The Birds Need Shelter Too

Any structure that gives shelter from the rain without being a totally enclosed building can be called a canopy and with the British weather as it is there are more of these structures than perhaps any other country per capita.

Except on those very rare hot days which in England are anything over a temperature of twenty five centigrade, and often called a heat-wave, the natives are not keen to stand in it!

It’s not just humans who like to stand under shelter in the rain; many animals don’t like it either and for at least one beautiful creature it can even be fatal.

The Barn Owl which is so called because it likes to live amongst the timbers of open barns, – which is of course a structure one can call a canopy-, cannot fly in the rain.

There is a design fault to this beautiful bird and that is a problem of being the exact opposite of a duck off which the water runs and having instead a problem with absorption of water.

A few years ago during a particularly wet springtime these birds had to rely on catching rodents in the barns to feed their chicks. When there was no food left the adults had no option but to fly outside in the night rain.

Waterlogged, they would fall to earth and many perished to the dreaded fox. In that one spring the estimated number of pairs in Britain fell from five thousand to less than two thousand in the whole of the country.

We erect canopies o protect not just ourselves but cars and bicycles. With cars they are usually called carports and are much more common in hot climates where the constant hot sun can have a serious detrimental impact on the paintwork.

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