UPDATE – Assynt Garden Bird Survey

December 23rd 2023

UPDATE – Assynt Garden Bird Survey

The Assynt Garden Bird Survey, which started in 1997, has provided a wealth of data about the bird species we get in Assynt. We would very much like to continue this work and it would be great if you could help.

We have produced a checklist of the commonest birds you are likely to see in your Assynt garden. All you need to do is record which species you see in your garden each month. You just simply tick if a bird was present in your garden that month. If you have time you could provide more information in the comments section, such as the maximum numbers you saw or the first date the bird occurred.

You can view and download the instructions and recording sheet here-

Assynt Garden Bird Survey Instructions and Recording Sheet (780KB doc) 

or, to have one posted, email assyntwildlife@gmail.com

Your contribution to this ongoing survey, which is now in its 27th year, would be very much appreciated, thank you.

As part of the Assynt Wildlife Records Digitisation Project, which is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Scottish Natural Heritage, we have produced a spreadsheet of the results from 1997-2022 which can be accessed here

Assynt Garden Bird Survey Records 1997-2022 (1000KB xlsx)

Annual Summary

2022

For the year to 31st December 2022 we received results from 15 gardens and these had a combined total of 2353 records!

The results showed that, in every month of the year, Robin occurred in 12 gardens; Goldfinch in 9; Blackbird and Chaffinch in 8, Great Tit in 7; Blue Tit, Coal Tit and Dunnock in 6; Wren and House Sparrow in 5.

The Robin therefore regained the top spot as our most commonly seen garden bird in 2022. The RSPB’s Big Garden Bird Watch has House Sparrow as Scotland’s most numerous garden bird. Of course, we do not count the number of birds, simply their presence.

2021

For the year to 31st December 2021 we received results from 19 gardens and these had a combined total of 2881 records!

The results showed that, in every month of the year, Blackbird occurred in 10 gardens; Robin and Rock Dove in 9; Chaffinch, Dunnock and House Sparrow in 8; Goldfinch, Great Tit and Blue Tit in 7; Coal Tit in 4.

The Blackbird was therefore our most commonly seen garden bird in 2021, knocking Robin off the top spot. The RSPB’s Big Garden Bird Watch has House Sparrow as Scotland’s most numerous garden bird. Of course, we do not count the number of birds, simply their presence.

2020

For the year to 31st December 2020 we received results from 16 gardens and these had a combined total of 2450 records!

The results showed that, in every month of the year, Robin occurred in 11 gardens; Blackbird in 8; Chaffinch, Great Tit, House Sparrow and Rock Dove in 7; Coal Tit and Dunnock in 6; Blue Tit and Goldfinch in 4; Wren , Greenfinch and Collared Dove in 2, and Starling and Bullfinch in 1.

The Robin was once again our most commonly seen garden bird in 2020. The RSPB’s Big Garden Bird Watch has House Sparrow as Scotland’s most numerous garden bird. Of course, we do not count the number of birds, simply their presence.

 

Report a Sighting

Recent Sightings

Manx Shearwater

27 birds off Bay of Clachtoll (DAH) (16/06)

Harbour Porpoise

Mother and calf off Stoer Head Lighthouse (DAH) (15/06)

Small Magpie moth (Anania hortulata)

Single moth in garden, Culkein Drumbeg (DAH). This is only the second ever record of this micro moth in the West Sutherland recording area, VC108. The first record was on 1st June this year in the garden of the County Moth Recorder in Melvich on the north coast. However, this does make it the first ever record for Assynt. Photo Gallery - Moths. (14/06)

Golden Plover

Eight birds over Clachtoll (DAH) (13/06)

Peregrine

Single bird flying over garden, Ardvar (Beccy Garvey) (12/06)

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary

Single butterfly, Nedd (Stefan Taylor) (12/06)

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary

Single butterfly recently emerged at Glen Leraig (AS) (11/06)

Barn Owl

Single bird hunting over croft land, near Stoer primary school (Jane Livingstone) (11/06)

Map