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KEEPING YOU IN TOUCH - YOUR FREE MONTHLY NEWSPAPER DELIVERED DOOR-TO-DOOR FOR 33 YEARS ROBINS – FRIENDLY BUT FEISTY


New Tiled Roofs • New Slate Roofs Tile Repairs • Slate Repairs


UPVC Fascia and Soffit Installation UPVC Guttering and Rainwater Systems UPVC Dry Verge Caps installed on Gables Lead Work, Valleys, Chimneys etc


New Felt Roofs (10 Year Guarantee) Felt Roof Repairs


Fibreglass Flat Roofs (25 Year Guarantee) Fibreglass Flat Roofs Repairs


Keswick 01768 758717 Carlisle 01228 546795


www.matthewsroofingcumbria.co.uk KATIE DOUGLASS


Robins are one of our favourite garden visitors. The minute we start turning the soil, they hop down to start picking out tasty grubs! However, despite their endearing appearance and their friendly and accepting nature towards humans, this little resident bird has a feisty side: they are extremely territorial.


In summer, their territories are defended by the mated pair but in winter, each bird holds its individual territory, which is usually half the size of the shared summer space. The sole purpose of the red breast is for defence: the colour triggers territorial behaviour, a key part of their threat display and nothing at all to do with courtship.


Intruders are met with powerful singing, each bird trying to maintain the higher perch, ensuring they show off their colourful breast effectively. If this fails to drive the intruder away, it may then


INFO@COCKERMOUTHPOST.CO.UK


escalate to physical attack. Usually, one robin will withdraw before a fatality; however, this is not always the case and, in some populations, up to 10% of adult mortality is due to territorial clashes.


Many birds have the same territorial instincts, especially around breeding time, so we mustn’t label the robin as a violent troublemaker just yet or see their behaviour as being particularly aggressive – it’s just a normal trait seen in much of our wildlife. So, let’s celebrate the nation’s favourite garden bird.


While the robin may be a forthright and defiant defender of its territory, we can still enjoy its visits to our gardens on a cold winter’s morning, with puffed up plumage and inquisitive head cocked to one side.


ISSUE 438 | 23 JANUARY 2020 | 44


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