Sunday, 26 December 2010

Where Have They Gone?

Redwings and Pyracantha: who ate all the berries?

There’s a lot of argument now about whether, as well as how, what and when to feed wild birds, with the crucial word there being wild, ie not domesticated.

Now that most farmland has been turned over to little more than ‘green deserts’ of monoculture many farmland bird populations have died down to a tiny fraction of what they used to be, although some farmers are now growing some areas of seed crops to revive winter seed-feeders like tree sparrow, reed bunting, corn bunting, yellowhammer, linnet, house sparrow, bullfinch and skylark (PDF).

For anyone with a bit of garden or land, avoiding insecticides so as to allow insects and birds to flourish in the spring and summer, and growing a good diversity of plants to provide fruit and seeds naturally in the winter seems to me the best option for genuine long term benefit to wildlife.

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