The Grand Tour: Fife and Beyond

Ramblings of an inveterate cyclist

I made a nest box for Tits and was surprised that there was a demand for such nest boxes, (I now have an assembly line set up in the workshop. Toys are out, bird boxes are in this Christmas).

Now what I know about birds and their nesting habits can be written on the back of the proverbial postage stamp in 12 point uppercase print. The internet to the rescue.

Is it not always the case when you go for a quick reference on the internet you become more and more interested in the subject and end up spending hours trolling through pages of the stuff, there are acres of information on the net, on all sorts of birds, we would normally find in our gardens. I had made a box of tits, and robins so what about sparrows.

The house sparrows it would seem is a very sociable bird often forming in flocks with other species of birds as well as other sparrows and during the breeding prefer to nest in groups. Sparrow will engage in other social behaviour too, such as communal bathing and social singing, (sparrow choirs, nope, never heard of that).

The house sparrow feeds mostly on the ground, at feeding stations and nests, females house sparrows are dominant despite their smaller size, and they can fight over males in the breeding season. (I have sisters, so I can associate with that).

Equipped with all of this information and to my surprise found out that Sparrow numbers are in serious decline, (Hamilton, superhero to the rescue), so I decided to build a ‘Sparrow Motel. As ever it started off as a modest three-room box and ended up as a 16 room motel with covered feeding area.

Since all of this is occupational therapy, I wanted to build something a bit special, I wanted to use all those fancy woodworking joints, and rebates for the dividers. And rather than pass this one on, keep it and put it in our garden, the idea being to start a sparrow colony at City Park. There is a large area of shrubs that is pretty well undisturbed by the gardeners, they do trim them once a year but that is only towards the back end of the year so after the breeding season.

This, of course, will require planning permission from Viewpoint, who in turn will require my application in writing and at least three committee meeting to discuss my proposal and come to a conclusion, ho-hum.

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