Get involved with the RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch and look out for these birds in your garden this weekend
Each year RSPB hosts their Big Garden Bird Watch to get a count of bird sightings in the public’s gardens around the UK. This vital information can give them great insight into how different bird species are fairing year on year. So we’ve come up with a list of 15 birds that you might be able to see in your garden this weekend. You can request an official Big Garden Bird Watch pack directly from RSPB to get involved officially. Over 500,000 submit their results annually, and all you need to do is spend some time watching your garden and counting the different species of birds that land there! If you’re looking to attract more birdlife into your garden, it’s worth considering the following:
Birds to look out for in your garden:
1. House Sparrow
Perhaps unsurprisingly the most common bird spotted in UK gardens during the bird watch in 2017, the House Sparrow is a bird that we all recognise. Although a common spot, these birds have actually seen quite a severe decline in England.
Find out more about the House Sparrow at RSPB’s website.
When is a Blackbird not a Blackbird? When it’s female. Female Blackbirds’ despite their name are a brown colour. They’re usually very easy to spot and will often be caught foraging for worms, insects and berries.
Find out more about the Blackbird on the RSPB website
Male and Female Starlings are helpfully similar in looks, although they look black from a distance, they actually have a much glossier look on closer inspection. The second most common bird seen in last year’s bird watch with over 1.8 million breeding pairs in the UK. Usually found hunting out fruit and invertebrates.
Find out more about the Starling on the RSPB website
4. Blue Tit
One of most recognisable birds on the list, the blue tit’s striking colours make this little bird relatively easy to spot. Part of the ‘tit’ family of birds, but the most common of them all. Loves to eat: seeds, nuts, caterpillars and insects.
Find out more about the Blue Tit on RSPB website
With their unmistakable call, we’ve probably all seen or at least heard a woodpigeon in our garden at some point or another. A large bird at roughly 40cm in length, the Woodpiegon is always on the lookout for green crops like cabbages, sprouts, peas as well as the usual seeds nuts and berries.
Find out more about the Woodpigeon at RSPB’s website
Chatty and brightly coloured, you might mistake that red face for a bashful hue, but it’s more likely to be red with how grumpy they can often be. Goldfinches love seeds but often migrate as far south as Spain during winter.
Find out more about the Goldfinch at RSPB website
One of the UK’s most loved birds, and probably the one that we could all recognise no matter how much knowledge of birds we had. Despite being associated with winter and Christmas, Robin’s will sing most of the year.
Find out more about the Robin at RSPB’s website.
8. Great Tit
Often mistaken for a Blue Tit, the Great Tit is the largest of the family. Joining up with other members of the tit family in winter to scour gardens looking for food. However the Great Tit can be quite aggressive when it comes to protecting the bird table to keep the food for itself.
Find out more about the Great Tit at RSPB’s website
Shy feeders, the Chaffinch will avoid bird tables and opt for foraging on the ground where it likes to blend in. You’re more likely to spot this common UK bird when it’s flying thanks to the distinctive patterns on it’s wings.
Find out more about the Chaffinch at RSPB website
10. Long-Tailed Tit
Easily recognised by it’s pretty colouring, the Long-Tailed tit is recognisable by having a tail longer than it’s short body. Usually found in groups, this noisy little bird can cause quite a stir as it looks for insects to eat.
Find out more about Long-Tail Tits at RSPB website
One of the most recognisable birds in the UK, whether you’re saluting a solo magpie, or reeling off the popular nursery rhyme to work out where your luck lays when they come visiting. Their striking looks and size make them easy to spot, just try to ignore this scavenger’s bad reputation (at least for this weekend).
Find out more about the Magpie at RSPB’s website.
Your seeds bring all the Greenfinch to the yard, these colourful little birds LOVE to eat seeds. Striking in colour, the Greenfinch is a regular visit to gardens and bird feeders.
Find out more about Greenfinch at RSPB’s website
13. Collared Dove
It doesn’t take much to beckon down the Collared Dove from above. Their trademark coo is likely something you’ve heard a lot in or near your garden. Easy to decipher thanks to the collar around their necks that gives them their name, they’re often found alone or in pairs, these doves are on the lookout for seeds, shoots and buds. Sorry gardeners.
Find out more about Collared Doves on the RSPB website
A quiet an unassuming character the Dunnock will often be found in flowerbeds keeping itself hidden. Not the most colourful bird on the list, but one to keep an eye out for as it moves nervously around your garden.
Find out more about the Dunnock at RSPB website
The Jackdaw is a small member of the crow family that often nests in chimneys or brickwork. The silver looking feathers on it’s head make it noticeable among crows.
Find out more about the Jackdaw at RSPB’s website
Found a bird that’s not on this list? No problem, make sure you check out the RSPB Bird Identifier which can help narrow down what you’ve seen.