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British Trust for Ornithology – Surveys 2022

I am always seeking help from birders to help with a variety of surveys each year in Suffolk.

If anyone wishes to take part in BTO surveys, please do not hesitate to contact me:

Mick Wright Regional Representative for the BTO

BTO/JNCC/RSPB Breeding Birds Survey (BBS)

This is a key survey and is a well-established method of monitoring populations. The BBS simply involves two bird survey visits (plus a habitat visit) to a randomly-selected 1km square during the breeding season, with two 1km transects across the square being walked. Observer consistency is important, so the aim is for the same observer to survey the same square on, as far as possible, the same dates each year and at the same time of day (avoiding poor weather conditions).

Since 1997 the number of squares surveyed in Suffolk has been around 45/50. This represents just over 1% of the county’s area. It would of course be excellent to increase this coverage to around 60 squares. Nationally, the survey results give very robust results, which now have a significant influence on government policy.

Many thanks to all existing surveyors your time and effort is much appreciated. New volunteers are always welcome, so please contact me if you think you would like to take on a square.

TL6465 Newmarket TL6467 Snailwell TL7156 near Lidgate, southeast of Newmarket TL7469 west of Cavenham TL7552 between Stradishall and Denston TL7577 Rake Heath, Mildenhall TL7658 Baxter’s Green, near Hargrave TL7750 south of Stansfield TL7987 Brandon TL8154 west of Brockley

TL8547 near Glemsford TL8673 near Ampton TL8985 northeast of Thetford

TL9354 near Cockfield

TL9562 Near Beyton

TM0832 South of East Bergholt

TM0957 Creeting St Mary

TM1278 between Stustan and Palgrave

TM1573 Cranley, near Eye TM1473 Eye

TM1573 South of Eye

TM1674 East of Eye

TM2560 Brandeston

TM2870 south of Laxfield TM3059 Hacheston

TM3080 Metfield TM3168 Badingham TM3255 Campsea Ash TM3265 near Bruisyard TM3367 near Bruisyard TM3459 near Little Glemham TM3473 Heveningham TM3772 south of Walpole TM4165 west of Theberton TM4168 between Yoxford and Middleton

TM4263 west of Leiston

TM4274 Blackheath

TM4574 Blythburgh

TM4675 Blythburgh

TM4777 west of Reydon

TM4976 Reydon Marshes

TM5181 west of Covehithe

Lots of details on this survey, including a link to the vacant square tool can be found on the BTO website


Taking part in BirdTrack is easy and fun. You simply provide some information about yourself, the sites where you go birdwatching, when you go birdwatching and most importantly, the birds you identify! BirdTrack allows you to store all of your bird, mammal, Butterflies, Orchids and reptile records in a safe, easily accessible and interactive format.

To participate in BirdTrack you need to do the following:

  • Go birdwatching and note all the species that you see.

  • Go to the BirdTrack web site and register an account. If you have taken part in any other online survey organised by the BTO then please use your existing username and password.

  • Enter the location of your chosen site(s) or select from a popular site.

  • Enter the date and time of your visit and the site you visited.

  • Record the species you saw or heard on your visit.

BirdTrack is an exciting project, through a partnership between the BTO, the RSPB, Birdwatch Ireland, the Scottish Ornithologists' Club and the Welsh Ornithological Society, that looks at migration movements and distributions of birds throughout Britain and Ireland. BirdTrack provides facilities for observers to store and manage their own personal records as well as using these to support species conservation at local, regional, national and international scales.

The success of BirdTrack relies on your birdwatching lists. Simply make a note of the birds you see, either out birdwatching or from the office or garden for example, and enter your daily observations on a simple-to-use web page or via the free App for iPhone and Android devices. We need to gather a large number of lists at all times of the year from throughout Britain and Ireland. We prefer complete lists of birds (all species seen and heard) because the proportion of lists with a given species provides a good measure of frequency of occurrence that can be used for population monitoring. Incomplete lists and casual records can also be entered because they too build our understanding of populations, distributions and movements.

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