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Backyard Feeding

EnviroMinute/Birds in Government

Headlines

I hope everyone is enjoying spring now that it’s finally here! Just a quick reminder, watch where you step and have a good look around before doing any tree maintenance in case birds have made a nest somewhere that might not be so obvious. If you do find one that’s somewhere at risk, give your local bird rehabilitation center a call and they’ll send someone to move it. Also, I hope everyone is getting ready for the Global Big Day on Saturday, May 5th. You can log all your results at eBird.org.

EnviroMinute and Birds in Government are one segment this week. I want to remind everyone that using any sort of pesticide has a negative impact on the environment. If we kill all the insects, our birds will have nothing to eat – the food they eat in our feeders is more of a treat, they still need lots of insects around to keep their energy up. David also talks about decisions the US Government has recently made allowing the unregulated use of pesticides which will have a disastrous effect on the environment. Studies are showing that France has already lost 50% of it’s bird population and the insect population in Germany is down almost 80%. As David says, a world unfit for birds will soon be a world unfit for humans.

On Ask Dr. Bird, David talks about how corvids – ravens, crows, jays and magpies gather in groups when predators approach. If you hear a flock of jays making a lot of noise, chances are there is a raptor around. In the headlines, the captive bred Alalas or Hawaiian Crows are doing really well in the wild, and they are amazing researchers by expanding their vocabulary to describe new threats they didn’t have in captivity. And Britain has successfully rid the island of South Georgia of all rodents making it a peaceful sanctuary for Pipits, Pintail ducks and over 30 other species who were in decline because rodents were eating their eggs.

That’s it for this week – happy bird counting!