Great Garden Bird Watch this weekend – 6th and 7th February 2016

Wood pigeon (2). Photo by Mick DrydenAction for WildlifeProving that a year can come and go very fast, in partnership with Action For Wildlife and the Jersey Evening Post we are once again asking everyone in Jersey to spend a few minutes this weekend to count the birds in their garden.

JEP logo

Blue and great tit on Jersey Great Garden Bird Watch 2002-2015

Blue and great tit on Jersey Great Garden Bird Watch 2002-2015

Wood pigeon on Jersey Great Garden Bird Watch 2002-2015

Wood pigeon on Jersey Great Garden Bird Watch 2002-2015

Analysis of sightings from the previous 14 years makes it very obvious that not all our favourite garden birds are faring so well and populations are changing dramatically. But, how exactly do we know. Well, we count them. In fact, lots and lots of people count them. And not just birdwatchers but everyone who likes birds because, let’s face it, everyone likes birds. And they are often easy to count because they can be pretty obvious especially as they come into our gardens. And it’s in the garden, that Islanders can once again help us understand better what is happening with our birds. Data shown by the survey are very important in highlighting what is happening in our wider environment and, while not covering the whole countryside, results do bring home to everyone wider concerns. Just think, if the birds are doing badly in our gardens where we feed and protect them, what is happening out there in the rest of the world.

So, please, over this weekend follow the guidelines printed below or in this coming Friday’s JEP and tell us what birds you see. We can add up all the counts (we have 14 years’ worth already) and easily pick up changes that are happening right in front of us. Will there be even fewer greenfinches than last year and will wood pigeons have finally taken over our bird tables? Or will squirrels eat all the food! We call this ‘citizen science’ so consider yourself all citizen scientists!

Red squirrel. Photo by Mick DrydenAnd don’t forget. For this survey, squirrels can consider themselves birds so please count them too if you see any.

How to enter the survey

Counters should note the highest number of each species of bird that are seen together at one time during that period – not the total number which enter your garden over the period of the watch.

Survey forms and a handy identification guide will be published in the JEP on Friday the 5th and all data received will be passed on to La Société Jersiaise to add to their records and included in Birds On The Edge bird monitoring analyses.

Completed forms can be posted in or delivered to the JEP. You can also send in your records online through this website here from the weekend. Email your online forms to

Robin (5). Photo by Mick Dryden