A little water goes a long way in helping birds during sizzling conditions

Swallows on telegraph wires

• Thermometers are set to sizzle this bank holiday weekend following on from the driest winter in more than 20 years
• Summer migrant birds returning from Africa such as swifts, swallows and house martins, as well as garden favourites like starlings, robins and blue tits could struggle to find a supply of water in hot conditions.
• Gardeners can help by following RSPB advice of leaving out a fresh supply of water to help birds through the breeding season.
With temperatures set to soar this bank holiday weekend and fears that the UK could face a widespread drought this summer, the RSPB is asking people to help birds through the hot conditions by making water available to them in their gardens or outdoor spaces.
Every year migrant birds such as swifts, swallows and house martins announce the arrival of the British summer as they complete a 6,000 mile migration from central and southern Africa to nest and raise their young. After the UK experienced its driest winter since 1995, these birds will arrive to conditions that will make building their nests from damp sticky mud much more difficult, which could impact on their chicks surviving.
The wildlife charity is appealing to people to put out a supply of fresh, clean water, as well as some wet mud in a shallow container like a dustbin lid, to help these migrant birds survive the arduous conditions.
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