1. IMPORTANT - NEW & EXISTING MEMBERS

    E-MAIL SERVER ISSUES

    We are currently experiencing issues with our outgoing email server, therefore EXISTING members will not be getting any alert emails, and NEW/PROSPECTIVE members will not receive the email they need to confirm their account. This matter has been escalated, however the technician responsible is currently on annual leave.For assistance, in the first instance, please PM any/all of the admin team (if you can), alternatively please send an email to:

    [email protected]

    We will endeavour to help as quickly as we can.
    Dismiss Notice

I never hear warnings not to cut trees/hedgerows in nesting season - I'm going to email RSPB ...

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by Pink678, Apr 1, 2024.

Tags:
  1. noisette47

    noisette47 Total Gardener

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2013
    Messages:
    5,944
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Lot-et-Garonne, Aquitaine
    Ratings:
    +14,329
    Isn't it a miracle that there are any birds left at all, considering that the first horse-drawn hedgecutter was invented in 1854 and the first hand-held one in 1940?
    I gardened professionally in UK for 12 years and in my own garden for 25 and don't remember any issues whatsoever with cutting hedges leading to bird fatalities. The one occasion that a nestfull of baby blackbirds were picked off within ten minutes of leaving their nest was due to our neighbour's Jack Russell taking them.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • JWK

      JWK Gardener Staff Member

      Joined:
      Jun 3, 2008
      Messages:
      30,872
      Gender:
      Male
      Location:
      Surrey
      Ratings:
      +46,122
      Our cat has a bell and she can run, jump and catch prey without jingling it.

      It is also illegal for anyone to cut hedges between 1st march and 31st July, no need to send emails, report offenders to the authorities.
       
    • RowlandsCastle

      RowlandsCastle Gardener

      Joined:
      Mar 21, 2024
      Messages:
      143
      Gender:
      Male
      Location:
      North Kent
      Ratings:
      +742
      My neighbours has informed me that they have a tree surgeon coming in first thing tomorrow morning. Trees will be cut well back, bushes halved. Oh yes - and did I want the pieces of my hedge, returned?
       
    • Mrs. B.

      Mrs. B. Gardener

      Joined:
      Mar 13, 2024
      Messages:
      272
      Gender:
      Female
      Location:
      The Shire
      Ratings:
      +560
    • Mrs. B.

      Mrs. B. Gardener

      Joined:
      Mar 13, 2024
      Messages:
      272
      Gender:
      Female
      Location:
      The Shire
      Ratings:
      +560
      Now there are more people/buildings, fewer trees, and now many bird species are in decline. Should we just chop things whenever we want because it's convenient for us?
       
    • glosmike

      glosmike Gardener

      Joined:
      Jul 30, 2012
      Messages:
      52
      Gender:
      Male
      Ratings:
      +75
      I think more attention on this on tv programmes like countryfile might help as well as rspb leafleting etc.
      I always leave my hedges until August but my neighbour cuts his side whenever he feels like it .. I’ve pointed out politely that there will be birds nesting in the hedge but his response was “oh I don’t think so” … he being a member of the Green Party and very committed to recycling, cleaning up waste on the roadside locally etc etc I just can’t fathom it to be honest !
       
    • RowlandsCastle

      RowlandsCastle Gardener

      Joined:
      Mar 21, 2024
      Messages:
      143
      Gender:
      Male
      Location:
      North Kent
      Ratings:
      +742
      I've checked the hedge - there doesn't appear to be any nests. There definitely aren't any in the trees, but the birds do use them.

      I get frustrated when my wife vacates me house to allow me an afternoon nap - then I find she's pruned flowers off bushes, denying bees their nectar.
      Sigh!
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
      • noisette47

        noisette47 Total Gardener

        Joined:
        Jan 25, 2013
        Messages:
        5,944
        Gender:
        Female
        Location:
        Lot-et-Garonne, Aquitaine
        Ratings:
        +14,329
        My point was that, from personal experience, the disturbance to nesting birds is exaggerated. My hedges are chock-full of blackbirds and sparrows. They reproduce between 2 and 4 times a year. They sit tight while the hedges are cut and I've certainly never found evidence of an abandoned nest with either eggs or nestlings.
        Golden orioles nest in the oleander 'hedge' that grows at the edge of the terrace. The constant comings and goings on the terrace, and the proximity of two cats doesn't seem to faze them.
         
        • Informative Informative x 2
        • Agree Agree x 1
        • Dovefromabove

          Dovefromabove Keen Gardener

          Joined:
          Mar 13, 2024
          Messages:
          441
          Gender:
          Female
          Location:
          Central Norfolk
          Ratings:
          +1,321
          IME there’s a huge difference between the impact on nesting birds of ‘lightly trimming a hedge’ which is what it sounds like you’re talking about @noisette47 :smile: compared with the impact of ‘cutting back’ a hedge which will involve cutting into and removing mature branches and foliage, risking the abandonment of the nest and revealing nests to predators and increasing the impact of wind, rain and strong sunlight on nestlings.

          They are two very different operations. In the UK the first is not banned during the nesting period. The second (with a few tightly restricted exceptions) certainly is banned.
           
          • Like Like x 1
          • fairygirl

            fairygirl Keen Gardener

            Joined:
            Oct 3, 2020
            Messages:
            648
            Occupation:
            retired
            Location:
            west central Scotland
            Ratings:
            +1,196
            My understanding is that it's advised, but not a full on, legal requirement, that people try to avoid cutting hedges from 1st March, but here, birds aren't even starting to build nests, at the start of March. They're only just starting to pair up at that time, and maybe check out nest sites.
            It's great to make people aware of the potential problems, but surely the type of hedge and it's site are also factors. A small, narrow hedge is generally less likely to have birds nesting than a large, wide one. The info farmers are meant to adhere to about early/late cutting would therefore be slightly different from someone with a small, domestic hedge.

            I looked at an RSPB site yesterday, and it certainly didn't seem to be stating that it was a law - it was about timing and checking the hedge first. Of course, common sense nowadays is anything but common!
             
            • Agree Agree x 1
            • Obelix-Vendée

              Obelix-Vendée Gardener

              Joined:
              Mar 13, 2024
              Messages:
              267
              Gender:
              Female
              Occupation:
              Retired
              Location:
              Vendée, France.
              Ratings:
              +761
              @RowlandsCastle youneed to hide the secateurs and scissors!!

              The local council here is very diligent at hedge cutting along public roads and, as we're rural, that includes tracks only passable in tractors and off-roadersor on foot or horse-back. They get it all done by mid March. After that they trim the ground level growth in verges and ditches but then leave that alone till late September so all the critters and buzzies can feed, breed and shelter.

              There are signs up explaining to grockles that the verges are left long for wildlife so they don't compalin it's tatty.
               
              • Like Like x 2
              • KT53

                KT53 Gardener

                Joined:
                Mar 13, 2024
                Messages:
                52
                Gender:
                Male
                Ratings:
                +93
                @fairygirl So many dates given for things horticultural or agricultural are pretty arbitrary. The date difference between 'planty things' happening in the South of England and Central or Highland Scotland can often literally be measured in weeks. The 'Chelsea Chop' is a case in point. Some gardening programmes used to effectively put it out there that if you didn't do the chop on that day the world would end tomorrow. People just need to use common sense although that doesn't seem to be all that common any more.
                 
                • Like Like x 2
                • fairygirl

                  fairygirl Keen Gardener

                  Joined:
                  Oct 3, 2020
                  Messages:
                  648
                  Occupation:
                  retired
                  Location:
                  west central Scotland
                  Ratings:
                  +1,196
                  It's why it's so frustrating when presenters on TV shows etc give generalisations about planting @KT53. You'd think by now they'd understand that we don't all live in the south of the UK.
                  As for the Chelsea Chop - it's always being recommended for Sedums/Hylotelephiums. They'd have to be big enough here by the end of May for them to need cutting back.
                  We're 3 to 4 weeks behind up here, depending on how far north you are, and which side, hence my comments earlier. Perhaps they need to change that phrase about common sense ;)
                   
                • Anguisfragilis

                  Anguisfragilis Apprentice Gardener

                  Joined:
                  Mar 15, 2024
                  Messages:
                  2
                  Gender:
                  Male
                  Ratings:
                  +6
                  It’s important to be accurate as this topic is full of misconceptions. There is no prohibition on hedge cutting. No legal restrictions. It is illegal to damage an active birds nest without licence. It is also illegal to disturb a subset of species (Schedule 1 species). The majority are not schedule 1 so you have to demonstrate than direct damage is being caused. Contractors who state that they check are on a sticky wicket as they need to be able to demonstrate competence at surveying for nests and also have a process in place for the work should they find one.
                   
                  • Like Like x 1
                  • Mrs. B.

                    Mrs. B. Gardener

                    Joined:
                    Mar 13, 2024
                    Messages:
                    272
                    Gender:
                    Female
                    Location:
                    The Shire
                    Ratings:
                    +560
                    [QUOTE="Obelix-Vendée, post:

                    There are signs up explaining to grockles that the verges are left long for wildlife so they don't compalin it's tatty.[/QUOTE]

                    There was a post on our local fakebook page once, asking the horse owners next to us to not feed hay near the fence as the public footpath was getting muddy. In a field, in winter, disgraceful! :biggrin:
                     
                    • Funny Funny x 1
                    Loading...

                    Share This Page

                    1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
                      By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
                      Dismiss Notice