Birdwatch News Archive
In a good year for the species, your garden berry bushes could attract Waxwings, but they are particularly good for winter thrushes, too. Photo: Steve Young (www.birdsonfilm.com).
Berries and birds survey
Posted on: 04 Sep 2012
Do birds use the berry bushes in your garden in the autumn? If so, you can help the BTO by contributing your observations in a new survey.
Many birds take advantage of the berries that form part of nature's autumn bounty. Some of these berries may last into the new year, providing much-needed resources for wintering thrushes, Starlings and Blackcaps, but our knowledge of which berries are used and when is still patchy.
The BTO has asked for help from the public to increase the understanding of how birds use garden berries, as well as to answer key questions on which berry-producing plants are best for birds in gardens.
The winter-long study begins on Sunday 30 September and has three components, the first of which looks at berry availability throughout the winter; the second examines how quickly berries are removed from plants and the third looks at which birds take berries. The BTO hopes that members of the public will contribute to all three components, but any contribution will be welcome.
Free survey packs, containing more information on the survey, recording forms and advice on making your garden more attractive to birds, are being sent out just ahead of the start date. If you would like to take part in the study or find out more about the project then please email the BTO or call call 01842 750050 .
Advice on selecting berry-producing plants for the garden can be found here and you can learn about how plants use birds to disperse their seeds by looking here.
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