Inevitably over time and with the reduction in habitat, subtle changes in climate and other factors some species have declined, although some have thrived over recent years. Last year it was the common sparrow and the starling that are particular cause for concern. Both of these used to be numerous to the point they seemed to swamp the other birds. And yet they have declined over 80% and 60% respectively over the last 10 years.
Anyway we love our birds, and Mary is a diligent bird feeder ensuring there is food for the birds even on occasions when we are away (thank you friends and neighbours). This year we have counted Robin, House Sparrow, Tree Sparrow, Blackbird, Blackcap, Wren, Collared Dove, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, and Wood Pigeon in our count. Not around today when we counted, we know we get swifts (in summer), Crows, Rooks and Jackdaws, and there are Kites, Buzzards, Sparrowhawks and even Ravens who nest in the gorge and swoop over, and then seagulls (not quite "garden birds") creeping in from the coast. We also get the occasional Heron passing by (they like to check out the ponds in the gorge valley below us). Sadly we no longer seem to have an Thrushes. Just a few miles away Mary's mum (another passionate bird lover) has most of the above and also beautiful Goldfinch, Bullfinch, Long-tailed Tit and even the occasional Woodpecker. So all-in all not bad - and if anyone staying has an interest they are more than welcome to take time in the garden to see what they see.