Songbirds have found a welcome in my garden.
THE RSPB is concerned at the alarming demise of the songbird population, with the destruction of the hedgerows, the clearance of suburban nesting sites, and the cat population accounting for many millions every year, the once familiar flutter and tuneful chirping they think will soon be a thing of the past. I have to report that in this corner of empire they could not be more wrong.
Our semi-rural garden is alive with the sound of birdsong, due in part to our proximity to the treelined canal that meanders past the house, and the many feeders and watering bowls in the garden. Back in early spring I watched with great alarm at the pathetic few birds that used the feeders, maybe twice a day, and only for a few minutes, a couple would spend time feeding and fly off. It has only been in the last week or so that the transformation has been monumentally different.
With the good weather appearing our garden is alive with the fluttering of wings and birdsong, from wood pigeons, collared doves, dozens of sparrows and, amazingly, two pairs of goldfinches which are nesting in a tree directly opposite our kitchen window. Add in the blackbirds, tits, robins and finches of many varieties and it is a joy to watch. It has unfortunately attracted a sparrow hawk who sees them all as potential food.
Where once I would fill the feeders twice a week now it is every day, and at any time the fluttering and chirping is a welcome backdrop to the road noise that constantly filters through.
Now that the breeding season is in full swing the fledgling sparrows fearlessly perch on the garden furniture just inches from our patio windows, they flutter off to join their siblings and wait patiently while mum feeds them in turn, all seen just feet from our windows.
I can only assume that as there is a constant source of food and water, that the word got out on the avian grapevine, free food and plenty of it, and the overspill that is not snapped up is eaten by the squirrels that are nesting in their drays along the canal.
I can happily report to the RSPB that the songbirds up here in God's country are alive and well, and eating me out of house and home. And it is nice to know that, like Ronnie Wood and Rupert Murdoch, this old crusty can still pull the birds.
Tony Levy, Wednesfield.
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Twitter: @birminghammail Facebook: facebook.com/birminghammail Post: Birmingham Mail, Floor 6, Fort Dunlop, Fort Parkway, B24 9FF I watched with great alarm at the pathetic few birds that used the feeders, maybe twice a day, and only for a few minutes Tony Levy