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The birds' beauty belies their often menacing and destructive nature 

Jays hit by acorn shortage

A poor acorn crop this year could be pushing jays into gardens in search of food, experts said today.

<p>1. Bird feeder</p>
<p>£40, johnlewis.com</p>
<p>A hipster home demands a hipster bird feeder – and they certainly don't come much cooler than this number by Eva Solo.</p>

The 10 Best garden wildlife kits

From hedgehog houses to full feeding station kits, give your garden wildlife the treat they deserve

It’s time to shoot down the game hunting myths

As National Anti-Shooting week draws to a close, guns are in the news, but it's not only humans that fall victim to violence

Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla, illegally trapped on limestick for use as Ambelopulia, Cyprus

Political row flares over 'brutal slaughter' of three million birds a year in Cyprus

Migrating birds caught in the deadly middle of political spat over responsibility for 'cruel practice' of illegally trapping birds to use in local delicacy

Fittest or biggest? New Zealand fur seals, above, have been picking off Kangaroo Island's fairy penguins

Trouble at Kangaroo Island

A resurgent seal population is ganging up on the world's smallest penguin

Zoology: P-p-p pick up a penguin to see if it's p-p-p put on weight

I would love to weigh a penguin. I wouldn't mind assessing a stoat, either, or taking the inside leg measurements of a baby giraffe. A tarantula spider, however – well, not so much. At London Zoo this week, however, it isn't just the warm-eyed, cuddly creatures that will be given a once-over as part of the annual "weigh-in".

Southern Indians left penniless after emu investment scheme bosses disappear leaving thousands of birds to starve

When someone came up with the idea of breeding emus in southern India it sounded like a sure-fire way to prosperity. The meat could be sold to restaurants, the hide turned into leather.

Album: Nora Gubisch, Alain Altinoglu, Ravel: Mélodies
(Naïve)

Ravel effected an understated formal revolution in vocal music, the pieces performed here by mezzo-soprano Nora Gubisch with pianist Alain Altinoglu being notable for their commitment to textual interpretation rather than sheer operatic grandeur.

Sarah Kendall: Get Up, Stand-Up, Pleasance Courtyard, Edinburgh

“So what happened in the first 15 minutes, did you just not like me?” asks Sarah Kendall of her audience at the end of her show. Observational comedians are supposed to say what everyone else is thinking but on this matter, Kendall is too close to the bone: her audience tonight just don’t buy into her.

Michael McCarthy: If your wish is for the wild, St Kilda will fulfil it

FreeView from the editors at i

Arifa Akbar: It's a funny, moving read - but Hornby's just not up there with Joyce

The question being asked is what makes a modern classic, but perhaps we should be asking who decides what makes one. In this case, it's the bods at Penguin publishing who have deemed Nick Hornby's man-bible on football obsession to be up there with the best of them.

Friday 3, August: Becky Gallantree competes in the Women's 3m Springboard Diving Preliminary Round

Diving: Team GB duo Becky Gallantree and Hannah Starling scrape into semi-final of women's three-metre springboard

Becky Gallantree and Hannah Starling scraped through to the semi-final of the women's three-metre springboard at the Aquatics Centre this afternoon.

Hubbard's Cupboard: At least this time they are not shooting live pigeons...

The man with incredible tales...

Sixteen gulls found dead in Eastbourne resort

Sixteen gulls have been found dead in a seaside resort within the past week, prompting the RSPCA to call for greater tolerance of the birds.

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Prices correct as of 12 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas