Curlews' Feathers

#Gardenbirdrace FAQs


Frequently Asked Questions

Please read these FAQs to ensure that you have understood the nature of the competition.
Q. Do I have to use the full 24 hour period?
A. No use as much or as little as you think you need to post a winning score.

Q. Are you adjusting the score for inland or coastal gardens.
A. No. You live where you live.

Q. Can I raise money for charity by getting people to sponsor me?
A. That’s a great idea, definite yes.

Q. Do I have to nominate a named driver?
A. No. This is a solo (or at best shared with anyone you are currently locked down with) venture. If you mean can I sit in my car and record birds from there. Only if the car is on your drive which is also attached to your garden. I understand it can sometime feel a bit weird standing out front with bins.

Q. How far can I go from the garden/house combo. and still count the birds I see?
A. Zero distance -clue is in the title.

Q. Can I stand on tiptoes to see into a neighbour’s garden?
A. Yes. Unless they are out sunbathing.

Q. Can I go up a ladder and sit on the roof?
A. You can, but it is not encouraged as the risk of needing a hospital bed and missing part of the birding day and giving your competitors an advantage is quite high.

Q. While in the garden can I also count hymenoptera, coleoptera, lepidoptera, odonata or arachnids.
A. As long as these species don’t get added to your bird list ‘by mistake’ the answer is yes, yes, yes, if you have to, and yes.

Q. If I find a rare bird does it have to be accepted by BBRC before it can go on my gardenbirdrace list?
A. No primarily because if you find a BBRC rarity you are not going to give two figs about this competition.

Q. If I find a rare breeding bird in my garden can I mark it on my list but not tell competitors what I have found?
A. Any suspected rare breeding bird should be reported to UKRBBP and its location not disclosed. They will contact the gardenbirdrace team to validate the requirement of one tick on your list with no species against it.

Q. Should I record my sightings in a notebook or on my birdtrack app?
A. It is well know that bird racers by 4pm have forgotten if they recorded and counted Greenfinch at 5am. A notebook always allows a person to claim three days later that they won because they missed that one species. Birdtrack does the opposite it prevents you entering a species twice. The choice is purely personal but it would be great to get these records on birdtrack.

Q. Do I have to photograph or draw all the birds I see?
A. If you are doing a full 24 hrs you have a lot of time to kill, so yes that would be a good idea.

Q. If I see or hear a Turtle Dove can I tell Jonny Rankin via @step_dove?
A Defo.

Q. Do I have to stop at 8pm to clap for carers?
A. No. Its Saturday not Thursday.

Q. If I notice some of my family are suffering emotionally from the lockdown and this gardenbirdrace is not for them what can I do?
A. There are a number of helpful resources at and may be helpful.

Q. Is there a prize?
A. Yes. I have been in touch with the Football Association. As it looks like there is a delay or postponement of the F.A. Cup they will loan the trophy to this competition. Scottish F.A. are yet to respond.

Q. Can I add species I would like to see in my garden to my #gardenbirdrace list?
A. What? Baz, who’s writing these FAQs? No definitely no.

Q. What happens if the lockdown ends before 16th May?
A. You have committed to the competition.

Q. Can I do it on a different day as I am busy on the 16th and i can pretend it was done on the 16th?
A. No. Busy? Doing what?