Male blackcap, ruling the roost.

In the end, I decided to dismantle the large feeding station in my back garden, since none of the birds could get near it.  The male blackcap was able to defend it so well that the rest of the birds gave up trying to get near the feeders in the station.  Though some of the goldfinches (and the resident robin) have been able to defy the blackcap, most of the birds just avoided the feeding station completely. I’m still getting plenty of avain visitors – just not to the station. The blackcap is now spending  less time in the garden – probably because it is also trying to drive off birds from feeders in neighbouring gardens. I’ve also spread even more feeders all around the garden, so it’s impossible for both male and female blackcaps to keep the rest of the birds away. The consumption of seed has increased back to pre-blackcap days (i.e. I have to refill the feeders every day), and the number of goldfinches visiting the gardens has increased again.