Blue tits, goldfinches and great spotted woodpeckers were found in greater abundance by the UK’s biggest citizen science survey this year, despite many bird species being recorded at lower numbers in gardens because of the unusually mild winter.
The top 10 of RSPB’s annual Big Garden Birdwatch has all changed since last year, with blue tits (an average of 2.5 birds seen in 74% of gardens) in their highest position since the annual survey began in 1979, while blackbirds, previously in the second spot with an average of 2.2 seen in 82% of gardens, have dropped to fourth place.
Goldfinches have climbed another place since last year to number seven, while the robin, which has reached number seven in the past, has dropped down to number 10.
And for the first time ever, the great spotted woodpecker has made it into the top 20, with 0.1 birds recorded in 10% of gardens.
Around half a million people took part in the annual survey, which asked people to spend an hour counting birds in their garden or local park during the last weekend of January.