Families asked to monitor garden birds this summer - with the chance to get creative

11 Aug 2020 | No. 2020-23

Love birds? Love drawing? The British Trust for Ornithology’s summer project gives families a great reason to watch garden birds together, and the chance to win a pair of compact binoculars for the best garden bird drawing! Garden BirdWatch (GBW) is a scientific project that monitors birds in gardens, but it’s also a great activity for families to do together. The project involves watching, counting, drawing and writing, and is open to children aged 5 to 11.

BTO’s Garden BirdWatch is a weekly wildlife survey which has been running for 25 years, with 20,000 active members. Through the survey BTO scientists have been able to see the changing fortunes of garden wildlife, helping to understand how gardens can be made friendlier and more beneficial for wildlife.

Through this project families can learn to identify garden birds, and will notice the patterns in their gardens, such as which birds feed in groups or on their own or what food they prefer to eat, and will report all of this information back to BTO. 

At the end of the summer BTO are asking children to take a look back at their counts, and to draw a picture and write a sentence about the bird they have seen most often. The best pictures will be shared on the GBW website, and the very best will win a prize of a pair of compact Opticron Savanna binoculars, with ten runners-up receiving a Gardman Paint Your Own feeder to hang in the garden.

Debbie Lee, Head of Engagement at BTO, said “We are excited to share BTO Garden BirdWatch with families and can’t wait to see the information and the drawings submitted to us. By showing how important and exciting our garden wildlife is, we hope that their fascination will carry on into adulthood, fostering an interest in nature and the importance of environmental science.“

For more information, please visit https://www.bto.org/our-science/projects/garden-birdwatch/how-take-part/garden-birdwatch-drawing-competition

Contact Details
Paul Stancliffe
(BTO Media Manager)
Mobile: 07585 440910
Email: press [at] bto.org ()

Images are available for use alongside this News Release. Please contact images [at] bto.org quoting reference 2020 – 23

Notes to editors

Garden BirdWatch is designed to find out how, when and why birds and other animals use our gardens. Participants send in weekly lists of garden birds and other wildlife, which are are analysed by scientists working under the BTO's urban and garden ecology research programmes, to investigate the links between changes in wildlife populations and factors such as garden management, food, weather and urban structure. www.bto.org/gbw

The BTO is the UK's leading bird research charity. A growing membership and up to 60,000 volunteer birdwatchers contribute to the BTO's surveys, collecting information that underpins conservation action in the UK. The BTO maintains a staff of 100 at its offices in Thetford, Stirling, Bangor (Wales) and Belfast (Northern Ireland), who analyse and publicise the results of surveys and projects. The BTO's work is funded by BTO supporters, government, trusts, industry and conservation organisations. www.bto.org

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