In Napoli we have a terrace where we provide water for some pigeons. In the past two days they, and the seagulls which normally patrol the area have disappeared. So have the sparrows and in the evening even the swallows. These are all the birds we usually have in summer, with a pair of hawks who stop by now and then to prey on the other birds.
Last night we began to be concerned but had no idea of what is happening. This morning we postulate that perhaps it is connected to the corona virus… few people are in the streets, shops are closed, which means no food scraps available for pigeons and city seagulls.
Well, a working hypothesis… we read a few days ago that rats are invading homes; they depended on restaurants’ garbage, which is no longer there.
Cities support so much life beside humans, yet only when the humans act socially in our typical messy ways, leaving food for other animals inadvertently.
We do not exactly miss the pigeons and gulls, and wish them well wherever they have gone.
But what is a city without sparrows?