Garden Bird Invasion Imminent in Britain
News from the BTO
28th October 1996
Bird expert Andy Gosler, from Oxford University, is predicting a massive invasion of birds into Britain's gardens over the next few weeks and through the winter. After an exceptionally good year in 1995, Britain's beech trees have set few buts this year and so the ordinary garden birds, like Great Tits and Chaffinches will be at a bird feeder near you. His predictions appear in the latest BTO News (205), the newsletter of the British Trust of Ornithology.
Last winter saw masses of natural food and bird populations very high - although they did not have to come into gardens for seed and peanuts. The cold spring saw massive breeding failures and so populations this autumn are low. However food supplies of the favourite staple - the beech nut - are very poor and so the birds will be coming into gardens very soon.
For the moment weeds seeds and insects are keeping the birds going but when the first cold spells hit there is likely to be a rapid rise in the birds at the bird feeder. These birds will eat all sorts of food but peanut kernels in wire mesh tubes, black sunflower seed in hanging feeders and mixed seed spread on the ground will be taken in quantity. Feeders should be kept filled, once you have started feeding, and do not forget that the birds need water too.