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Rose arch in autumn with hanging bird feeder
Rose arch in autumn

with hanging bird feeder

Our feathered friend, the common house sparrow (Passer domesticus), visits our natural cottage garden every day - and he's very welcome too! However, the sparrow family is suffering badly and they "needs a little help from their friends" - guess that's us. So let's find out how we can help our sparrows survive and prosper.

House Sparrow Facts

The sparrow needs our help
© LMNH, used with permission

Why does the Sparrow Need Help?

Though there are still plenty of sparrows, there numbers have been rapidly reduced by more than 50% in Europe in the last 25 years. The rate of decline, as any natural gardener will confirm, has been increasing too - they're disappearing faster as time goes by.

In the Netherlands, they were placed on the Dutch Red List of Threatened Birds in 2004 as, although still plentiful, their numbers had declined by more than 50% since the publication of the previous list in 1994.

Sparrows love messy gardens with lots of seeds, insects and berries and, since less and less people garden the natural way, there's less and less food available for them.

As usual, where there's a problem, there's a lot of disagreement about the causes of the decline in numbers of the common sparrow.

Common house sparrow - Passer domesticus
© LMNH, used with permission

What's the Cause of the Problem?

The rise of "modern gardening" = the decline in natural gardens. Too many gardens provide very little, if any, food for birds as they are:

What can we do to Help the Sparrow? - a Gardener's Practical Guide to Natural Cottage Gardening

Gardening Guide

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