Starlings and protecting hedgerows

This little starling chick fell from a nest yesterday. The birds were nesting under our roof tiles and this is their second clutch. Unfortunately, we did not have ladder tall enough to get the chick back. The kids fed it a few worms, which it was more than happy to eat. We moved it under the sage bush for a bit of shade from the sun, but still just beneath the nest, in the hope that the parent birds would continue to fed it. This morning it had disappeared.

Starling chick

Starling chick

Starling chick

Starling chick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile there may have been other casualties this week, as the council in it’s wisdom, decided to cut the hedgerow that runs along our road. Under the Irish Wildlife Act of 1976 (and Wildlife Amendment Act 2000), hedgerows are not supposed to be cut from the 1st March to the 31st August. However, councils can cite health and safety as a reason for cutting. When I rung the council, this is what I was told. They are resurfacing the road and it was a heath and safety issue for the workers. To be honest, I find this hard to fathom as the hedge was cut back in last winter.

As Ireland has a relatively little woodland, hedgerows are a very important habitat for all sorts of animals. Just as an example, they provide nesting habitats for over 55 bird species that are regularly recorded in Birdwatch Ireland’s Countryside Bird Survey.  It is estimated that Ireland has around 300,000km of hedgerow. Irish hedgerows come in all shapes and sizes.

Double hedge

Double hedge with hawthorn trees

Wind-shaped hawthorn hedge on west coast

Wind-shaped hawthorn hedge on west coast

 

 

 

 

 

Holly and Fuschia Hedgerow

Holly and Fuschia Hedgerow

 

 

 

 

 

Managed Hedgerow

Managed Hedgerow

Hedgerows in the landscape

Hedgerows in the landscape

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Starlings and protecting hedgerows

  1. gaiainaction

    Thanks for interesting write up. I have nests of Robins and Blackbirds in the very hedge of our garden, this is lovely. When I still used to drive up to work daily, it was the Hedgerows I used to watch, so much wealth – plants and birds and shrubs. Some years the Blackthorn gives a such a show you would think that it had snowed! Love the Hawthorn too, I made some Hawthorn honey this year from the berries. (I’m in West Cork) Lots of Hawthorn around here.

    Like

    Reply
    1. Murtagh's Meadow Post author

      West Cork! – great to hear from another Irish blogger. Would be interested to hear your hawthorn honey recipe – sounds lovely. I think we had a late frost around May which did for the hawthorn flowers – it’s not usual, even for us, to get frost that late but I expect if your in West Cork you have even less frost than us:)

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

Comments welcome

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s