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Get set for Big Garden Birdwatch with RSPB Bempton Cliffs

Last modified: 15 November 2013

Greenfinch

just turn up at the reserve and join in!

Image: Nigel Blake

Can’t tell the difference between a sparrow and a starling? Confused by the many different finches out there? Then pay a visit to RSPB Bempton Cliffs in the coming months and get ready for the Big garden Birdwatch 2014. 

Staff and volunteers at the nature reserve will be holding a number of bird identification sessions to help visitors recognise the birds that visit their own gardens. Starting on 23 November and running until 25 January, each weekend the team will be manning the feeding stations on site, pointing out the different birds and explaining how to identify them using sight and sound.

Visitor Services Manager, Scott Smith, explained: “Each January the RSPB runs the Big Garden Birdwatch, where we ask people to make a note of all the birds that visit their garden in an hour. This data is then pulled together from all over the country, and the results are used to help paint a picture of bird life in Britain.

“Genning up on the most common species now will make recording them easier for those who join in – or it could just make looking out of the kitchen window and seeing what’s sitting on the bird table even more enjoyable.”

Last year almost 600,000 people took part, noting the different species they saw on their home turf.  The top three species recorded in 2012 were house sparrow, blackbird and blue tit.

And this year, for the first time, participants are being asked to log some of the other wildlife they see in their gardens too. The RSPB wants to know whether people ever see squirrels, badgers, hedgehogs, frogs and toads in their gardens, to help build an overall picture of how important our gardens are for giving all types of wildlife a home.

Maria Prchlik, Marketing Officer, said: “We really want to encourage everyone along the coast to take part in the count, as it will help us to build a picture of how our garden birds and wildlife are doing.

“Putting out feeders and food now will establish your garden as a vital ‘watering hole’ for hungry birds who need extra supplies to survive the cold times ahead. Come January, they’ll be making regular visits to your place and adding to the numbers for Big Garden Birdwatch.”

Bird ID Weekends will run every Saturday and Sunday from 23 November to 25 January 2014. There is no charge, just turn up at the reserve and join in.

To find out more about Big Garden Birdwatch or ways to make your patch of green more attractive to birds and wildlife, visit www.rspb.org.uk/birdwatch

 

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