Goldfinch Survey

Date: 2015-11-04 22:22:01 | Category: Bird Watching | Author: David Cole
The British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) has good news and a request for help in their latest newsletter – below is an extract from their November 4th newsletter.

The BTO is a great organization and I’d encourage everyone with an interest in our wild bird populations to join up – or at least help with their survey.

Calling all gardens with Goldfinches

If you have Goldfinches in your garden, you’re probably aware that they’re becoming increasingly common. However the reasons behind this are not yet fully understood, so the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) is running a Goldfinch Feeding Survey this winter to work out, with your help, exactly what it is about our gardens that they are attracted to.

Goldfinches are an increasingly common sight in our gardens with 70% more BTO Garden BirdWatch participants reporting them now than they did twenty years ago. However we don’t actually know what it is that attracts them to gardens, especially during the winter. Therefore your help is needed this winter to find out what Goldfinches are feeding on, whether it’s the bird food we provide, or the plants that we grow.


Clare Simm, the Goldfinch Feeding Survey organiser said,

"It is vital to understand what resources birds are using in our gardens, in order to help them when times are hard. Supplementary feeding in gardens has recently been shown to affect the migratory behaviour of wintering Blackcaps in the UK so it will be fascinating to see if it has also helped the national population of Goldfinches to grow."

Whether you feed the birds or not, if you get Goldfinches please help us by taking part in this survey. All you need to do is count the Goldfinches in your garden for two minutes and record what they are feeding on, if anything.

To find out more about the BTO Goldfinch Feeding Survey or to download the instructions on how to take part, visit

They are only asking for a couple of minutes of your time – and I bet you spend more than that watching your bird tables!!!