A BIRD lover fears his feathered friends may be forced to starve because the foot-and-mouth crisis is preventing him from raising cash to feed them.

Bill Higman, who keeps 15 owls at his sanctuary in Preston, usually shows off his birds at displays across the country.

But with the many areas of the countryside cut off by the farming crisis, Mr Higman said he was starting to feel the financial pinch, and he has appealed to Bolton residents to help him out.

He said he had just £17 left to feed his birds, which included barn, European and Bengal eagle owls. It costs £20 every fortnight, however, to ensure they are properly fed.

Mr Higman, also known as Barn Owl Bill, can be contacted on 01772 463221.