Photo with kind permission of Mike Kerry

Are you using your lockdown days to learn more about the birds in your garden? If so we have some ideas to help you.

Birds aren’t always easy to spot, but can often be heard, especially during the dawn chorus. Maybe you could even get up extra early to have a listen? How many birdsongs do you think you would recognise? Local, Mike Kerry has devised a brilliant birdsong quiz, which can be found on the Seaford Natural History society website. Do give it a go!

If you enjoy counting the birds you spot, then you may be interested in joining the BTO who are offering free membership options during this lockdown time.

During the lockdown, many of us are looking to our gardens to enjoy nature and be outdoors, to learn, and to improve our well-being. BTO Garden BirdWatch offers a great opportunity to learn more about garden birds and other wildlife, and to contribute directly to BTO’s important scientific research on the value of gardens for wildlife. 

 By understanding more about how wildlife uses our gardens, we’ll be able to make our cities, towns, villages and individual gardens better for nature.

 To take part you simply keep a list of the birds you see visiting your garden over the course of a week, then enter this into our online recording system. If you want, you can also record other garden wildlife, such as butterflies and mammals.

 Your sightings will help us to understand how and why populations of garden birds and other wildlife are changing, and how we can all help them.

 This free offer includes access to our online recording system, a regular Garden BirdWatch e-newsletter with information on recording and identifying garden wildlife, and access to our team of wildlife experts to answer your questions on garden wildlife.


the dunnock is a common garden visitor!

I’ve really been enjoying these brilliant daily blogs from Michael Blencowe, Learning and Engagement Officer with Sussex Wildlife Trust. It just shows you that there is always something to see and do in your own garden. The blog includes observations of foxes, butterflies, fungi and birds. It also covers projects such as planting meadows, building ponds, and making bee boxes!

Over a few weekends he has also organised a couple of back garden bird races! This is where during a set hour, everybody tries to spot as many species as possible in/from their garden. Birds that you hear, or see fly over, count too! It was great to see lots of people joining in with this, from all over the world!

There is a logo and app to record your findings. The records are then collated and added to the seven million wildlife records held by the Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre to help them find out more about bird distribution in Sussex.

If you were at our March network meeting, you will remember Michael’s wife Clare who kindly told us all about the Record Centre and how we can all get involved with recording wildlife. Clare took over one of the daily lockdown blogs, with a fascinating account of fungi! I’ll be looking at any spots on my fennel much more closely this week!

Many thanks to Mike and Michael and all those cheering up our lockdown days!

This week I discovered a lizard, a family of slowworms, a web of brown tail moth caterpillars, a half made robin nest in my pegbag and my first holly blue butterfly.

Do let us know what you have discovered near you, we would love to hear from you.