Monthly data from the BTO enables Gardman to monitor trends in garden bird numbers and activity, pinpointing, for example, where certain species are in decline. Gardman can then make suggestions on how stockists can use this information to boost sales.
Gardman says the plight of house sparrows is am example. BTO Garden BirdWatch data highlights their decline over the past 20 years and the BTO suggests possible reasons why this has happened. Supplementary feeding at certain times of the year can help improve their survival rate. Armed with such data, retailers can create in-store messaging to influence customer purchases, says Gardman.
The BTO tests all Gardman products, while feedback from bird feeding enthusiasts helps test products and generate ideas for further new product development.
BTO associate director communications (science) Mike Toms said: "The BTO's relationship with Gardman, which first began in 1996, has been hugely beneficial to both partners. Royalties received from Gardman have helped the BTO to fund research into garden birds, their ecology and populations, while Gardman has benefited from BTO expertise, as it has sought to develop and market its range of bird feeds and feeding products."