Our birds have suddenly stopped coming..

Hello, I'm after a little advice, or some possible reasons..

We have a feeder in the garden, but have never been able to attract the small, pretty birds. Instead, we proudly feed a whole gang of magpies, jackdaws, and three crows, plus pigeons of course (!) and one blackbird. We have about 8 of each. Due to the rabble, we stopped topping up the feeders at dusk to avoid the morning scramble and to ease our concerns of upsetting the neighbours. The gang visit from around 10am each morning, and 2/3pm in the afternoons. 

Yesterday we had a few in the morning, not the usual number but we thought nothing of it. And that was it, nothing since, save for one pigeon this morning.

Our neighbours put up a noisy scarer a few years ago when we first tried with the birds, it sounded like a bird's distress call. This time around though we can hear nothing.

Is this usual? Is there anything that might have happened or been placed to deter all of them? They were quite ballsy and would shout at us while filling the feeders up (trays more than hangers, of course!). We are quite disappointed and concerned, what could have happened? We can't find any sign of deterrent in neighbouring gardens (obviously we can only see a little over our fences. Do you think it is worth approaching the neighbours? They are all elderly and quite animal unfriendly, so it wouldn't surprise us sadly!

Thanks for any ideas!

  • Hi! I’m not remotely knowledgeable, but it could be something as simple as some good food somewhere else? I had about 20 sparrows here for suet cakes, but now even though I leave great birdseed for them, they’ve disappeared from my feeder and are next door aways in the grass & in someone else’s back yard. I can’t afford the suet cakes at the moment but it looks like they’re doing more than fine on their own. It’s been a good summer here so far without the extreme horrid heatwaves, so maybe it’s a bumper year for them?
    I don’t know anything about noise deterrents, but maybe Now’s a good time to try and get smaller birds to your garden. I’d assume if you can hear them, they’ll likely have an eye on what’s going on food-wise with you. I found a video on using a dog crate as a bird feeder. They put theirs on tall posts, but I’ve just put mine on an old bar table outside and it works a treat. I hang a suet cake feeder from the top and there’s plenty of space for ground feeding as well (I’ve just bought a raised ground feeder to go in there). You just need to drill a few holes in the plastic base. Just Google “dog crate bird feeder” and you’ll see what I mean. I don’t have as much of an issue with big birds - a few pigeons and a crow family I feed separately. The crows seem to adore soaked dry mealworms & no one else is eating them, so they don’t seem interested in the other feeders I have. May be worth trying the crate as when the big ones come back they won’t bully others out?