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 21 June 2018

RSPB urges Oxford residents to help boost ailing swift population

16th June

Pete Hughes

BIRD lovers are being encouraged to take steps to try and boost Oxford’s ailing swift population.
The bird – known as a ‘master of the sky’ – has seen numbers decline by more than half between 1995 and 2015.

For swift awareness week, which starts today, the RSPB is urging residents to help boost the food and nesting options available for the bird in a bid to make the city more habitable.

Emily Seccombe, Oxford Swift City project officer, said people can help by putting up a nestbox or growing wildflowers to attract flying insects - a swift’s main source of food.

She added: “Swifts are urban nesting birds; they make their nests in the cracks and crevices under tiles or in stonework.

“A major cause of swifts’ decline is the loss of nest spaces in buildings, due to demolition or renovation of old buildings.

“Modern buildings often lack the spaces that swifts need.”

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