I have joined RSPB tonight just to find out if anyone else has noticed the disappearance of the small birds especially where I live in E Yorks. I have lived here for seven years, and round where I live we had at least seven colonies of blackbirds which have completely disappeared along with all other small birds. I have notice over the last month that birds the size of wood pigeons and magpies are ok but I have not seen a small bird now for weeks. There was mention of this on telly last night, which prompted me to write the contact dept. of RSPB, which resulted in an automatic reply.
I have been to my allotment today, which is approx 10 miles from my home and its the same there, no small birds, I have a very bad feeling about this. Anybody out there experiencing the same? Lesley
Hi Lesley - if you read through the various threads, you will see that there are still many small birds around (some people on the forums attract very large numbers into their gardens and make the rest of us very jealous). The last couple of weeks have been very quiet in the gardens for many people as birds have disappeared off to moult and feed in the woods and hedgerows where there are ample berries and insects.
As I discovered today walking in my local park, there are birds around if you look carefully enough. Also, there was a great deal of bird song if you stood and listened. I am new to birdwatching but have discovered late in life that birds I had only ever seen in books are out there waiting to be seen and enjoyed. Nationally, of course, some of the small birds have continued to decrease for a whole range of reasons and everyone remains very concerned about this trend.
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Hi GeoDave, thanks for the reply, I am absoluetly stumped, no dawn chorus.
We have always had birds everyday as H im indoors is housebound and has no birds to watch. Usually there is always something, and we must be very lucky as we usually have a large variety of different birds. we live in a sheltered housing complex, in which everyone has a bird table. Its very eerie and I have never known this before. Its not just me other people in the village are noticing as well.
I was reading today that there are generally less birds in the garden at this time of year as they move out into the wider landscape whilst natures larder is still full and food is easier to find. Once it gets colder they will then move back into the gardens and onto the feeders again.
Also many birds moult some or all of their feathers at this time of year which they tend to do in the safety of thick undergrowth apparently. During this time again they are less obvious to spot but when they do come back they should be in tip top condition and looking great....sounds like opportunity for some good photos to me!
The article that I was reading about this was in September's 'Bird Watching' magazine which I have to say is a very interesting read for anyone who hasn't tried it before.
Hope this helps
well since june most birds left and havent come back a few tits robins and sprrows and one or two wood pigeons and a pair of collar doves
robins never left but i havent seen a black bird either the ring collared parrkeets fly over and the sea gulls since june
also a flock of starlings about 20ty are around think they have come from europe as there wernt any till a week ago
i keep thinking that they have gone to some garden that must feed them as bird food can be obtain nearly every ware this year
the magpies group has stayed a nest in my garden my be the reason for them staying?
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Hi- my garden went quiet as usual in august and september. This year there is a LOT of natural food about atm and the birds are moving about taking advantage of it. My local blackbirds are all out in the fields and hedges atm. On the plus side lots of Chaffinches arrived in the village 3 weeks ago and this week Long tailed Tits and Goldcrests have appeared.
Fieldfares are dropping in but then moving through.
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Great responses everyone, and a very good question to start with! We get asked this every autumn here in wildlife enquiries, some years more than others and this year we have had a considerable number of 'where are all the bird' queries. I wrote a brief explanantion on the Wildlife enquiries blog back in August when we had just started getting these queries in and much of what was said is still true. However as it has been a very mild autumn, many of the birds that are usually venturing back into gardens by now are still able to get the food and shelter they need from the wider countryside.
This isn't anything sinister, the birds will be benefitting from the abundance of natural food and will return when conditions change. I think for most areas of the UK the leaf cover is diminishing now and colder weather is forecast; expect more garden bird activity when this change occurs.
As for the dawn chorus, you shouldn't really expect much of a dawn chorus through the autumn and winter, only a few of our winter residents sing at this time (the robin, blackbird and great tit are among the most vocal at this time of year). The dawn chorus is a feature of the breeding season whilst birds are advertising their prowess to potential mates and declaring ownership of their territories, March, April, May and June are the months where the dawn chorus is at it's glorious best!
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We have been quieter than normal because there is so much natural food around but soon they will return and eat us out of house and home again ha ha.We find our busiest time is throughout the breeding season when we can't keep up with them, so, it is quite nice to have a little break.
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Garden birds around my area (Ross-shire Scotland) haven't changed. There seems to be more sparrows than usual. Its the waders that have dropped. Usually this time of year we have a large amount of redshank and wigeon. Although some have arrived it's not the usual numbers :(
Thanks everyone for all your replies.
Its early November now and still haven't got our birds back not a robin blue tit even a sparrow to be seen, however I came across a collared dove the other day with its breast ripped out. We do have a sparrowhawk, (I think its a goshawk as its a lot bigger) It visits now and again leaving its bodies about. Usually at this time of year we have at least something knocking about, the blackbirds haven't returned, thinking about it we do have quite a few cats in the area, but they've always been here. Still flummoxed!!!
I shouldn't worry too much as it is still so mild! Here in Somerset we are still waiting for their return to the gardens although this week I have had a few tits in (blue, great and Coal) These visits were however very random and short.
Driving home from work this afternoon I was amazed at the amount of berries everywhere still, the bushes are absolutely laden here!!...
Its interesting to know that you have a lot of berries down your way. The berries here are stripped bare so I'm half expecting another hard winter and remortgaging the house to pay for the bird food lol