Something for the Weekend – The Big Garden Birdwatch

Hello and welcome to week four of Something for the Weekend! If you have an idea to share you will find the linky at the bottom of this post. Please link back to me in your post so we can spread the word about our ideas bank and grab the badge if you’d like to.

This weekend me and mine will be taking part in the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch! Here is an edited version of two articles I wrote for the Timberland Family Club all about it!

The Big Garden Birdwatch takes place every year,  it’s easy, it’s free, it only takes and hour to do and the whole family can get involved. Perfect!

The idea is to sit and record all the birds which visit your garden during one hour on either Saturday 29th or Sunday 30th January, you can simply write it on a piece of scrap paper or on a print out of the RSPB’s handy identification sheet. Don’t worry if you don’t have a garden, you can do your bird watch in your local park!

Once your hour is up, record the highest number of each bird species you have seen at any one time and report your findings to the RSPB. This is a good opportunity to brush up on your knowledge of British garden birds and if you’re not sure what you are looking at the RSPB have an easy to use bird identifier to help!

The RSPB has been collecting this information for over 30 years and uses it to get a clear picture of bird numbers throughout the UK. The findings have shown a dramatic decline in numbers for some bird species such as house sparrows and starlings and enable the RSPB to spot problems, highlight them and begin to help aid recovery.

We will be doing our watch on Sunday and we are going to spend some of Saturday making bird feeders to encourage more avian visitors to pop in to be observed.

The easiest bird feeder to make is also one children love because they get to eat some of the left overs! Simply pop some popping corn into a heavy bottomed saucepan with a little sunflower oil, cover with a lid and heat until the corn pops, shaking the pan occasionally to stop any sticking.

Once the corn has cooled thread it onto cotton with a needle, tie off the end, hang from a tree branch or bird table and watch to see who comes visiting! While you are waiting you can scoff the remaining corn because, somehow, there is always a lot left over!

For other bird feeding ideas have a look at the RSPB website which has some great tips and suggestions for helping birds through the winter with a recipe for speedy bird cake and instructions showing you how to make a recycled bird feeder.

If you want a good book to use with kids the RSPB’s First Book of Garden Birds is very useful

As is their Children’s Guide to Birdwatching

Don’t forget Binoculars to add to the fun!

If you want some more great family friendly activities have a look at the Timberland Family Club, their writer is fabulous! (I write all the copy and supply most of the images!)

Now it’s link up time! Please add a link to any blog post you have written, recently or historically, which will give us all ideas for things to do with children at the weekend! Link back here in your post please!

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Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…(I will then manually input them on the post as WordPress isn’t keen on Linkys and won’t show them in the main body of the post, this is my way round that little problem!)

1. Start Your Calendar: Winter Scene – Red Ted

2. Love Heart Cookies – Yummy Scrummy – Red Ted

3. Paper Roses

4. Ashes to Splashes with Parklover

5. Printable Bird Play Set

6. Ever Been Geocaching?

7. In the Night Garden Live Show by Mummy Mishaps


Filed under Books For Kids, Crafts, family life, Rainy Day Play, Something for the Weekend, Things To Do Which Don't Involve A Screen

6 responses to “Something for the Weekend – The Big Garden Birdwatch

  1. Jenny paulin

    That’s a great thing to do. We don’t get many birds in our backyard, but if we visit the Oh’s parents Burton and I can do a bird watch there as it’s very peaceful and gets lots of feather ed visitors.

  2. Lovely idea. I’m interested in the books too, as I mentioined in my post, I think the time is right to invest in a wildlife book so that me and CJ can identify beasties we spot on our jaunts.

  3. My Dad is joining in with this over the weekend. He and Mum feed the birds everyday and they now have so many that come to visit. He’s also an avid birdwatcher anyway so he’s very excited! Unfortunately P is a little too young to join in at the moment, she has a tendency to shout with excitement and scare them all away!

  4. What a lovely idea! I’ll definitely try this out with my two this weekend xxx

  5. I love this though attracting birds into our garden is a no go as my two cats would think it was there own mcdonalds.

    • We have two cats too but they are pretty lazy and there seems to be room for both (we have had the odd bird and mouse in I have to admit but there are fewer as the cats age!)

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