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There is still time to join the Big Garden Watch!


There is still time to take part in the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch.

This is said to be the world’s largest wildlife survey, and already more than half a million people from across the UK are set to take part.

This event is now in its 37th year and takes place on the weekend of 30 and 31 January.

All you need to do is sit where you have a good view of your garden (inside or out) and note down the birds you see in an hour – any daylight hour is fine over that weekend.

The overall aim is to get a good picture of how bird numbers are going across the UK.

The RSPC say they will be watching numbers of certain species very carefully. For instant, there is continuing declines include starlings and song thrushes, which have dropped by an alarming 80 and 70 per cent respectively since the Birdwatch began in 1979.

There is slightly better news for the house sparrow, as its long term decline appears to have continued to slow, and it remains the most commonly spotted bird in our gardens. However, its numbers have dropped by 57% since 1979.

Daniel Hayhow, RSPB Conservation Scientist, told Laterlife:: “Last year’s survey saw more than eight-and-a-half million birds spotted, making it another great year for participation. With over half a million people now regularly taking part, coupled with over 30 years worth of data, Big Garden Birdwatch allows us to monitor trends and helps us understand how birds are doing.

“As the format of the survey has stayed the same, the scientific data can be compared year-on-year, making your results very valuable. With results from so many gardens, we are able to create a 'snapshot' of bird numbers across the UK. Once we know which birds are in trouble, together we can ensure that our garden wildlife will be around forever.”

For more information on Big Garden Birdwatch 2016 and to obtain the Big Garden Birdwatch pack, click here

Out of interest, here are the statistics from last year’s Big Garden Birdwatch:

Rank

Species

Mean

% gardens

% change since 1979

1

House sparrow

4.254

64.58

-57.5

2

Starling

2.957

43.92

-80.3

3

Blackbird

2.753

91.63

-31.2

4

Blue tit

2.737

81.55

12.2

5

Woodpigeon

2.018

70.29

909.1

6

Chaffinch

1.445

40.39

-51.8

7

Robin

1.443

86.53

-27.8

8

Great tit

1.399

56.72

55.5

9

Goldfinch

1.300

28.38

NA

10

Collared dove

1.205

47.96

330.2

11

Magpie

1.146

52.65

186.6

12

Dunnock

0.905

45.72

13.1

13

Long tailed tit

0.809

22.10

NA

14

Feral pigeon

0.761

19.57

NA

15

Carrion crow

0.756

27.68

NA

16

Jackdaw

0.713

20.22

NA

17

Coal tit

0.565

29.89

NA

18

Greenfinch

0.461

18.02

-53.9

19

Wren

0.348

28.94

NA

20

Common gull

0.337

7.35

NA

 

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