Top birds named but numbers drop
THE STARLING rules the roost in Suffolk it was reported today, following the results of the RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch.Over 7000 people took part in the survey in Suffolk, with over 300,000 people joining in across the country.
THE STARLING rules the roost in Suffolk it was reported today, following the results of the RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch.
Over 7000 people took part in the survey in Suffolk, with over 300,000 people joining in across the country.
The average Suffolk garden has around 5 starlings, higher than the national figure.
Despite being Suffolk's number one bird, alarmingly, numbers of starlings in Britain have actually plummeted since the first Garden Birdwatch in 1979, when an average of 10 birds were seen per garden.
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The numbers of Suffolk's garden bird champion are declining sharply all over the UK, as are numbers of house sparrows, which flew in at second place.
Steve Rowland, from the Big Garden Birdwatch in Suffolk, said:
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"The RSPB is delighted with the level of participation for this year's event in Suffolk.
"This demonstrates the interest and concern people have for the birds around them.
"It is essential that surveys like this continue to gather important scientific information if we are to reverse the decline of our best loved garden birds, such as the starling and house sparrow."
The number of starlings and house sparrows since 1979 has declined by 67% and 52% respectively.
The RSPB is launching a survey to find out about house sparrows in the UK and the reasons behind their declining numbers.
To take part in the survey call the RSPB's house sparrow hotline on 08706010215 or write to RSPB, Sparrowatch 2003, FREEPOST ANG10850, 17 Birkheads Road, Reigate, RH2 9SP.
Starlings are Britain's most common resident bird.
They are joined by visiting birds that fly south from North and Eastern Europe for the winter.
Starlings have a long unmusical call with a mixture of trills and rattles, and they are known for imitating other birds and even machinery.
A group of starlings can be known as a chattering, murmuration, flight, gathering, hosting or roost.
House sparrows got their name due to the fact they are almost always to be found living close to human habitation.
In groups they are called either a host or a tribe.