RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch

Counting for conservation

The RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch is the world's biggest garden wildlife survey.

It regularly attracts almost half a million participants who spend an hour counting the birds that visit their gardens.

The records  provide a vital snapshot of the UK’s birds each winter so the RSPB can monitor trends and find out how our garden birds are doing.

The RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 2021 will take place over three days from the 29th to the 31st January.

Goldfinches At Feeder

How to take part

Spend an hour counting the birds you see in your garden

01

Find a suitable spot from where you can count birds. If you don’t have a garden then you can go to your local park or other green space.

02

Spend an hour counting the birds that you see and make a note of them. You can use pen and paper or the RSPB’s online counting tool. 

03

Count the maximum number of birds you see at any one time. Don’t count the total you see over the hour as you may double-count. So if you see  4 sparrows and then later on another 3, the number you need to submit is 4. 

04

Submit your results via the RSPB’s website. And even if you didn’t see a single bird they still want to know. 

Get Birdwatch ready

All you need to create a garden haven for birds

2020's top 10 birds

485,930 people took part in 2020's Birdwatch counting 7,833,350 birds. Here are the most common birds they spotted.
House Sparrow

House Sparrow

Noisy, gregarious birds. Found all over the UK from farmland to city centres, feeding and breeding near humans. Sharp decline in their populations in recent years.

Starling

Starling

Appears black from afar but has glossy, iridescent green and purple feathers with white spots. Gathers in huge flocks known as murmurations over cities and farmland.

Blue Tit

Blue Tit

Small and acrobatic, visits trees, shrubs and bird tables. Bright blue cap surrounded by white with blue wings and tail and yellow underside.

Wood Pigeon

Wood Pigeon

UK’s largest and commonest pigeon. Mostly grey with a pinkish breast and white neck and wing patches. Shy birds that will not interact with humans.

Blackbird

Blackbird

Males are black with yellow bill and eye ring. Females are brown with spotted breasts. They often raise their tail on landing and have a loud, mellow, fluty song.

Goldfinch

Goldfinch

Brightly coloured with a red face and yellow wing patch. Very active. Can often appear from nowhere feeding in the same place for a few days before disappearing.

Great Tit

Great Tit

The largest of the UK’s tits. Glossy black head and green and yellow body. Can be aggressive towards other birds at feeders. Intelligent birds that can use tools to get food.

Robin

Robin

Britain’s favourite bird known as the gardener’s friend. Distinctive orange breast. Fiercely territorial and may fight to the death. Can be heard singing throughout winter and at night.

Long-Tailed Tit

Long-Tailed Tit

Distinctive pink, and black colouring and tail longer than its body. Gather in excitable flocks of about 20 birds. High-pitched twittering contact calls make will get them noticed.

Magpie

Magpie

Noisy, chattering birds with striking black and white plumage. Highly intelligent they are scavengers and predators that will gather in flocks outside breeding season. .