DUDLEY residents are being encouraged to spot birds this weekend as part of the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch.

With the current freezing temperatures likely to drive more birds into gardens in their search for food, there could be bumper numbers of garden birds ready to be spotted in the 34th annual wildlife survey.

Over the weekend, people are being urged to spend just one hour noting down the highest number of each bird species seen at any one time then submitting their results to the RSPB.

Fen Gerry from the RSPB, said: ‘No matter where people take part, we’re joining forces to gather vital information about some of our most familiar garden birds.

"It’s a great way to get to know the creatures that live around us, and that’s especially important for children.”

Over the last three decades, starlings and sparrows have declined in number, but blue tits, great tits and coal tits have steadily increased since 1979.

For more information and to download a counting sheet, visit rspb.org.uk/birdwatch