Kingston University Biodiversity Action Group

08-02-2016: Counting Birds and Bashing Rhodo

Recycling our 2015 count sheets this year!
 Between the 29th January and the 1st February, voluteers were busy spotting birds and bashing Rhodo through some very interesting weather.

We challenged biodiversity volunteers to undertake the RSPB's Big Garden Bird Watch at all of our sites.

Despite the bad weather for much of the four day count, we were really lucky and had a great uptake, with people seeing birds even with gusting gales (though sometimes it was tricky!).

Peak a boo!

We just missing out on 100% coverage of our sites but managed to achieve what we did through the dedication of staff and students from different facilities, including a new survey teams at St Georges and the Surrey Club joining our survey efforts. Library and Learning Services (who are also part of the Library Environmental Action Force Green Team) were still in a brilliant position to survey the most number of sites, which they did covering 3 sites between them over the course of the 4 days we did the count.
Elevated views

Smiling despite the rain!

Indoor surveys count too!
The staff and children of KU nursery also took part in the count. They also went a step further by adding a feeding station to the nursery and the count even inspired some of their art work based on the birds that they saw on the day.

We had some fun setting a bird count challenge to a school in Dorset – Wimborne First School to see if they could complete a count and also get people to do the count at home.
There's one!

On Saturday the 20th, we ran our second Rhodo Bash of the year. We concentrated on small regrown which could be easily missed by teams removing larger plants, aiming to clear the lower slope pictured below of all of the regrowth, before moving onto bigger specimens of this invasive plant.
Targeting system active
Clearing the rhodo
During our lunch break, the volunteers got busy counting birds around Kingston Hill, through some were still a bit fast to identify, better weather allowed more to be spotted before we finished cutting, dragging stock piling and clearing up for the day.
Lunch break
Starting small

but making great progress in a day!

Spot the difference :) 
End of a hard days work
Further to the bird count, the younger members  Next week we'll post up the results from the KU and Winbourne counts so that you'll be able to compare the counts in our Town verse's Country Bird off, but until then I'll leave you with some images drawn by the children of Winborne First School, inspired by their count.

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