Sunday, August 10, 2008

CRITTERS SUNDAY- THE DECLINE IN NUMBERS OF THE HOUSE SPARROW


SAVE THE HUMBLE HOUSE SPARROW

This is a house sparrow chewing a fly for his lunch. It was odd for me to snap a garden bird along the beach, but perhaps not so now with this particular bird anymore. The poor house sparrow used to be the commonest garden bird in the UK. Every garden had dozens of these friendly little birds, not so now. So why has the bird declined in numbers?

Modern living. I could elaborate and do a weeks worth of blogs in one post, but to put it in a nutshell that's it. What though do I mean by modern living?

Modern housing estates. It's all very well building nice shiny little boxes to live in, but please plant some hedgerows with them. These cute little birds thrive amongst the hedgerows. No hedgerows, no sparrows.

Off road car parking. Again a great idea, but birds don't live on a pile of concrete. Would it hurt to surround car parking areas with a little greenery for nesting birds.

Less gardens. Again birds don't live on gravel drives.

Too tidy gardens. Mow your lawn by all means, trim your hedges too, but don't obliterate the foliage. Keep it neat, but keep it.

Birds don't live in apartment blocks. Renovate existing building, not throw up new faceless ones. Birds love eaves. Where have all the eaves gone?

Save parks and and Nature Reserves! For all of us really. We really don't need another empty office block or supermarket buying land they will flatten and never use, just to stop a competitor buying it. Sparrows need green areas, hedgerows, trees and grass. In fact don't we need those too. Sure you dog that needs walking or your children kicking a ball would agree!

My garden has the house sparrow as a visitor. We too live in a modern house, but we have a garden, full of nuts, seeds and water. A tree to hide from sparrowhawks. Space under the guttering to nest.

Too find a humble house sparrow, scavenging for food along the beach, competing with the more adept shorebirds just wasn't right. We share this planet, we don't own it.

For more camera critters see MISTY DAWN Camera critters.

60 comments:

ratmammy said...

i love sparrows! did not know about their plight.. it would be sad if they disappeared... :(

Ladynred said...

What a lovely bird.

i beati said...

how unusal th epose lovely reALLY SANDY

Virginia said...

Well said my friend. This lovely photo is a poster child for walking gently on this good earth.

Professor said...

I didn't realize they were in such danger...

And great picture!

melanie said...

Tu as raison ! Les oiseaux ont besoin d'espace, de nourriture et de jardins. Les hommes aussi ! Il faut stopper notre mode de vie moderne. Déjà nous avons perdu les papillons. Les abeilles meurent aussi. Que nous restera-t-il demain ?

Ici j'ai encore la chance d'avoir un jardin un peu sauvage, un grand chêne et ... plein d'oiseaux : moineaux, mésanges, pinson, rouge-gorge ... Sauvons-les, sauvons-nous.

Tere {Blessings in Life} said...

That's an interesting shot! Happy CCS!

david mcmahon said...

Lovely shot. I didn't know that sparrows were in such dire straits.

Pat - An Arkansas Stamper said...

Lovely post, Miss B., with excellent information and ideas for the preservation of birds.

Boise Diva said...

I've followed posts on the plight of the house sparrow, and it's interesting that in my yard, I've seen a lot MORE house sparrows the past two years. And fewer dark-eyed juncos.

Indrani said...

You have a powerful message here. So rightly said: We share this planet we don't own it. Great shot of the sparrow too, excellent post my friend.

Carletta said...

Wonderful post about the plight of the sparrow.
Photo is great!

Louis la Vache said...

AMEN, Babooshka!

Tink *~*~* said...

Sparrows are plentiful in the American northeast. Now that I live in Florida, I don't see nearly as many birds as I did when I lived in New York. This is because my development is new construction, and the trees are babies yet. You need old growth to sustain a population of birds. I miss hearing them sing!

Tink *~*~*
My Mobile Adventures *~*~*

MEDITERRANEAN KIWI said...

very enlightening post once again!

Blue said...

Yes like you I think its a great shame the house sparrow has declined so.
At one time my garden was inundated with them, I could hardly keep them feed, now I'm lucky to see one - my gardens not changed maybe is wilder but I am surrounded by preditory cats...

Stanley said...

Sparrows are really cute creatures. I agree that they are reducing in number, in fact MANY animals are reducing in number due to global warning. Cheers!

Ming the Merciless said...

Poor sparrows! I guess we (humans) kill everything in our paths.

Ming the Merciless said...

Poor sparrows! I guess we (humans) kill everything in our paths.

Aileni said...

You've noted their decline too. Happily we do uou bit - they are regular feeders with us.

alice said...

I'm happy to have more time to read your post today, Babooshka, because I totally agree with you. I'm lucky enough to have a small garden and many birds but you're right, here too, in France, sparrows are less numerous than before...Their name is "moineau commun" but they are not so common anymore...
have a good Sunday in your garden!

GMG said...

Hi Babooshka! Great shot!
You missed 08.08.08 at Blogtrotter, but you’re still in time to get to a non-resident view of NYC... ;))
Have a great Sunday!

Denise said...

Yes, I too have noticed a decline, such a shame this is quite a querky cheeky little bird too.

bobbie said...

Sweet little bird. It is sad that we do not recognize the needs of these and other creatures, in our rush to make space for ourselves.

June said...

Never thought about the house sparrow being endangered as we see them and other sparrows a lot here. Very disturbing...and yes, we can and should do better!

Greyscale Territory said...

You are defitely right about the sparrows. I have noticed in Victoria, Australia that they have declined. The only place I see them in numbers is round outdoor cafe tables, seeking crumbs. Rarely do they appear in gardens.

The magpie has taken over as the common garden bird here.

B. Roan said...

We still seem to have plenty here. I would be happy to share if I could. There are several taking turns at the bird feeder right now. Hubby gets a little irritated with them because they dig through and take the good stuff and leave the rest on the ground. The doves don't seem to mind. They lurk around below the feeder and clean up the mess. Great shot!

JAMJARSUPERSTAR said...

Yes yes YES it's the same here - spuggies are really hard to come by now so I think I should put this down to global warming...

Heh, everything is being put down to global warming though now...
Ciao

Scarlet x

Your EG Tour Guide said...

North America is experiencing a decline in songbirds. It's a tragedy!

Lake Lady said...

I haven't noticed a decline here but I'll certainly pay more attention. Generally we're frustrated with the sparrows because they take over our Purple Martin houses! But we always leave them to do what they need to do. Can't imagine a day without seeing and hearing our little bird friends! Great shot and super commentary!

angela said...

Too true though on my most recent visit I was pleased to see how much more greenery is being incorporated into new building projects..

Teena in Toronto said...

I didn't realize there was a problem :(

I played too :)

D... said...

I had no idea about the plight of Sparrows'. Such a shame.

Thanks for visiting me!

Gretchen said...

It's a great shot, but a horrid message for us. We are truly destroying this world's greatest treasures. What animal will be gone next? :(

J. said...

Thanks for visiting my blog!
The sparrow is also nice. And I guess it must have been difficult to take the photo, as the birds are not the most patient objects to photograph ;)
In Poland where I live most of the time we have still quite a lot of sparrows and also other birds. But the influence of the EU is getting bigger and bigger so who knows how long this situation is going to last..

northcapedailyphoto

Snapper said...

Love this photo!

Bibi said...

A beautifully well-composed photo. Agree with you 100%. We are trashing the planet, and it makes me so sad when I really stop and think hard about it.

You'll be happy to know there are lots of sparrows here in Serbia, in fact the sparrow is the mascot of Belgrade. If you cut and past the following: http://yankee-in-belgrade.blogspot.com/search?q=sparrow

you'll see some sparrow photos I posted (one real, one on a tie, and one ceramic one!)

Faye Pekas said...

We have less sparrows than we used to have but I wonder, in this case, if they just moved on to a safer yard because of the neighbors cats.

Thanks for the info.

Harry Makertia said...

I'm proud to tell you that we have also house sparrows visiting us every morning.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

I had no idea that house sparrows were endangered!

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

are your house sparrows the same as ours?

LeenaM said...

Yes, they are less nowadays and zoologists do not now the reason. They have been thinking, that sparrows have got some disease.
It`s a clear reason, why yellowhammers are less - we have not horses any more and their dung.Yellowhammers ate seeds from the dung.
Nothing like that do not explain a decrease of sparrows, perhaps zoologists can find out some disease as they are thinking.
and we should remember also this and many other same kind of things:
also them have almost vanished from Finland`s summers - Ortolan Bunting, Emberiza hortulana

"It is a protected species in Europe and its sale is illegal in France, but Gascons still catch it by the end of summer to fatten it. This practice is politically sensitive and one of the reasons for the regional success of parties like that of Hunters and Fishers.

In September 2007, the French Government announced that it intended finally to enforce laws to protect the species that have been on the statute books for eight years" ( source Wikipedia : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ortolan_Bunting )

Mark W said...

Thank you for pointing this out. The sparrow will not survive unless we reivise our environmental outlook. Not just the sparrow but many warblers, buntings and the tit family.

Superbly composed photography throughout your blog, especially the birds.

Webradio said...

Hello !
What song is the bird singing ???

AppleDebbie said...

Thank you for beautiful photo and the informative post. I had no idea that the sparrow's numbers were declining.

Misty Dawn said...

Great photo and a fantastic post in all! Yes, we humans don't have nearly as much respect and regard for nature and its inhabitants as we should!

nonizamboni said...

Sparrows are near and dear to my heart and I'm noticing their decline here too. Your post was outstanding, well written and I applaud your standing up for these little winged creatures!
Great photo too.
Happy week!

laxeylass said...

My dad said he gets half the sparrows we used too 10 years ago.

Not forgotten you. I do check in, but
uni laptops are monitored.

You are a cult figure at the uni.
Upload "Martian Footprints." It's a seller.

Keep up the good work for the Island

CrazyCath said...

Excellent excellent post. Very well written. And I love the shot of the sparrow.

Ashrunner said...

Interesting that the House Sparrow is on the decline in the U.K. They seem to be doing quite well in central Oregon.

sue said...

Well done for highlighting this birds plight.

Lara said...

oh, that is too bad! I really like these birds. in here we still have plenty of them, and I hope it stays like this. nevertheless, thanks for the advice, we need also to plant some trees, but our garden is new. I hope it will be welcoming for the birds soon!

Christy said...

cute shot

crittoria said...

Well said!! Now, if only people would listen...

Anna said...

Poor little sparrows! I think the humans would benefit from some green areas too.

Dusty Lens said...

Please allow me to add to your list with the addition of the family cat. Wife and I in our north metro home have set up what we call the north metro bird station. Feeders and bird baths for all our feathered friends.

Regular visitors are the Baltimore Oriole, Chickadee, Goldfinch, Purplefinch, Cardinal, Bluejay, Hummingbird, and sparrows. We even have seen a few European House Sparrows.

Sadly, we discover many remains of birds and discovered te reason. The neighbor's cats hide in our flower garden and pounce on the bathing birds. Or, they hide behind our rosemary and basil pots and nab the ground feeding birds.

Some may say feeding birds is unnatural, but so is a sea of blacktop and concrete with manicured lush lawns and mini McMansions. Birds need our help.

Kelly said...

Beautiful photo of the sparrow and his plight! Good CC!

Becky said...

Very good post today. Nice photo and the commentary is fantastic. I enjoyed it a lot and agree with you. We need to enhance our natural growth and areas for animals and stop trying to take over the planet with our human neatness and buildings.

Thanks for this.

name said...

Wonderful!! We also have a garden and we have created it with birds in mind, planting trees and shrubs that are berry producing. When we moved here ten years ago it was an empty space of lawn; today it is overflowing with vegetation of all kinds. We do not clear away the end of summer's seed pods or stalks until the following spring and it is full of little sparrows at summer's end.

Yours is a great post with many fine points made which I'm sure some never thought of before.

the teach said...

babooska, I had no idea the house sparrow was in jeopardy... :(

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