Birds and how to help

The Birdie Song!

garden-birdMany years ago the gardens and fields would be full of song from a huge variety of birds that could be seen flitting around looking for food and nesting places.

Changes in our landscape, global warming, trees being felled, pesticides and illegal hunting have driven some of our most treasured species close to extinction.

The common house sparrow is not common any more.  Mobs of squabbling, chirping sparrows that once filled gardens with their delightful antics are on the Red list, which means they are an endangered species.

Starlings with their beautiful shiny plumage have declined by a frightening 84% in recent years.  Just 10 years ago I counted over 50 starlings feeding in my garden, their young bobbing around pestering their parents for food.  Now we have just 1 pair.

How can you help?

  • Put out a feeder or two.  Remember to keep them clean and don’t put out whole nuts between April and July as the young birds can choke on them.  Avoid netting on fat balls as birds and other animals get trapped in the nylon, which can be very dangerous.
  • Nest boxes are a great idea.  Different sizes and shapes will attract different birds so you can help boost threatened species by putting out boxes to suit them.
  • Nectar rich flowers will attract insects and this will attract the birds!  Flowers such as teasels look lovely in the summer and left over winter will provide seeds for birds such as goldfinches and everyone loves to see blackbirds feeding on sunflower seeds.