King of Excellent (according to Scaryduck)

Friday, May 6

On Sparrows

Hmmm, interesting one this...
We have a problem with birds. No, not women from Essex, but try birds, feathered, of the Passeridae variety. Namely, sparrows. The problem is they have a repeat nesting site, something that is handed down in knowledge from mummy sparrow to baby sparrow, and they return to the same place year after year after year. And this particular family's nesting site is our porch. Last year I removed the old nest, in the hope it would stop their return. It didn't, and they're back. In fact, they're rebuilding the nest as we speak, by ingeniously sticking mud to the wall and then poking small sticks into the mud. A few people gave advice, and one of the more common ones was "spray the wall with cillit bang. They don't like the smell." They don't seem to mind it in fact.
Then I started to read up about them yesterday. First of all, remember where they spend their winter. Yes, Africa. They then fly back 'faaasands' of miles to the same place. So, how can I remove them??? And more importantly, they're listed as a black nester. In other words, it's actually illegal for me to interfere with the nest. So, I broke the news to TDT last night. The bad news for TDT is she's terrified of birds (one too many films involving Alfred Hitchcock and Tippi Hedren I suspect), and so each time you leave the house you get two swallows dive bombing at you, in protest to you invading their (!) space. Still, it'll only be a couple of months. I can then remove the next again, and next year I'll put some fine chicken wire up into the porch to discourage them. I'm sure they'll find somewhere else. We have loads of trees around here.
So why do I still feel guilty?