Backyard Chirper

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Weekly bird news roundup (Aug. 27)

Bird feeder/nesting box used to make people drive slower

A man, who is a lover of birds and appreciator of speed limits, has created a contraption that feeds birds and makes people go the speed limit, according to the Daily Mail.

The 63-year-old man from the U.K. built a bird feeder to look exactly like one of those cameras that takes pictures when people are driving too fast. He was fed up with people driving way over the 30 mph speed limit and the police were not doing anything to stop it.

So, he took to his garage and began building a custom bird feeder that looks remarkably like a speed camera. It only took him about a week to make and features a nesting hole where the camera would be.

Believe it or not, the bird feeder actually succeeded in slowing down traffic in the area as people were concerned about getting tickets.

The city council is ordering him to take it down, but there may be a problem. Here’s how the Daily Mail put it:

Mr Magee said that the birds have taken very fondly to the box, which they can enter from the left hand side.

He evens thinks that Pipistrelle bats have started nesting, which could be a problem for anyone who wants to remove the box as they are a protected species.

Squirrels at the feeder

While looking at some of my favorite birding blogs, I came across a post from Pat Bumstead at his Bird Canada blog about squirrels who are trying to blackmail him.

He makes an interesting point about how squirrels love to eat bird seed and if there isn’t anything for them to eat, they will virtually destroy any feeder by taking it apart. This could be a ruse on their part in order to persuade the birder to put out a squirrel feed or one with easy access to squirrels.

However, Pat suggests that it’s blackmail and shouldn’t be given into. I highly recommend checking out the post as it has some great pictures too.


Timothy Martinez Jr. is a writer and freelance journalist. His work has been published in The Times-Picayune in New Orleans, Remapping Debate in New York City and other publications. He’s been a bird lover since he was young and currently lives in New Orleans, L.A.