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Thursday December 01, 2022

Study shows watching, hearing birds improves well-being for 8 hours

Research team hopes that their findings can help people understand the significance of healthy environments

By Web Desk
October 30, 2022
Robin bird singing during Spring.— Unsplash
Robin bird singing during Spring.— Unsplash

Researchers at  King’s College London have found that listening to birds chirping and watching them can uplift the mood and make people feel better for up to eight hours.

Experts used an app called Urban Mind in their study. Participants were asked thrice a day if they saw or heard birds. After that, the respondents were supposed to report their mental well-being via a questionnaire.

“There is growing evidence on the mental health benefits of being around nature," said lead author Ryan Hammoud, a research assistant at the college’s Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, & Neuroscience.

Hammoud added that little research had been done on the positive effects of birds on mental health.

He said that their study had proven for the first time that there was a link between listening to birds and a positive mood. The team hopes that their research can help people understand the significance of environments and biodiversity for human mental health.

Over 1,200 people participated in the study published in Scientific Reports. The study completed more than 26,800 assessments through the mobile app. The respondents were mainly from the US, the UK, and some parts of Europe.

The team further discovered the positive effects of birdlife on the mental health of depressed people. They found that seeing or hearing birds improved the well-being of those too who were suffering from depression. 

"It can be difficult to prove the benefits of ecosystem scientifically,” noted senior author Andrea Mechelli.