The studies done by Queensland University and the University of Exeter showed that there was a correlation between the number of birds people could see outside and their levels of stress and anxiety. It suggested that seeing larger numbers of birds in your garden in the afternoon could lower depression and make us feel happier!
The study also showed that people who spent less time outside were more likely to feel depressed in their lifetime.
The key components of the study concluded that nature has a direct affect on our well-being and in particular having trees, shrubs and birds close by made a significant difference to the way people felt.
The study produced results that suggested bird song could help prevent mental fatigue and increase our levels of happy hormones, making us less likely to feel depressed.
This study and figures are even more concerning when we think about the mental health of our children in the UK. An RSPB study in 2013 suggested that just 1 in 5 children are connected to nature and wildlife. A three-year research project, undertaken by the RSPB, found that only 21 per cent of children in the UK have a level of connection to nature that can be considered ‘realistic and achievable’ for all children.
Recently BBC Newsnight did a piece of the amount of time UK children spend outdoors in nature and the findings were shocking - click here to watch >>>>>
With all this in mind and in particular due to the current restrictive circumstances, the time is now to take action to support both adult mental health and the health of children.
As well as this the decline in our natural environments in the UK has been attributed to the time children spend outside. If we are not showing children the wonders of nature or letting them connect with it how can we expect that they will see value in nature throughout their lifetime.
Getting outside and feeding the birds in your garden can be more than a small step towards increasing your own mental health and that of your children. Once you start feeding birds, more will come and you will start to see more and more in the garden.
This increase in numbers is both good for the birds — they are getting nutritional food and improving their lives — as well as being good for you — the more birds you see the less likely you are to feel stressed and depressed.
Click on the links below to see our range of bird feeds, treats and feeders.
Stay Home, stay safe, look after your mental health (and feed the birds!)