Small birds suffered in Welsh winter weather
The annual RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch took place on the last weekend of January and over 27,000 people in Wales took part. The elongated spell of cold weather Wales endured has meant a reduction in the number of small-bodied birds seen in over 14,500 gardens across the country.
Long-tailed tit by Andrew Davies
The cold snap also meant that species that normally don't venture into urban areas were drawn into our gardens in search of food. Fieldfares, redwings, bullfinches and yellowhammers were among the species which "visit our gardens for food when they can't find enough in their usual haunts" according to RSPB Cymru's Dana Thomas.
"We were particularly concerned for small birds over the winter, asking people to make sure that they kept feeders topped up and supplied fresh water to help them." she says. "These results highlight the importance of feeding and gardening for wildlife, especially during prolonged cold periods."
Continuing their steady decline in numbers over the years were house sparrows and blue tits.
One species, however, bucked the trend. Blackcaps were up in numbers, perhaps illustrating a changing behaviour and willingness to visit garden feeders, according to Thomas.