• Alderton’s Observations [July 11]

    Alderton’s Observations [July 11]

    15th July 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/BFSmith. Kea: notoriously inquisitive, this species suffers from being offered unsuitable food. It’s now officially Endangered   Individual bird breeders must be involved more in essential conservation projects – zoos aren’t enough, argues David   LET’S set the scene…

  • Nest evolution: from ground to cavity

    Nest evolution: from ground to cavity

    26th June 2018

    Photo: Gerhard Gellinger. Paul discusses how birds have evolved to build nests   In the first of three articles on nesting, Paul Donovan investigates how the technique of incubation has evolved   SOMETHING we take for granted in bird behaviour is…

  • Psittacine progress

    Psittacine progress

    22nd June 2018

    Photo: Les Rance. A cock Pennant’s waiting patiently for his hen to hatch   Turks going great guns, Pennant’s promising, kings not off the mark yet: an absorbing season so far for Les Rance   HAVING written three short articles about…

  • Island hopper of the Pacific

    Island hopper of the Pacific

    18th June 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/wannachat. Nicobar pigeons: even from this angle the nest looks more solid than the flakey affairs built by most species of pigeon   With its odd stocky build and ornate hackles, the Nicobar pigeon doesn’t look an ace…

  • Winning with my Wilson’s

    Winning with my Wilson’s

    16th June 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/noicherrybeans. Streaked spiderhunter (Arachnothera magna): a species Geoff owned in the early 1990s   After tough challenges in the late 1960s, Geoff Gradwell bounced back with a collection even more varied than before. Before too long, he was…

  • Screech Radio: why I’m playing swift calls in my back garden

    Screech Radio: why I’m playing swift calls in my back garden

    14th June 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/Neil Bromhall. Adult swift with two chicks. Swifts usually nest in holes and cavities in building roofs, but new construction methods have made these in short supply   After Tony Tilford saw how edible-nest swiftlet numbers have been boosted in…

  • Our Alexandrine adventure

    Our Alexandrine adventure

    12th June 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/Wang LiQiang. Alexandrine pair When Canadian birdkeeper Peter Mostert was asked for help in rehousing a mixed collection of Alexandrines and other parrot-like birds, he couldn’t resist the challenge YOU never know what’s going to happen when you answer the phone.…

  • Big boss of the New World

    Big boss of the New World

    5th June 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/Iaranik. Greater rheas in a grainfield in Mecklenburg-West Pomerania, Germany. These birds can be kept alongside farm animals, although care should be taken to ensure they are introduced in separate enclosures nearby at first Like the ostrich in Africa,…

  • Words of wisdom

    Words of wisdom

    1st June 2018

    Photo: Donald Skinner-Reid. Scots fancy colour plates from Donald’s book, sold to him by Norwich breeder Gerry Parker   More than 100 years after it was first published, John Robson’s Canaries, Hybrids and British Birds in Cage and Aviary is still…

  • Feather by Feather

    Feather by Feather

    25th May 2018

    Photo: © Shutterstock.com/Piotr Krzeslak   Jarrod Cotter turns his attention to the cuckoo, whose characteristic call that once announced the arrival of spring is now rarely heard in the British countryside   THE cuckoo is a dove-sized bird with ash-grey upperparts,…