Taken with a degree of sadness. We (Essex) like many areas in the UK (as confirmed by London Zoo) have been suffering a decline in wild birds due to a disease that effects their crop making them unable to swallow food and ultimately starve to death. It can be passed via saliva or droppings. It is parasitic in nature and whilst there is a treatment by the time you are able to catch a wild bird it is generally too late. This year we have lost six finches and a Dove that was taken to a wildlife centre still alive. It is not associated with food stations and in any case ours are regularly cleaned and replenished. If you look on line at RSPB sites and London Zoo you can obtain further information. The vets at the zoo are desperate to acquire the bodies of freshly deceased birds for research.
Apparently this disease has been recorded globally.
Morbid but you need to know
Wildlife and nature
NaturesHaven, Jasper87, gwynn56 and 12 more