The RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch is set to bring more than half-a-million people together this weekend (January 27, 28 and 29) as they uncover what is happening in their garden, helping to create an annual snapshot of how UK birds are doing.

To take part in the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 2018, simply spend an hour over the weekend watching the birds in your garden, outdoor space or local park. Once you have recorded the birds that make a visit, whether it’s a starling, sparrow or skylark, submit your results online at

Morwenna Alldis, spokesperson for the RSPB South West said: “The beauty of the Big Garden Birdwatch is that it’s so easy to take part - just one hour to complete. It also gives participants an instant connection to nature and it provides vital data that enables the RSPB to help those species that are struggling the most. If you’re looking to make a positive difference this weekend – the Big Garden Birdwatch is the best thing that you can do.”

Last year close to half-a-million people across the UK took part, making Big Garden Birdwatch the world’s biggest wildlife survey. More than 8.5 million birds were spotted visiting gardens with house sparrow topping the list, along with some other familiar species like robin, blackbird and starling in the top 10.

This year the RSPB is curious to see how these figures will change following a positive year for some resident British birds, such as greenfinch, chaffinch, blue tit, great tit and long-tailed tit. Numbers of greenfinches have been impacted by Trichomonosis for the last decade and the disease has been documented in other garden birds, such as chaffinch.

More recently there was a downward trend in Big Garden Birdwatch sightings of the tit species, which was thought to be linked to the prolonged wet weather in the 2016 breeding season.

However, the 2017 season appeared to be a good one for these resident birds and that combined with the relatively favourable winter weather conditions has fuelled speculation that it could be a bumper weekend of sightings.

In 2017 the house sparrow was the most recorded bird in the recordings through the UK.

When combined with 38 years of data from previous Birdwatches, the RSPB is bettter equipped to monitor trends and understand which birds are struggling and are in need of help.