What is the Dawn Chorus?

Every morning, but especially in the spring, birds across the world welcome the sun to a new day with their song. This is known as the dawn chorus.

With the numbers of songbirds declining in the UK, our dawn chorus is getting harder and harder to hear.

To celebrate this natural wonder, International Dawn Chorus Day #IDCD is held worldwide on the first Sunday in May. Supporters get an early start, watch the sunrise and listen to the bird songs. You can either enjoy the birds in the comfort of your own garden or venture out to an event in your area.

International Dawn Chorus Day 2020


#IDCD may be a bit different this year. Some of us would normally head out to a local event. But we can all still appreciate the joy the dawn chorus brings from the comfort of our own homes.

Spending time in our gardens or even sitting next to an open window will help us get through these testing times.

We all look forward to seeing those first signs of spring, but what about listening to them? After all, natures very own orchestra is a beautiful thing!

The dawn chorus begins in March and reaches its peak in May, which also coincides with International Dawn Chorus Day on the 3rd of May.

Since we can't go and join in with an organised event this year, let us enjoy the wonderful sounds of dawn at home with #MyGardenIDCD

Why not take your breakfast and head outside? The first birds start singing about an hour before sunrise, so it will be an early start. It may be a little chilly but that lovely spring symphony is bound to leave you feeling warm inside!

If heading out at that time of the morning is not for you, then maybe try sleeping with the window open and letting those feathered alarm clocks wake you and enjoy listening from under the covers?

We would love to hear how you are keeping nature in your life, please share photos and accounts of what’s happening in your garden, especially which birds you are hearing in

your own personal dawn chorus!

Follow the fun in 2020 #MyGardenIDCD

Not sure what birds you can hear?

Head over to our Songbird Spotlight to learn more about the birds you are most likely to hear in your garden.

Play recordings of their songs, learn what they look like, what they like to eat and where you are most likely to spot them.

We have also found fascinating facts which may come in useful for that next quiz. Let SBS help you amaze your friends with your knowledge!


Head over to SoundTent's annual Reveil dawn broadcast from around the globe!

Starting at 5m on Saturday 2nd May 2020 and following the wonderful sounds of dawn, streamed live until 6am on Sunday 3rd of May 2020

Dawn is an amazing time of day with a myriad of wonderful sounds from different countries.

Listen in at any time during the day; or leave on in the background for an amazing soundscape to make your whole day special.

Join us Live!

George from the SBS team will be live to (try) and answer your questions!

Pop on to the website early on Sunday 3rd May and George will have a chat box ready for you to fire your queries at.

She was the only one of the team who volunteered to get up so early for you and doesn't profess to knowing everything; so please be kind.

Not being an ornithologist, she knows some bird songs, but not all.  Being an avid gardener and nature lover she is pretty good at helping with ideas to do in your garden to help birds and other wildlife. 


What she doesn't know, she will do her best to look up for you. 

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SongBird Survival. A Company limited by guarantee and not having a share capital. Registered in England no 4078747. Charity No: 1085281