Talk about a postcode lottery – many of our threatened bird species would be well advised to have a national team talk. You wouldn’t believe the regional differences in our customers’ ordering patterns of nesting boxes, and it seems to us it boils down to local council policies.
Cambridge for example are very clear, setting out in their 2018 local plan exactly what is expected in terms of numbers of nesting boxes per dwelling for each of the targeted species. Architects and developers will find https://www.cambridge.gov.uk/media/6890/local-plan-2018.pdf (page 397) to be a terrific information source, whether developing in the Cambridge area or not. Sadly however, our own Wealden council in East Sussex makes no such stipulations with the consequence that habitat lost in development locally is not replaced. Before you ask, yes – we have made representations on a number of occasions. Happily our MP is on the case too, although even so, persuading a council to make its wildlife provision more robust sometimes feels like a thankless task. For many sparrows, tits and swifts in East Sussex who suddenly find their homes have vanished, the outcome is rather more extreme.
Hats off to Cambridge, Hackney, Exeter, Bristol and Havant among others for showing the way.