About Nesting Neighbours

As the countryside becomes more and more developed, the nation's gardens play an increasingly important role in supporting British bird populations, providing food, shelter and nesting sites. Numbers of several garden bird species, such as House Sparrow and Starling, have fallen in the last few decades. It is therefore vital that we keep a close eye on bird populations in rural, suburban and urban areas in the same way that we would birds in woodlands and farmland.
Chaffinch. Edmund Fellowes
Chaffinch. Edmund Fellowes 

Why monitor nesting birds?

By asking people to monitor nests in their gardens and local area, we can build up a detailed picture of breeding success in these target habitats. This is needed to help understand why some species are increasing while others are declining, for example whether warmer weather and the provision of food can make a difference to the number of chicks that birds are able to raise.

How to get involved

As soon as you know about an active nest in a box or other site, you can begin telling us about its progress using the online recording forms. With a nest box, you can even begin recording before a nest appears and if the box doesn't end up getting used that will still be useful information on what is called 'occupancy rate'.

Find out more about Taking Part.

Where to get advice on putting boxes up

Read our advice on building nest boxes, and more information on siting, erecting and maintaining nest boxes.

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