Magpies attacking blackbird and nest

  • I can’t speak for Jakeg, he wrote that he had spoken to others, but for me it was this page and others similar:

    www.rspb.org.uk/.../

    I was obviously upset to watch a magpie kill a blackbird, but I buy into the argument that humans are to blame for the habitat loss rather than corvids. I hope our magpies’ nesting is successful and that we get to see some magpie chicks but given the constant harassment from the crows I think the odds are against them.

    Back to the subject of this thread though, I think as a bystander I would like to be able to apply some DIY solution or something to give the weaker birds better odds in my garden specifically, but again it seems that the argument on whether we should interfere or not still rages on with no sign of getting resolved. Giving the weaker birds better odds would give the stronger birds worse odds. It’s a lot easier to break the balance than it is to restore it.
  • I agree. Now the crows know where the nest is, they aren't going to give up.

    Re helping weaker species, nigh on impossible IMO. Most don't interact with humans, whether it's coming to feeders, visiting gardens etc. Take house martins, which is topical for me as there has been a colony on the house for decades, long before we moved here. For them, all we can do is provide safe nest sites. Have artificial nests, up and protect and not interfere with any mud built ones that appear. Unfortunately, there is nothing else. Losing adults to sparrowhawks, eggs to woodpeckers, and whole nests to house sparrows is beyond our control, even though we have tried. We put up a screen infront of each nest but sparrows worked out how to get around it by flying along the house rather than up to it.

    Ironically, what Jake describes as doing actively encourages magpies. Bird feeding attracts them to food. It also attracts lots of small birds which again attracts magpies. Magpies are generalist predators. They are also intelligent. If people don't want magpies and predation in their gardens, the first thing to do is stop attracting them, directly or indirectly.