House sparrows (Passer domesticus), once abundant in human habitat, are hardly seen these days. They usually build their nests in crevices in tile-roofed houses and in the small openings in walls that serve as ventilators. When my sister and I were kids, we would worry a lot about the safety of the tiny sparrows that used to hatch out regularly in a ventilator in the northern wall of our house. Thanks to the change in architecture and the style of construction, house sparrows have lost their “natural” habitat.
We now live in a building that doesn’t have any opening on walls above the windows, no recent building does. Every morning, a few sparrows still come to the window ledge of our kitchen, eat whatever is on offer, show their displeasure if the food isn’t up to their expectation, and thank us if it is. Over time, they have shed their fear. They keep on eating even as we watch them through the window. Amongst them is one that is particularly old. He doesn’t leave anything behind.
My wife leaves water in an earthen pot every morning on our terrace. In summer, the pot gets empty before it’s ten. Not only sparrows, but crows and shalikhs too are regular visitors to our home. Shalikhs are small brown birds that are slightly bigger than sparrows. I don’t know what they are called in English.
When a friend forwarded this appeal, I thought I would share it with you. It says you could help in conservation of sparrows by feeding them daily. You could also provide clean water for birds to drink and bathe in. You could plant some native species of plants which attract pests and birds, the former being food for the latter. If you are from
, you may SMS Mr. Kiran Boal at 98803 93743 for a free bird feeder. Bangalore