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On Europe's agricultural land, the bird population has declined by 50 percent since the 1980s, while that in the forests has remained relatively constant. The decline in species can therefore be attributed with a relatively high degree of certainty to our intensive agriculture with its sprays and large heavy machinery. Numerous research projects are investigating the causes in detail in order to safeguard the biodiversity of the land and with it the bird population. One of these is the British "Big Farmland Bird Count" of the "Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust".
Maximilian Hardegg, owner of the Gut Hardegg estate, has been cooperating with the latter for a long time. Biodiversity on his land and in general is a matter close to his heart. That is why an annual bird count is carried out at Gut Hardegg in cooperation with the Big Farmland Bird Count. All amateur ornithologists are also called upon to participate. We had the pleasure of accompanying the project and filming the "nature walk" with Maximilian Hardegg and son Alexius. In the training (both films in German language) required for the census, one learns everything about the most important bird species and the habitats necessary for them. Even as a hobby gardener, you can contribute a lot - the greater the biodiversity in the smallest garden and the more natural the hedges and lawns (sic!), the more beneficial they are for our birds.
By the way, the perception of these little flying wonders is also good for the soul. The more we occupied ourselves with the birds and the more attentively we paid attention to them, the more joyfully we perceived each bird. Look, a robin! Did you see the goldfinch? That was the call of a woodpecker! This positive effect on our psyche is also confirmed by the highest authorities. Not long ago, for example, the World Economic Forum published the results of a study that said that watching birds makes you as happy as a pay rise. The authors calculated that spending time in the vicinity of 14 additional bird species provided as much satisfaction as an additional $150 per month in earnings. Brought to the point in a short Facebook video (1:23 minutes). So let's put up feeders, win-win for the birds and us!
Incidentally, there are also many bird houses hanging in the forests for feeding. If you are out and about with your eyes and ears open - where there is a lot of bird noise, there are usually feeding stations - you will find them. Naturally, there is a lot of activity there, and the variety of birds is impressive and pleasing. Speaking of, did you know that birds are the direct descendants of dinosaurs?