Mid and East Antrim Borough Council has been working with local residents and schools as part of the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch.
The initiative, now in its 43rd year, is the world’s largest garden wildlife survey and helps monitor how garden birds are faring. It encouraged people to note bird life in parks, gardens and open spaces over the weekend and to submit their findings online by the end of February.
Children from Kells & Connor Primary School who took part in a bird and wildlife walk where they learned all about local and migratory birds. The children also had great fun building nest boxes for their local birds, to give them cosy homes for this Spring’s nesting season, which is already starting.
In Bashfordsland Wood & Oakfield Glen Local Nature Reserve in Carrickfergus, people enjoyed a stroll through the woods with local bird expert Aidan Crean, to learn all about birds and other wildlife. The group also built bird boxes to give the birds support and extra nesting space.
Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr William McCaughey, said: “The Big Garden Birdwatch is a chance for everyone to actively help nature and council is backing the campaign. The results each year help build a picture of wildlife across the country which is important for conservation efforts. Last year, more than one million people all over the UK counted over 17 million birds. Setting some quiet time aside to watch your local wildlife and get outside does not only benefit conservation and science, but can also be beneficial to your mental and physical health as you will spend time outside, either by yourself or with your friends or family, to concentrate on nature at your doorstep.
“These events are part of Council’s #embRACE programme which celebrates diversity in Mid and East Antrim. Delivered by Council’s Good Relations Programme, the initiative continues to develop mutual understanding, respect for cultural traditions, the principle of interdependence and positive cross-community and positive race relations throughout the borough. Only by working together can we truly help our local environments flourish.”
If you took part in the Big Garden Birdwatch, submit your results here