The birds quickly find my offerings

PUBLISHED: 13:12 11 May 2007 | UPDATED: 22:47 28 May 2010

Creating a garden from scratch is very rewarding, especially if you are creating one with wildlife in mind. I am in this lucky position at the moment, having moved fairly recently, and am spending an inappropriately large amount of time checking for any l

Creating a garden from scratch is very rewarding, especially if you are creating one with wildlife in mind.

I am in this lucky position at the moment, having moved fairly recently, and am spending an inappropriately large amount of time checking for any little bit of new growth on my newly planted trees and shrubs and staring out of my patio to see what birds are investigating my feeders, tables and birdbath.

It has amazed me how quickly the neighbourhood's birdlife has found this new food resource and habitat and particularly pleasing is how it has come without much established cover.

Overweight woodpigeons (a pair and their youngster) rule the roost currently at the ground-feeding table and slightly down the pecking order, the collared doves, come in when their larger cousins have had their fill.

It is good to be getting some birds of conservation concern in the form of house sparrows and starlings and hopefully they will become more regular as the trees grow up and they can feel a bit more secure from predators.

Luckily, cats don't seem to be a problem at all as in many areas. I have only seen one around and it didn't seem to be lurking with intent in the hope of catching any birds.

A word of advice though about being prepared. I have a nyjer seed feeder and a bag of seed, which is very attractive to goldfinches. I hadn't put it up yet as I didn't think a relatively shy bird like the goldfinch would be ready to visit just yet with the lack of cover, but to my delight (and then horror) early one morning, a pair dropped in and flew on to the pole feeder I have where the nyjer feeder could be screwed on.

One seemed happy with sunflower hearts during its visit, but I couldn't help thinking I had blown my chance of really enticing these colourful birds back. Time will tell as I now have the nyjer feeder and seed installed.

Being a big butterfly fan, buddleia bushes have been built into the plan and they should put on a spurt of growth over the next few months before their nectar-rich flowers start to attract butterflies and silvery moths.

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