Interfering with nature


15 Sep 2012 12:57AM
In the winter of 2010-2011, I started to put out fish for the kingfishers a couple of days a week, because they were looking rather thin.
I was accused of interfering with nature.
My logic was that people put up bird feeders for other birds.

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steveh5 8 90 United Kingdom
15 Sep 2012 8:06AM
Everything we as humans do interferes with nature, we are part of nature and affect it. As long as what you do is benificial to nature it provides a small counter against what everyone else does. After a look at your portfolio I would suggest your doing good on the kingfisher front. Keep up the good work.

Steveh
widtink 7 406 2 Scotland
15 Sep 2012 8:14AM
Did it help the birds through a hard winter, bet it didSmile nuff said as Steveh5 said we are all on the same "hunk of clay" so we impact on nature simply by living. You know what you are doing is beneficial to the birdsWink

Rod
franken Plus
17 4.9k 4 United Kingdom
15 Sep 2012 8:17AM

Quote:Everything we as humans do interferes with nature, we are part of nature and affect it. As long as what you do is benificial to nature it provides a small counter against what everyone else does. After a look at your portfolio I would suggest your doing good on the kingfisher front. Keep up the good work.

Steveh




I agree, Ken
mohikan22 Plus
15 2.3k 2 United Kingdom
15 Sep 2012 8:19AM
And i think your perfectly right to do so. we all do it for hedgehogs, birds, cats, ducks,seagulls (when u cant be bothered to finish those chips), squirrels etc etc. Its in our nature to help "the sorry looking animal".
im pretty sure a good raptor centre in Andover feed the "wild" kites and herons every single day.
SlowSong Plus
11 8.3k 30 England
15 Sep 2012 8:21AM
I posted this is another thread a couple of days ago.

"We wonder what's best to do. Starlings apparently are an endangered species, although you wouldn't think so from my garden population. And we're encouraged all the time to provide food for breeding birds and birds in winter by various organisations including the RSPB. If it wasn't for Bill Oddie and Birdwatch all those years ago I probably wouldn't have started putting out so much food. But once you start, and you get the same birds visit year after year, it's hard to stop.

Have I done any damage by providing food on tap? I've often beaten myself up about that too. Will the birds forget how to forage? Same for foxes and hedgehogs.

I don't know the answer. I think I'm being kind, but am I? Am I ruining the birds and animals ability to hunt and forage for themselves?"
mohikan22 Plus
15 2.3k 2 United Kingdom
15 Sep 2012 8:28AM
No i dont think so, look at the pets we keep at home. Cats still actively go out hunting for rats, its built in. my snakes i own have never been "wild" yet they retain theyre hunter instincts as ive seen when feeding, the gecko i own is captive bred and never seen the wild yet it is an active hunter, even though i can hand feed my snakes or gecko. My goldfish eat the natural bugs in the pond yet i still feed them every 3-4 days. The birds i feed come back in winter to feed, wont see them in spring much nor summer so they must get food somewhere........
15 Sep 2012 8:42AM
Will the birds forget how to forage? Same for foxes and hedgehogs Am I ruining the birds and animals ability to hunt and forage for themselves?

I don't think so. My next door neighbour feeds Foxes and Badgers (hand feeds Badgers sometimes) almost every night, but it doesn't stop them digging up my lawn for slugs and worms etc.. grrrr.... Sometimes we don't see them for weeks, but they still come back after their break, so I guess they are getting their food naturally from elsewhere?
oldblokeh 8 1.2k United Kingdom
15 Sep 2012 8:48AM
Unfortunately there's a lot of wooly thinking among some conservation groups, especially some of those devoted to particular species or groups of species. There is a complex relationship between population sizes in predator/prey situations, and interference by man can sometimes be catastrophic. Let's take an example based on, say, kingfishers. All other things being equal, there will be natural fluctuations of relative populations of kingfishers and their prey, but now let's introduce a really hard winter in which both predator and prey suffer. Both populations are reduced. Come the spring, though, the *relative* population sizes are such that there are sufficient prey fish to support the reduced brood numbers in the kingfishers. "Oh," says, well-meaning nature loving man, "I'm going to feed those kingfishers during the hard winter." So lots more kingfishers survive the winter to breed. But the prey fish are now in such short supply that demand from the kingfishers to feed their young causes a serious population crash in the prey, which is then followed by a catastrophic population crash in the kingfishers.

So when those people say that you're interfering with nature, they may just be right. Nature is more complex than you think.
ourdayphotos 7 229 Scotland
15 Sep 2012 10:17AM

Quote:In the winter of 2010-2011, I started to put out fish for the kingfishers a couple of days a week, because they were looking rather thin.
I was accused of interfering with nature.
My logic was that people put up bird feeders for other birds.

What kind of fish did you put out?
15 Sep 2012 10:38AM
What kind of fish did you put out?

First the fish I feed to the kingfishers are caught in their territory. They are Bullheads, Sticklebacks, and minnows.
It is illegal to transfer fish, because of disease. In the winter the Little Egrets come in, and also Heron. They consume fish in huge numbers.
The fish still breed in the winter but in small numbers.
In the spring when feeding young, Two kingfishers can catch 100 fish per day.
A single kingfisher will eat about 10-15 per day, depending on size.

6 Years ago I had a heart attack, I interfered with nature by dialling 999.
The last 6 years have been brilliant, especially my photographic work with Sony.
The introduction of the A99 is my current buzz. It's good to be alive.
See EPZ:
hands on of the Sony A99
widtink 7 406 2 Scotland
15 Sep 2012 11:26AM
I think sometimes we need to put things in perspective, we like to form cliques as humans and defend our own territory/beliefs etc. A good example of this are conservationists and responsible (vast majority) hunters the media would lead you to believe that these "cliques" are poles apart in their philosophy, but they have plenty in common a deep respect for nature and vast amount of knowledge. I think the Native American Indians had it spot on , yes they utilised and interfered with nature but they respected mother nature because it this meant survival.

Rod
SlowSong Plus
11 8.3k 30 England
15 Sep 2012 1:47PM
Well I hope all my wildlife visitors can fend for themselves as we're having our garden completely re-done soon. Grin
puertouk 7 1.1k 17 United Kingdom
16 Sep 2012 11:46AM
People say, should we interfere with nature? Don't us humans interfere too much? Look what we are doing to our planet. We are tearing this planet apart, bit by bit. Deforestation, hot house gases, over fishing, throwing dead fish back into the sea because they have reached there quota. Nature balances itself when we don't interfere with it. The weather is all over the place. Tenerife is becoming more of a tropical Island, rather than sub-tropical. The waters around the Canary Islands are becoming warmer and we are now seeing tropical type reefs forming according to the experts. We used to have large families of dolphins swimming around Tenerife, unfortunately they are dwindling in numbers because of over-fishing by the Spanish fishing fleets. Even in such a short time I see less dolphins swimming past when I'm sat out on my balcony and have not seen any for the past few months. I'm no flag waving conservationist, but we, as humans must realise what we are doing to our planet, and do something about it before it's too late.
Stephen
Carabosse 16 41.3k 270 England
16 Sep 2012 11:49AM
It is human nature to interfere with nature. That's our role in this planet! Wink

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