The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

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The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 28 Jan 2012, 10:52

The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch happens over this weekend 28th -29th January 2012

The RSPB BIG Garden Bird Watch

The website has all the information you need and what to do to help out the survey. You can download a recording sheet and there's a link for uploading your results plus identification information etc.

I noticed that a number of members have been posting pictures of garden birds in the photograhic calendar thread.

Well, here is a golden opportunity to get some good snaps and help out the annual survey of garden birds.

We have a feeder pole on our little fron garden on the Croft and offer Mixed Seeds, Peanuts, Fat Balls and sundry other bits in the tray for stuff that won't go in a feeder, a water tray completes the setup.

Yesterday it was like watching a motorway cafe at peak feeding time with the comings and goings. Visitors included:

Collared Doves (pair of course)
Starlings
Sparrows
Blue Tits
Coal Tits
Chaffinch
Wren
Blackbirds
Robin

Plese get involved, you only have to watch for an hour, the survey helps to monitor the bird populations across the country each year.

You may also get that "special photo" that will make it onto the calendar.

Have fun.
Ian

Callunna

Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Callunna » 28 Jan 2012, 11:25

Our garden at Westfield Road had a wonderful variety of bird visitors (including a woodpecker and a pheasant), as did the reed beds of the canal towpath, but sadly we don’t have any birds in our back yard now owing, no doubt, to the neighbouring cats.
We've even festooned a bird feeder with a tempting array of nuts, seeds and fats - but not one taker.

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Julie in Norfolk » 30 Jan 2012, 11:17

As per normal, our garden was devoid of birdlife over the weekend, despite Steve's ministrations with birdfeeders etc. Today is another matter! More birds than you can throw a stick at (if you will excuse the similie). Tits, Chaffinches, blackbirds, starlings, sparrows etc. etc. TYPICAL!

Now they are taking the p*ss: Goldfinch and Greenfich as well
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 03 Feb 2012, 20:47

Just sent my results up to the RSPB here are our figures from last Saturday:

2 x Blackbird
7 x Blue Tit
4 x Chaffinch
3 x Coal Tit
2 x Collared Dove
4 x Great Tit
1 x Greenfinch
5 x House Sparrow
5 x Long Tailed Tit
1 x Robin
1 x Song Thrush
2 x Starling
1 x Wren
2 x Goldcrest

We have a small front garden along with the others on our terraced row on the Croft in Barlick, the end of our street opens onto Valley Gardens which has mixed trees and shrubs with the beck running through the valley bottom. We have a feeder in the garden which offers mixed wild bird seed (Sunflower, various grasses and some oily), peanuts, remains of a few mince pies on the survey day and water. We keep the feeders going all year round with some offerings of food.

Not a bad result, better than a number of previous years. All the birds that visit regularly look to be very healthy. We have watched a few of the species (Blue Tits and Sparrows) through from fledglings to adult. We have two cats (one a hunter) but they do not tend to bother the birds in winter, although they watch and swear occasionally from the window bottom.
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 06 Nov 2012, 20:22

It's not the bird watch yet but I have posted to remind folk to help the birds through winter. If you have a garden and a bird table or feeder please keep it supplied through the winter. We keep our small feeder going all year round and since this time last year the visitors to our small front garden have managed to eat their way through a 12.5kg bag of mixed seed along with a few bags of nuts and sundry other scraps whenever available. The birds look in the best condition that I have seen for quite a few years and I hope that the small contribution we have made has helped to play a part in their welfare. Even if you don't have a garden you can still offer food via the kitchen roof or back yard wall. Please be consistent if you can which will help them to survive whatever the winter throws at us this year.
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Gloria » 06 Nov 2012, 21:12

We are on with it.
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Tizer » 07 Nov 2012, 10:19

If you have a garden it's good to also plant some shrubs that will have berries in winter: hawthorn, blackthorn, pyrocantha, cotoneaster etc. You might then also get fieldfares and redwings in your garden. Mahonia is a good one too - it has yellow scented flowers in winter and small birds come for nectar and insects, then when the big black berries form the blackbirds love them.

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Moh » 09 Nov 2012, 13:55

We keep our feeders and suet ball feeders topped up with a few extra treats added.
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Tizer » 09 Nov 2012, 16:22

We had fieldfares and redwings eating the hawthorn berries today but the pigeons have noticed and barged in - they eat many times more than the other birds and look too big to fly!

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 21 Jan 2013, 14:18

The RSPB garden bird survey takes place next weekend:

RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

26th -27th January 2013


There is a dedicated website here where you can register and get your tally sheet for the survey. Lots of other information on there as well. Please take the time to take part, the survey is one of the main methods of monitoring the wild bird population in the UK. Our feeders are stocked all year round so we should get a good tally again this year.
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Gloria » 21 Jan 2013, 15:58

We are all ready for it. We had three long tailed tits on saturday, we hadn't seen any for ages so that was good.
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Wendyf » 21 Jan 2013, 17:00

I haven't done it before because we never used to see many garden birds, but Col has been keeping his feeders topped up for a couple of years now and we get quite a few visitors. I've registered and printed out my tally sheet so I'm all prepared. Thanks for the reminder Ian.

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 21 Jan 2013, 18:41

It certainly does make a difference if you feed all year round. We do the same and over the years we have seen our numbers on the day go up each year. We have recognisable individual that visit us on a regular basis. A pair of Collard Doves and passing territorial visitors in the shape of three different robins who all pop in for a feed (never at the same time of course). We have a plump "Christmas Card" Robin, a thinner one and what looks like a this years fledgling who is probably still establishing his territory. A whole mob of hooligan Starlings who come for any loose feed but are becoming more deft at raiding the Blue Tits feeders. They do have a knock on effect though in that they scatter so much stuff around the bottom of our feeding station that the Blackbirds have learnt to follow them shortly after a mob visit to do the ground clearing up. We have a Pear tree in the corner of or small front garden so I put fat balls in there for the smaller birds, the Starlings never seem to bother with stuff in the tree.
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 28 Jan 2013, 10:30

I have just put our observation results up onto the RSPB website. Not as good a showing as last year and not what we normally see from day to day. Lots of visitors missing during our hour.

2 x Blackbird
2 x Blue Tit
3 x Collared Dove
5 x Long Tailed Tit
1 x Robin
5 x Starling

It was the first time we have seen 3 Collared Doves at the same time, we have our regular pair that visit but they brought a mate during the observation. The Long Tailed Tits always come as a small flock.
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Gloria » 28 Jan 2013, 12:10

We did ours, and didn't have as many as we have had in the past.
2 blackbirds
4 blue tits
2 chaffinchs
1 coal tit
1 collared dove
2 long tailed tits (5 later on but those didn't count)
2 magpies
1 robin
1 bull finch
1 greater spotted woodpecker (female, not seen male all winter)
2 Jays
1 kestrel
4 pheasant (1 male, 3 female)
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 28 Jan 2013, 13:01

I think it may be have been the dramatic change in the weather over weekend that had a knock on effect on the birds. On most days we can expect to see lots more species and a lot more birds. It was bitter yesterday with the cutting wind and our hour obviously did not coincide with their feeding requirements. We offer mixed seed, fat balls, peanuts, fruit and bread and cereal scraps along with water.
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Wendyf » 28 Jan 2013, 13:20

I did mine on Saturday when it was snowy, there were no birds about yesterday.
5 starlings
1 blackbird
1 chaffinch
2 sparrows
2 jackdaws
1 dunnock.

I think it was a dunnock, grey underneath and speckled reddish brown on top.

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by hartley353 » 28 Jan 2013, 20:05

We did our count on sunday morning,and it was possibly the best count since we started this. But yet again no sparrows or starlings turned up not a good sign.
4 Bluetits
2 Coaltits.
1 Nuthatch
1Greywagtail
1 Robin
2 Collared doves
1 Magpie
2 Woodpigeons.
We feed for all types of birds,but some are becoming so nervous and will fly in ,and then out to the high trees with what they can grab. This suggests that the large number of house cats in my vicinity are a problem, it used to be a sparrow hawk till the cats got it....Mike.

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 23 Jan 2014, 23:36

This years survey takes place over the coming weekend 25th -26th January 2014. Link below for more information.
The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch 2014
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Gloria » 24 Jan 2014, 09:03

We shall be doing ours probably sunday, but I know we have less variety than usual--the green finches seem to have disappeared completely.
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Gloria » 26 Jan 2014, 14:28

Did ours for one hour over lunch today.

2 green finch
1 gold finch
5 long tailed tits (we call them lollipops)
3 chaffinch
2 blue tits
3 great tits
5 wood pigeons
2 black birds
1 robin
1 coal tit
1 great spotted woodpecker
1 male pheasant
2 collared doves

We usually get 4/5 female pheasants along with the male but not to be seen during the hour.
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Wendyf » 26 Jan 2014, 15:40

I've missed doing it this weekend, just got back from a trip to Leeds today and was busy with History Society stuff yesterday. There are only jackdaws and starlings braving the weather out there now.

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by PanBiker » 26 Jan 2014, 20:27

Very poor showing in our garden this year, been the same for quite a few weeks now while the cold wet weather has been with us.

1 x Blackbird
1 x Jackdaw
3 x Starling
Ian

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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Moh » 27 Jan 2014, 13:53

We had lots of sparrows
3 collared doves
2 wood pigeons
I think the other small birds were put off by the strong wind.
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Re: The RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

Post by Tripps » 27 Jan 2014, 15:19

Is there any ornithological reason that this survey is carried out at the end of January? Weather was too bad to even step outside for me.
Born to be mild. . .

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