Please keep cats away from baby birds this spring

WILD birds are having a tough time. The long spell of very cold weather has badly affected them at a time when they are beginning to nest, and there are very few insects.

Birds have natural predators, and the increase in birds of prey has worried many people. But young birds can fall victims to a number of other species including crows, magpies, herons, squirrels and even woodpeckers. Our garden birds have another, far more dangerous predator to worry about; the cat. Cats kills young birds from instinct, but rarely eat their victims as they are very well fed already.

May I appeal to your readers who have cats to do all they can to prevent them attacking baby birds during the coming breeding season. Keeping cats indoors, or at least putting an audible bell on the collar can help a lot.

In our garden we have regular visits by five or six cats. Last year they killed many fledglings. Blackbirds, thrushes and starlings are very vulnerable, but we lost sparrows, robins, dunnocks, doves and chaffinches as well. It was heartbreaking. When you next let your cat out remember you are releasing a killer. Wild birds in our gardens are a joy, but they need our help. We can all do so much more. Thank you.

Mr J PULHAM


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