Watch this video to learn more about birds in the cemeteries:

Learn more about our bird film stars

Meet the crochet birds made by artist Emily Doyle and compare them to illustrations by RSPB.


Redwings are members of the thrush family and migrate to the UK in the winter. They don’t usually visit gardens except in cold snowy weather, preferring to feed in open spaces like fields and along hedgerows. They eat berries and worms.

Length: 21cm
Wingspan: 34cm
Weight: 63g
Average lifespan: 2 years
When to see – September to April

redwing photo

Wood Pigeon

The largest and most common pigeon in the UK, it has a cooing call and makes a loud clatter with its wings when it flies away- you might be able to spot white patches on its wings when it flies. Wood pigeons live in the countryside and also in towns and cities, where they can be quite tame. They eat crops including cabbages, sprouts, peas and grain. They also eat buds, shoots, seeds, nuts and berries.

Length: 42cm
Wingspan: 78cm
Weight: 450g
Average lifespan: 3 years
When to see: All year round


Long Tailed Tit

Long tailed tits are easy to recognise because they have small and round with tails longer than their bodies. They are usually found in small excitable flocks of about 20 birds. Like other tits, they like to live in trees and bushes in woods and hedgerows. They usually eat insects, but sometimes eat seeds in Autumn and Winter.

Length: 14cm
Wingspan: 18cm
Weight: 9g
Average lifespan: 2 years
When to see: All year round

long tailed tit photo


Linnets are members of the finch family. Males have crimson foreheads and breasts, but females are more brown. They have a melodious song and often twitter as they fly. They may be seen in large flocks during the winter and eat seeds and insects. Since the 1970s their population in the UK has declined by 57%.

Length: 14cm
Wingspan: 24cm
Weight: 19g
Average lifespan: 2 years
When to see: All year round

common linnet photo

Blue Tit

Blue tits are very colourful and easy to recognise with their blue, yellow, white and green feathers. They eat insects, caterpillars, nuts and seeds and in winter family flocks join up with other tits to search for food. Blue tits are frequent visitors to gardens and can often be seen on bird feeders.

Length: 12cm
Wingspan: 18cm
Weight: 11g
Average lifespan: 3 years
When to see: All year round


Black Redstart

Named after the grey/black plumage and red tails of male birds (juveniles and females are paler in colour) these small birds are adapted to live at the heart of industrial and urban centres but are now becoming extremely rare with only 100 breeding pairs in the UK. They eat insects, spiders, worms, berries and seeds.

Length: 14cm
Wingspan: 22cm
Weight: 15g
Average lifespan: 2 years

black redstart photo

Suggested activities

In the classroom

Make a top trumps game with all your favourite birds and play with your friends.
We have given you the stats for our film star birds here but you can look them up for other birds which you might have seen in the cemeteries e.g. robin, magpie, crow, blackbird, chiff chaff, wren, sparrow. You can find their stats online e.g. The Wildlife Trust website or in a book. Download Top Trumps template PDF.

Make pinecone bird feeders to hang in the playground, your garden or a local green space like the cemeteries.

In the cemeteries

Go birdwatching, make a note of any birds you spot (you can describe them, take a photo or draw a picture if you don’t know the species name), where you see them and what they are doing. Download the go bird watching sheet.

You can compare your records with others in your group to see how many different birds you spotted. Now is a good time to look up any birds you didn’t know online or in a book.

Be quiet and listen, can you hear any birds singing? Spring is the best time to hear lots of different birds. You can practice listening to common birdsongs here to learn the difference between them:

You can be citizen scientists and upload your records to the iNaturalist app, or EcoRecord website to help build a picture of the wildlife living in your area.

Jewellery Quarter Cemeteries Project


We are very excited about 'Diamonds in the Rough' a unique tour with storytelling & live performance, exploring queer history in the JQ Cemeteries for LGBT History Month.
Join Sheldon K Goodman and
Sacha Coward from @thecemeteryclub
on 12th-14th February:

#lgbthistory #valentinesday #birmingham #jewelleryquarter #jewelleryquarterbirmingham #cemetery #tour #birminghamheritage

Released to celebrate the Winter Solstice 2021, this video explores some of the nocturnal animals which make the Jewellery Quarter Cemeteries their home. They might be hard to spot, but we can often see the traces they leave behind.

Emily Doyle @oldbort is a multidisciplinary visual artist who moved to the Jewellery Quarter as a student in 2015 and never left. Her practice focuses on the biological, looking for comfort in the physicality that connects us all during changing times. Throughout lockdown, Warstone Lane and Key Hill Cemeteries have been a source of inspiration and respite for Emily and the sites have shaped her creative output through 2020 and 2021, Like many, she has found the JQ Cemeteries to be a place of grounding and reflection.

Sustainability is at the forefront of Emily's work. The textile sculptures in this film were all made using reclaimed textiles, including some sourced through Scrapstore Birmingham.

This film commission was funded by National Lottery Heritage Fund, Birmingham City Council and Jewellery Quarter Development Trust

#cemetery #cemeterywildlife #fox #crochet #jewelleryquarterbirmingham

The star of the final @oldbort cemeyery seasons film of the year, which drops on 21st December has taken up residence right next to the @jqbid Christmas window at the Big Peg!
You can see this fox in his den anytime during the window trail. We can't wait for his on camera debut!
#crochet #creative #jewelleryquarter #birmingham #christmaswindow #jqchristmas #cemeterywildlife

This project is possible because of funding from: