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The "Saving Species" programme on BBC R4 has mentioned that mistletoe is in decline. Now, whilst I do not doubt this, I personally seem to be seeing more mistletoe.
I grew up around Hamble in Hampshire in the fifties and I cannot recall ever seeing mistletoe in the wild. Hamble is not exactly the countryside so I was not surprised but I saw none in the New Forest or on trips camping in the west country or Wales. I knew it was a parasite but did not know where it grew or on what trees.
In the nineties, I started noticing mistletoe clumps on trees between Southampton and Romsey and between then and now I have seen more and more. It is more noticeable in the winter due to the lack of trees.
Saving Species mentions orchards as hosts but the trees I notice are not apples trees. A couple that are quite close to where I live in Havant (again, not the countryside) are oaks.
Are my observations in line with what is really happening to mistletoe? If in decline in orchards in the west country, is is taking hold elsewhere, on a diversity of trees? What environmental factors would have allowed its spread? Reduction in air pollution since smokeless fuel was introduced? Newer bird species?