It's baby bird season again

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lilynmitz
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It's baby bird season again

Post by lilynmitz » Tue Apr 01, 2014 8:36 am

Hi all, can I just remind everyone that it's baby bird season again. The parents are busy finding mates, gathering nest material, finding food and, eventually, feeding fledglings, both in and out of the nest. So they're completely distracted and very vulnerable, and the loss of one parent means the loss of all the fledglings, as one parent can't feed them enough. Even worse, the loss of both parents means they will all starve to death.

So can we please be vigilant with our cats. If you can, please try to keep them in from dusk until as late as you can in the morning, as this is when the birds are most active feeding, and cats have better eyesight in poor light, so the birds are at a further disadvantage. This alone will make a huge difference to their survival rate.

If your cat is an avid hunter, please fit them with a safety collar and loud bell. The RSPB say this reduces the kill rate by at least a third, and as I said, one parent dead means the loss of the entire brood, so each bird saved has a knock-on effect.

If you're feeding the birds to help them along, please put the feeders away from shrubs, and cut back the undergrowth, so the cat can't hide before pouncing. This will give ground feeders such as sparrows, chaffinches, dunnocks and blackbirds a better chance to see the cat early and get away.

These rules are valuable all year round, but especially between April and June.

Thanks everyone.

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meriad
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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by meriad » Tue Apr 01, 2014 11:05 am

An excellent post - thank you !

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lilynmitz
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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by lilynmitz » Wed Apr 09, 2014 5:56 pm

Just bumping this up for those who haven't read it yet. It's still important!

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Crewella
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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by Crewella » Wed Apr 09, 2014 6:30 pm

Duly noted, thanks! :)

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MarkB
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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by MarkB » Tue Apr 15, 2014 8:38 am

:)
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KittyWitty
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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by KittyWitty » Tue Apr 15, 2014 8:41 am

haha love the photo!

Good thing my boy doesn't get out, think he'd go crazy with all those birdies out there!

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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by HRHFluffy » Tue Apr 15, 2014 5:40 pm

Great photo Mark :D

We don't have any grey squirrels where we live now but I have to say I do sort of miss the regular battles I had with them over the feeders. They outsmarted me every time :)

Fluffy's hunting days are well and truly over. She goes as far as sitting on the doorstep chattering at them but that's it. It's become part of her morning routine.

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Re: It's baby bird season again

Post by MarkB » Tue Apr 15, 2014 6:41 pm

It is the visiting torties I worry about. They hang about most of the day and are very interested in the birds. I put out leftover cat food (and even buy extra tins!) for the seagulls mainly, but the blackbirds etc are also feeding from it. Last year when I rescued an injured Magpie (that I assume was injured by of of the visitors) I spoke to Fran, the vet nurse next door who also runs a wildlife rescue. I told her I felt guilty as I was giving cats the opportunity to kill birds. I asked if I should stop feeding. She said the seagulls especially are reliant on me now and although there may be the odd casualty, overall it was better for the birds if I keep feeding. Anyway, she x-rayed the magpie - no broken bones but a nasty flesh would, After several days of Metcam and antibiotics, it was well enough to be released after a few weeks :)

PS - I have never seen a squirrel here. They were everywhere in London.

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