As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Urgent action needed to save wild bird habitats

It seemed that this spring the skies were unusually quiet of birdsong.

April, May and June is usually a noisy – and lovely – nesting time. But where were all the colourful migratory birds that herald the arrival of spring, the nest building activity, and the thrill of their ancient songs? Where were the barn swallows, grosbeaks, flickers, wild pigeons, and hummingbirds? Song birds usually fill the trees in spring and there are usually hummingbird line-ups at the feeders from the end of March onwards as dozens of them hover, pushing for their turn. But this spring, we only saw two. Raptors – eagles, hawks, owls, and turkey vultures – seemed to be relatively plentiful but something was amiss.

I thought of Rachel Carson’s prophetic classic book ‘Silent Spring’ which, this year, celebrates its 50th anniversary since its release. Has the wisdom of her words that warned of birds’ demise because of pesticides and habitat loss come back to roost?


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