Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch

On Saturday 25th January about 14 amateur ‘Twitchers’ took part in the RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch in Ryde Cemetery, which is now an annual event; the weather was dry but chilly which led a number of us to wonder ‘why in January’. The birds seemed fewer in number and variety than in previous years, so maybe they find it too cold to venture out. A flock of about 80 starlings flying over boosted our count somewhat and we are not sure if seagulls should count as they aren’t garden birds, but they were in abundance too.

We had a number of non-members join us, for around an hour each, including one who although has lived in Ryde for 40 years, had never ventured into the cemetery previously. Our members working at the centre, (now warmed by new over door heaters), offered hot soup and French bread alongside tea and coffee, which was most welcome.

Between us we observed blackbirds, sparrows, collared doves, robins, magpies, rooks, chaffinches, coal tit, great tit, long tailed tit and blue tit. Dunnocks, starlings, thrushes, wrens, pigeons and crows finish the list.

We will be submitting these to the RSPB. We were very pleased to have taken part once again in this vital survey.

Photographs by Coliin Hunt & Dave Bushell