The Bird Keepers Association founded by Malcolm Thornton and Len March in August 2014 has recently strengthened its focus on its aviculturists roots by supporting a local farmer and the Essex Wildlife Trust by creating a British bird sanctuary within the perimeters of a local farm with the installation of appropriate nesting sites.
Naturally information relating to the location of the site must be kept secret due to possible disturbance of the birds, however regular reports will be received from the monitoring procedures carried out by the Essex Wildlife Trust which will be made available for members and supporters.
The idea was conceived by BKA member Dave Clarke, an avid bird keeper himself, who spent many hours negotiating with the farmer and officials of the Essex Wildlife Trust to bring about a new Essex based bird sanctuary.
The hard work had barely begun however! With the able assistance of Lee Bennett a BKA member and an accomplished carpenter / joiner who gave his valuable time to construct over 10 individual next boxes including a special barn Owl nesting site, arrangements could be made to carry out the installations.
On a cold and overcast day in January members Peter Coleing, Dave Clarke with his wife Marion and Malcolm Thornton arrived on site armed with ladders, screwdrivers, drills and of course a camera to record this unusual event!
Marion had of course thought of bringing sustenance to keep the will power going and the energy levels maintained with hot cups of coffee and a BBQ
Dave had been instrumental in association with the Essex Wildlife Trust in planning the installations which had been carefully selected to maximize the opportunities of attracting birds to the site. The installation of the Barn Owl nest box had to be manhandled up a selected tree. It was necessary for Dave’s work colleague to climb the tree and to assist by hauling the box into position enabling Dave to fasten timber battens to the tree to stabilize the installation of the box. All deserved a hot drink and one of Marion’s beef burgers at the end of the struggle!
The BKA are hoping that by reporting on the breeding habits of our own native British birds it will generate a more positive approach from potential members attitude towards the BKA and not forgetting those who believe irrationally that all bird keeping hobbyists maintain birds in cages! Please keep an eye on all reports which will be reported on the BKA web site www.bkauk.org.uk