On both sides of the Atlantic, the season of garden bird counts is fast approaching. These annual counts, in which anyone can take part, are really very simple: you just count the birds you see in your garden for a short time on one day - and send in your totals. Couldn’t be easier.
But why? Two reasons. Firstly, it will help you get to know the birds in your garden better. And secondly, your count helps scientists understand the way bird populations are changing and highlights problems with individual species.
In the North America, the Great Backyard Bird Count is run by the Audubon Society, and this year takes place next month, 18-21 February. You can register at the Great Backyard Bird Count website. Last year over 97,000 people sent in their lists and 11,233,609 birds were counted.
In Britain, the Big Garden Birdwatch is run by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and takes place this coming weekend, 29 & 30 January. And you even get a 10% discount on bird food when you register at the Big Garden Birdwatch website. Over the years 280,000 gardens have sent in their counts.
We’ll be counting here in Pennsylvania next month. I’ll let you know our results.
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