26/8/2021

We must make sure the tables don't turn for our garden birds: Our letter to The Guardian

Written by James Swyer, Press & Publications Manager

1 Minute Read

Blue tit on bird table

It is alarming to see the imbalance caused by garden bird feeders laid out for clearly (Feeding birds in our gardens is a joy – but it may be harming weaker species, 25 August). Whilst well-intentioned, reports that it is boosting numbers of our more common garden birds and, in turn, threatening their subordinate counterparts, such as the willow tit and pied flycatcher should be a real cause for concern. Improving habitat, be it on farmland or in gardens, is essential for a balanced and thriving birdlife, particularly those insectivores unlikely to benefit from the banquet laid out on a bird table. With garden bird food becoming a lucrative business, including for big conservation charities, surely it’s time these proceeds went to understanding its impact and giving the public better guidance before we lose some of our much-loved species?

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Comments

Garden bird feeding

at 13:00 on 01/09/2021 by Brian

Reading the report, it sounds more like the problem is a lack of suitable nesting sites. Providing suitable nest sites would help alleviate this problem. In fact the problem is not the bird table feeding but our usual housing problem.

garen bird feeding

at 12:24 on 31/08/2021 by Alison Hiles

Another example of every action has an equal and opposite reaction! Human interference, however well-meaning, needs to be looked at very carefully because change needs the chance for mutation to adapt to it, which takes many generations to achieve. Some things, like bacteria and viruses have short generation times but most are at least a year and many are much longer than that. The ones which don't achieve the necessary changes die out - Darwin taught us that well over a century ago (survival of the fittest) but we don't seem to have learnt from it.

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