Hammond and team studied the mental health benefits of encountering (seeing or hearing birds). They relate that they “used the Urban Mind smartphone application to examine the impact of seeing or hearing birds on self-reported mental wellbeing in real-life contexts. A sample of 1292 participants completed a total of 26,856 ecological momentary assessments between April 2018 and October 2021. Everyday encounters with birdlife were associated with time-lasting improvements in mental wellbeing. These improvements were evident not only in healthy people but also in those with a diagnosis of depression, the most common mental illness across the world. . . . Specific measures, aimed at preserving and increasing everyday encounters with birdlife in urban areas, should be implemented.” Research Design Connections regularly shares info on studies reporting the positive effects of hearing birdsongs (even indoors via nature soundscapes) on wellbeing and cognitive performance.
Ryan Hammond, Stefania Tognin, Lucie Burgess, Nicol Bergou, Michael Smythe, Johanna Gibbons Neil Davidson, Alia Afifi, Ioannis Bakolis, and Andrea Mechelli. 2022. “Smartphone-Based Ecological Momentary Assessment Reveals Mental Health Benefits of Birdlife.” Scientific Reports, vol. 12, no. 17589, https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-20207-6