The GBFS is a relatively small project, so it is funded from BTO resources and, hence, no contribution to costs is required. However, this does mean that participation is limited to approximately 250 gardens each year, selected carefully from pre-existing participants in the larger, year-round BTO Garden BirdWatch survey. Gardens are chosen to ensure good geographical coverage across the UK and an approximately equal split between rural and suburban gardens. Each year, a few GBFS participants drop out and suitable replacement gardens are identified from among the membership of BTO Garden BirdWatch.

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