blackbirds and wrens like their food to be scattered on the ground.
A Wren

House sparrows and Bullfinches aren't fussy and will eat food from any location.
A Bullfinch

The Big Garden Birdwatch website even has a super cool live bird counter that you can use on a computer or smartphone. It has hints and tips and lots of fun facts to learn whilst your doing your important work.

A House Sparrow

If you prefer furry or scaly creatures to birds then you'll be happy to hear than you can also count the number of squirrels, hedgehogs, badgers, deer, grass snakes or slow worms.

Hedgehogs should be hibernating but you might be lucky and see one

In the run-up to the weekend there are loads of regional activities going on to help you encourage birds to your garden and to recognise the ones that come. You can search for events near you here.

A slow worm

If that wasn't enough fun the RSPB has really great bird related activities for you do. My BFF Euan says he is going to get his Mummy and Daddy to help him make the strawberry jelly wobbly wriggly worms, must be a boy thing! I'll let you know how he gets on.

Strawberry and cream worms, yum, yum!

I'd love to hear what birds you see in the Big Garden Birdwatch.

Hugs & kisses,

Lulu xx

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