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This species has undergone a long-term decline and now has an extremely small range and population. Numbers are currently increasing, partly due to management actions and consequent improved breeding success. However, this improvement in its status in Morocco is very recent and the species may still be undergoing a continuing decline; in Syria its population appears to have declined dramatically in the past 20 years. The species is therefore retained as Critically Endangered because of its extremely small population undergoing continuing decline.(Photo:RSPB).
If you want to keep your feeder defrosted like one of the pros, go to
the local plumbing supply store. Not Lowes or Home Depot, they will only give you a blank stare. Here in Bend try Searing's on N.E. 2nd street. Invest the $8-10 for a clamp-on light fixture that looks like this (photo here).
Plug in a 125 Watt Infra-red light bulb, but don't get the red-glass type. Get an I.R. bulb with clear envelope, it casts a more natural light. Hang it using the adjustable, integrated clamp so it points at the feeder from one or two feet away. This is the way plumbers defrost frozen pipes. I plug mine up to a timer so it comes on an hour before sunrise and clicks off an hour after sunset.
If the avian flu did reach the United States through wild birds, some say the virus wouldn't necessarily devastate the poultry industry, because chickens are usually raised in sealed barns. But growing numbers of chickens are now raised as free-range poultry. By law, free-range birds must spend part of their lives outside, where they can mingle with wild chickens.