Credit: natur&ëmwelt

Luxembourg environmental non-profit organisation natur&ëmwelt has announced that it is organising its annual Garden Birdcount from Friday 28 to Sunday 30 January 2022.

During the last weekend in January, everyone gets the chance to be a citizen scientist. Members of the public in Luxembourg (and throughout Europe) are asked to devote one hour to counting the birds in their garden.

Such events encourage people who would normally never regard themselves as scientists to contribute data which, when aggregated and compared over a long period of time, yield scientifically significant results.

According to natur&ëmwelt, what we know, for example, from decades of the Garden Birdcount in Luxembourg is that the house sparrow is still, despite recent declines, the most numerous bird in our gardens, although it is not really the most common. We know this because last year's observers counted around 6,700 house sparrows - far more than any other species in terms of sheer number. However, house sparrows are not everywhere: they were present in only 75% of the surveyed gardens. Great tits, on the other hand, were present in 82% of gardens, closely followed by blackbirds, in 80% of gardens. The house sparrow came third in this ranking, followed by the blue tit and the robin.

How it works

Participants designate an hour on any day between 28 and 30 January as their Birdcount hour. During this hour, they note down all the birds they see and the maximum number of each species seen at any one moment (not a cumulative total).

Participants should then fill out the form on the natur&ëmwelt website (only available during the Birdcount weekend itself) and return it, preferably online, to natur&ëmwelt's Centrale Ornithologique (ornithological centre) by 11 February 2022. The form is available in English, French and Luxembourgish.