Neighbours want me to remove feeder

Hi everyone,

I've been feeding birds in my garden (using a squirrel proof cage feeder) for around 10 years. I have a large group of goldfinches, a pair of bull finches (now with 3 young ones), green finches, chafinches, various tits, robins and a few sparrows. I live in a building containing 4 flats.  We all have our own gardens - 2 at the front and 2 at the back. Mine is at the front. One of the neighbours at the back had building work done over the summer and since then there has been a problem with rats in the back gardens. Apparently when the pest controller was out he said that no one should be feeding birds and the neighbours want me to take my feeder down. We live in a terrace with no connection between the back and front gardens apart from  going through the house. I feel that's it's really unfair that I'm being asked take the feeder down when no rats have ever been seen in the front garden. One of the neighbours suggested that I take it down temporarily until the rats go away but I'm really afraid of the birds dying or going elsewhere and not coming back. What does everyone think I should do?

  • I do know there are rules and regulations about feeding birds sadly as I found when someone complained about a relative of mine feeding birds. I looked into this and found some details. I will try and find the link about this.



    Hope this link works as i had a relative warned as well earlier this year by the local authority after someone complained.



  • Hi B Troot, I don’t know the details but surely this relates to people indiscriminately leaving and throwing out left over food and slices of bread for birds. Not people providing selected food in bird feeders. There”s a world of difference here Maybe you could explain this to your neighbours?

    What does the rspb have to say about this?

    Kind regards, Judith
  • In reply to Hey Jude:

    Thanks Judith. Yes, I know that there are people who leave food scraps out and so on but I never do that! I have taken the feeder down temporarily but plan to put it back up in a couple of weeks. Hopefully yhte birds will come back!
  • In reply to THOMO:

    I love the quote at the top: 'If you cannot cry within your own house, or feed the birds in your garden, then the home has no significant meaning as a private space’. That's exactly how I feel.
  • I hope that you're able to keep your feeder. It's fantastic that you have bullfinches (a favourite of mine) and so many other birds. At the end of the day you're doing a positive thing for the birds, you're doing it responsibly, and surely you would have rats in your garden if the feeder was the cause.

    Looking at Birds on Purpose

  • Underneath my neighbours bird feeder is a large amount of food chips that attract rats - not very pleasant although another neighbour has a couple of very happy cats. I love birds ( and my neighbours ) but the cats drag rats out through the day there are so many and also bring them home to kill at night. We all find this disgusting but as a community don't want to upset the birdfeeder couple. Shouldn't all bird feeders have large trays under them to catch the dropped bits of food - would that help? I joined the RSPB and have a bird bath that's used daily and I love wildlife but I don't want rats in my tiny garden or worse finding a way our homes.
  • Please do not be bullied into removing it! Just because a builder said a bird feeder shouldn't be present does not make it gospel. I agree that if no rats in your garden, then its actually the flat in question, maybe they live like pigs?

    If it was me, Im against being told what to do!, Id wait until environmental health contacted me, even then I would dispute it was my issue and appeal any decision.

    What about people who put down cat food for hedgehogs? I have loads and loads of feeders and there is a lot of it scattered about! I sweep it into my garden but I've found the hedgehogs have been helping.

    PLEASE DO NOT BE BULLIED BY THESE IDIOTS, you clearly love birds, as I do, so enjoy them and put out more feeders! If desperate you could try a large plate or catchment area underneath and empty this regularly.

    Feel sorry for you, I'd hate to have neighbours like that!
  • In reply to Patsy952 :

    Thanks for your reply. I've actually ordered a tray to go under my feeder. I don't think many seeds are left on the ground at the end if the day because sparrows and robins eat them but hopefully the tray will demonstrate that I've given it some thought.
  • In reply to tropical1979:

    Thanks for your support! I have ordered a tray which I'll put under the feeder when I put it back out. I was also thinking that I could bring the feeder in at night so there can be no possibility of rats eating out of the feeder at night.