Take part in the UK’s biggest annual citizen science annual project by spending one hour of any of the days above counting the birds that come to your garden and then submit them via the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch website.

Remember all ages can take part, this is a great way to get your children/grandchildren/nephews/nieces… involved with the bird watching.

The website when you sign up will also give you the guide to the most common British Birds if you don’t know your sparrows from your robins!

You can do your bird watch from the comfort and warmth of your home, or [despite it’s name] you can also do the bird watch in your local park as well.

When you count the birds in your garden, during the hour’s bird watch, ensure that you count the most number of each species seen at any one time, otherwise you may be counting the same robin a dozen times if it flies back and forth for example gathering food.

Look out for other species of wildlife visiting your garden as well – there’s usually space when you submit the results of the birds seen to also do the same if you have seen wild animals as well visiting.

Also the survey when you fill it in, will also ask you a bit about the size of your garden and whether you have things like a pond, trees, wildflower areas etc. for example.

Please do let us at Greener Wokingham, know how you have got on with the garden bird watch, it would be very interesting to know which bird species is the most common and numerous visitor to Wokingham Borough Gardens and also any other wildlife as well.

Tips for attracting birds to your garden:

Provide them food of mixed bird seeds, peanuts, kitchen scraps. Don’t forget also to provide them fresh water in a bowl or shallow dish, ideally that is large enough they can also bathe in but not to deep either. Remember if the water is frozen in your garden to break the ice and put some warm water in to melt the ice, if you are adding to the existing water.

Ensure if you do feed the birds, that this is not done where there’s cats and the birds can escape if needs be into hedges / bushes.

Providing the food in feeders as opposed to straight on the ground, will bring different types of birds visiting your garden, this might be a better option for the feeders if you or your neighbours do have cats.

It usually takes birds a few days to get used to a new food source. Winter is an ideal time to start feeding if you aren’t already.

Good luck and have fun!

Ian Hydon & the Greener Wokingham Admin team.

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