Big Garden Birdwatch – 2016 results – A bumper bird bonanza!

Before we start with the results, a couple of important confessions.

Firstly, most of the photos you will see here were not taken during the actual birdwatch. As you may know, I had planned on using a remote camera trained on a feeder. The technology worked perfectly, as you can see here:

An in-focus birdfeeder

An in-focus birdfeeder

Perfectly in-focus and clear. Unfortunately, for the hour I had it setup, nothing landed there! The closest I got was this Robin:

_DSC3021 (2)

So, technology didn’t fail me, the birds did. Which leads onto the second confession…

The count here was initially taken between about 9:25am and 10:25am. But in the ten minutes after 10:25 we had a flurry of birds. So, full disclosure, the count was shifted a little to take those birds in. Not really cheating, still just an hour, and more representative anyway.

The winner - Will they make it four years in 2017?

The winner – Will they make it four years in 2017?

As a majority of you predicted in Friday’s poll, the Starlings carried on their dominance of the count, topping the list for the third year in a row. Numbers increased again too, up to 12 this time.

Siskins and Goldfinches

Siskins and Goldfinches

Siskins made a welcome return to the garden last week, and ended up as a shock second place with five individuals (two males, three females) counted. My friendly and confiding female from last weekend was the first bird down after I’d topped the feeders up.

Waiting to be fed

Waiting to be fed

Goldfinches and Greenfinches all made an appearance, though not at peak numbers.

The local Bullfinch pair even made an appearance, always welcome.



Male waiting his turn

Male waiting his turn

Overall it was a very good weekend, with 12 species in the count itself. Within the hour after the count there were also Coal, Long-tailed and Great Tits, along with three Collared Doves.



There was also one really unusual drop-in after the completed count:

_DSC3201 (2)

Black-headed gulls are numerous around the area, but they do not like to land in confined gardens. They’ll circle from time-to-time when they see food, but they’ve never landed. But as we see here, one young bird from last year had a bit more courage and was amply rewarded.

So, the final count was

Robin 2

Woodpigeon 4

Starling 12

Siskin 5

Blackbird 2

Goldfinch 4

Wren 1

Dunnock 1

Magpie 1

Crow 1

Blue Tit 2

Greenfinch 3

All of which adds another series of points to the graph. Will the Starlings continue this upsurge? We’ll see in 366 days time.


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5 Responses to Big Garden Birdwatch – 2016 results – A bumper bird bonanza!

  1. Emily Scott says:

    Glad to see plenty of starlings, when you look at them closely they are a pretty bird with all their subtle colours and dotted patterns.

  2. Gill says:

    Why was the results sheet different from the sheet I downloaded. When I came to submit my results I noticed there were more birds listed for me to record than the page I downloaded. 12 more in fact. I made a comment on this on the results page but so far no one has responded. Surely I am not the only one to have noticed this. The birds that were missing from the recording sheet but on the results sheet were Feral Pigeon, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Wren, Common Gull, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Rook, Pheasant, Bullfinch and Jay. It was quite apparent when comparing the downloaded page and the results page that some of the photos were the same so why was there a difference in the two. I also did not like the new recording page, let alone that it was incorrect as before you had the picture of the bird and a grid with 24 little squares which made it easy to fill in and then that particular bird had been counted. I am not the only one as there are comments on other forums regarding the new form. Not everyone has a tablet or computer on which to record the birds, I like to do it with a pen and paper. Could this be reconsidered for next year as I did have to contact RSPB as I could not find the counting sheet and was sent the link which was what I downloaded only to find that when I had finished the results page had more birds on it than my recording page, hence my results were not wholly accurate. Surely in order to gauge numbers then the same birds should feature every year. Please look into this and reply to me by email.

    • David says:

      Hi Gill. I’m afraid I don’t work for the RSPB so I can’t really help you out.

      Personally I never use the recording sheets, I just make my own notes then use the website. I’d agree that it’s a shame if the recording sheet isn’t fit for purpose.

  3. Pingback: The Big Garden Birdwatch 2017 – Are you ready? | Why watch wildlife?

  4. Pingback: Rspb Birdwatch Results 2016 | Kreativenews | Post

I welcome thoughts, comments and questions, so please feel free to share anything at all. Thanks, David

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