In Britain robins are often associated with gardeners, following them around as they dig the ground. People may even have robins in their gardens that are tame enough to feed from the hand.

It also means robins are incredibly easy to photograph close up and will happily pose for the camera perhaps perched on top of a garden fork.

There are a few reasons which may explain why robins appear friendlier than other birds. When robins live in the wild in woods or forests they are known to follow large mammals, such as wild boar or deer, using their inbuilt curiosity to find new ways to find food.

As the animals move around they disturb the ground bringing worms and insects to the surface which robins can easily forage on. In more urban areas robins are mimicking this behaviour by following humans, taking advantage of the freshly dug up soil to find food.

It is interesting to note that in the rest of Europe robins are much more shy and rarely leave the confines of the forest. There has long been a tradition of hunting and trapping small birds on the continent so robins have remained fearful of humans whereas in Britain robins have co-existed with humans for many years and learned that there is no threat in being close to us. In fact they may be at an advantage by being friendly towards humans as they are rewarded with food.

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