I ‘ve been feeding birds in my London garden in Chiswick, for 25 years. Blue tits, coal tits, great tits, long-tailed tits, red poll, chaffinch, wren,, dunnock, firecrest, robin, blackbird, goldfinch, starling, jays, song thrush and the greater spotted woodpeckers visit the feeders. They especiallly like the real-suet pellets.
Green parakeets started visiting the feeders just two winters ago, There are about 5 parakeets that visit at any one time. Recently, my neighbour has complained about the noisy parakeets and insists I stop putting out bird food completely. He also says the 5 street pigeons, which inevitably turn up are fouling the place.
I have temporarily stopped feeding the birds. But the weather is getting colder , I would like to put out suet pellets for the smaller birds, within a cage, to deter large birds. However the parakeets stiil land on the cage and try to reach the suet pellets.
Weight-based feeders that seal off food to large birds are pricey, about £ 40 to £ 50
I do not mind the parakeets, they are part of our Chiswick scene. Once they settle down and start feeding, they become quieter.
What does the RSPB advise?
Hello Jeya, this sort of problem often crops up on the forum where there are disgruntled neighbours who object to bird feeders within their proximity; I think always the best solution is if you can come to an amicable understanding with your neighbour to suggest you perhaps only put one feeder out during this winter spell which should limit the amount of birds to a degree. Some people simply take a total dislike to parakeets and feral pigeons (not all folk are bird lovers ! ) mainly due to the noise and sometimes the mess caused so it is difficult to try get an even balance with your wish to continue to feed and enjoy watching the birds whilst keeping your neighbour happy. I would suggest you put up one feeder, perhaps sunflower hearts that most birds will appreciate but leave off the suet pellets and fat balls, etc., until things settle down again. More birds will visit during these colder months so it is only to be expected that winter will be a little busier than other seasons when birds need to constantly top up their energy levels. I would have a polite chat with your neighbour to put your point of view and say how much you enjoy feeding your garden birds but will help the current situation by only putting out one feeder. That way you are showing willing whilst not overdoing the feeding. Good luck and hope you and your neighbour can find an understanding to suit you both.
"Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again"
Hello Jeya, Sorry to hear that you are having a problem with the neighbour's regarding the birds. It is always a problem when neighbour's are not bird friendly. You have a great list of birds that come to visit, some of which I have not had in the garden. As Hazel has suggested maybe try one feeder at the moment and speak to the neighbour, hopefully he will be happy with the that. Good luck.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
It may be worth checking when the neighbour finds the noise at its worst and taking the feeders away for that time period - for instance if the birds come in at dawn and the neighbour works shifts then you can understand where he’s coming from. At the end of the day the birds will find somewhere to eat and only you can work out how well you need to get on with your neighbours.
My Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bobs_retired_now/
We spend 90% of net income on conservation, public education and advocacy
The RSPB is a member of BirdLife International. Find out more about the partnership
© The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) is a registered charity: England and Wales no. 207076, Scotland no. SC037654