Letter: Save songbirds
Wednesday 16 December 1998
Sir: When the disappearance of songbirds is discussed, why is the balance between them and their natural predators so seldom considered? Factors such as loss of habitat that cause the birds to decrease act only indirectly on their predators.
Our leafy suburb is a relative haven for wildlife. When I moved here 29 years ago, our garden regularly harboured scores of sparrows, two pairs of robins, numerous wrens and always at least two blackbirds and a pair of songthrushes. It was visited by many other species of small birds such as flycatchers, finches and tits. The only small birds that I see regularly now are blue tits. We have a nesting box which they use every year.
In this area we now have foxes, numerous crows, jays, magpies and a pair of kestrels. I sometimes hear screams at night and in the morning find a heap of feathers on the grass where a fox has been. Of the song thrushes that have tried to live here in recent years, the last ones, two years ago, nested in ivy on a tree and had their nest pulled out by a crow.
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Planes go hybrid-electric in important step to greener flight
- 2 Antonio Martin shooting: Mayor says there should be 'no comparison' to Ferguson
- 3 Antonio Martin shooting: Police and protesters clash over teenager's death just five miles from Ferguson, Missouri
- 4 British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
- 5 Northern Lights in the UK: Stunning Aurora Borealis illuminates Northumberland sky on Christmas Eve
Cruel Woman in Black prank sees cinema-goers terrified by movie poster - watch their reactions
Best underrated Christmas movies: From Trading Places to While You Were Sleeping
Game of Thrones season five: First preview clip shows a beardy Tyrion, a moody Cersei and a distressed Arya
Christmas TV guide 2014: The best shows to watch from Doctor Who to Downton Abbey
Merry Xmas Everybody: Slade tops 'most-streamed' Spotify Christmas tunes of 2014
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever