As we are a British manufacturing company and we make dog beds, we obviously have a lot of the inner stuff lying around. When you make smart, thick and warm futon mattresses using polyester hollow fibre, you can’t avoid spilling a little outside in the yard from time to time. This is to the absolute delight of the birds around the premises. There are a few trees here and a good amount of bird life and we encourage this by feeding them in the winter. We have no end of little tits, sparrows and finches and we have starlings, crows and black birds. We also have woodpeckers and the delightful wrens.
We also have nice and stormy weather here in Scotland and every now and then, as you would expect, you see a disused nest on the ground. This is an opportunity for looking more closely to see what the birds build their nests from. Yes, you have guessed it!! From the hollow fibre, we use for our dog beds. Birds nests would normally be build from small sticks, mud, moss and leaves and often you will see horse hair or even farmers’ twine woven into it all. The lining of many nests is often feathers from the bird it self. Not here….. we find the local birds nests are pretty much synthetic with polyester fibres woven into the nest, replacing many items like the moss and leaves. I guess it’s the perfect kind of insulation (as it is for dogs) and probably nice and easy to work with when you only have a beak.
I looked out on the grass outside the work shop one day and saw a black bird hopping around a piece of dog bed fluff turning it over and over considering whether it would make the right kind of stuffing for her nest. She looked like a customer in the haberdashery or curtain department at John Lewis, trying to think how the textiles would fit into her interior design. In the end it got her thumbs up and she flew off with it.
I sometimes wonder if all these nests are used year after year as they are not quite as biodegradable as the naturally made ones. Perhaps the fluff from our dog beds is making the local song birds’ nests longer lasting and recyclable…..