Anger as thieves plunder butterfly garden

STOLEN BIRD FEEDERS ... theft victim Rob Adair at the butterfly garden.
STOLEN BIRD FEEDERS ... theft victim Rob Adair at the butterfly garden.

A NATURE lover is furious after his bird feeders were stolen for the third time from a South Tyneside cemetery.

Every winter, Rob Adair hangs out a number of feeders in Westoe Cemetery’s ‘butterfly garden’ in South Shields.

However, over the last four months 11 containers have been taken – with four being stolen last weekend alone.

Rob, a Coastal Conservation Group member from Salisbury Street, South Shields, said: “It’s very annoying. Someone has purposely gone and removed them.

“They’ve had to actually cut the cable ties which were securing them.

“This is the third time this has happened. On the first weekend we put them up in October, five were taken. In December, another two went, and now four have been removed at some point over the weekend.

“Over the winter feeding period, I spend £120 of my own money on the equipment and food. The feeders might only cost a few pounds, but that’s not the point.”

Mr Adair, who runs Rob Adair Pet Care, uses a number of different types of feeders which store nuts and fatballs for birds.

Since he started his winter feeding regime three years ago, 37 different species of birds have been recorded at the site off Erskine Road.

He said: “Lots of people tell me that they love seeing the birds feeding there, I think it’s very educational.

“South Tyneside is very popular with birds, there’s always plenty to spot.”

Mr Adair believes his feeders keep getting stolen because the area, which was formerly the cemetery’s lodge house until it was demolished, had its grass pruned right back last year.

He added: “The grass was left to grow naturally, but I know some people complained and it was then cut right back.

“This makes it easier to spot the feeders. I think that’s why so many are being removed.”

Twitter: @ShieldsGazVez