another year....same results

During the early Spring, the house sparrows took up residence in one of their terrace holes, took over what was the great tit's favourite box, both swift boxes and all remaining natural house martin nests. They also took over an artificial one. I bought a replacement great tit box just intime, and a family have fledged from there. I can't do anything about swifts or martins though. Sparrows have successfully fledged at least four broods from this house. 

The martins, surprisingly, have come in big numbers this Spring. One pair instantly took to the end artificial nest. Others have been trying other artifical ones, but have been bullied by sparrows. Three pairs decided to get building. One nest has now been completed and two others are about two thirds complete.

This morning, three male sparrows were lined up on the roof. The martins were trying to get to their nests. Almost in unison, the sparrows each picked one of the nests and went it. They become entrenched objects, and the martins have been, so far, unable to continue nest building, or in the one case, start egg laying. 

This has, to some degree or other, been going on for at least four years. There is a pattern. Clearly not 'one off'.

As I have done all the easy options, like not feeding sparrows in Winter and trying to restrict nesting sites by blocking swift boxes in Winter. My only other option now is to block the entire collection of nest boxes next Winter and leave them blocked ufn.

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