QUIZ: The big bird count - how many can you spot in your garden?

Whether you can spot a robin, a pigeon or a jackdaw, whatever birds you can see in your garden, keep track of your findings this January and join the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch.

“The birds we see in our garden are often the first experience we have with nature – whether it’s a flock of starlings at the bird feeder, a robin perched on the fence or some house sparrows splashing in the bird bath,” says Daniel Hayhow, RSPB conservation scientist.

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“But it may come as a surprise to know that some of our most-loved species are in desperate need of our help as their numbers have dropped dramatically.”

Although last year, Big Garden Birdwatch participants spotted more than eight million birds during the three day spot-athon, bird numbers have been dwindling in recent years.

Worryingly, last year a report from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs found that in all bird species, populations have declined by six per cent since 1970.

Now as part of The Big Garden Birdwatch (Saturday, January 27 to Monday, January 29) the RSPB is asking the public to spend one hour watching and record the birds they see in their garden or local green space to help them keep track of bird populations in the UK.

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The Big Garden Birdwatch is now in its 39th year, and with half a million people now taking part, you too can contribute to the world’s largest garden wildlife survey. Last year, the house sparrow remained top of the rankings, with starlings and blackbirds rounding off the top three.

“The Big Garden Birdwatch is a great opportunity to get involved with helping our garden wildlife,” says Daniel.

“By counting the birds that visit your outdoor space, you’ll be joining a team of over half-a-million people across the UK who are making a difference for nature. It only takes an hour, so grab a cuppa, sit back and see who makes a flying visit to your garden.”

But don’t worry if you don’t spot any feathery friends during your time bird spotting. This isn’t unusual and your results will still provide essential information for the RSPB, and there’s also the opportunity to send feedback on what other kinds of wildlife you spot in your garden.

Daniel adds: “With results from so many gardens, we are able to create a ‘snapshot’ of the birds visiting at this time of year across the UK.”