Tuesday, June 03, 2008

3 June: Birdwatch

The garden seems to be full of birds, feeding, bathing, squabbling, and singing.

As well as the house-martins swooping all round, there is a marauding flock of starlings which descends on the lawn looking for leather-jackets; they also feed messily from the hanging seed feeders, strewing a lot of seed on the path underneath. That benefits the dunnocks and blackbirds, all trying to feed numerous offspring. The baby dunnocks are really appealing little balls of spotted fluff with bright eyes and tiny beaks - though they grow out of this stage in about 2 days.

The seed on the path also attracts collared doves, and pigeons, which have not visited us before. (It also probably feeds mice and perhaps an odd rat, but, like slugs and snails, this is the wildlife that may not be mentioned.)

Peanuts have been put in a separate part of one of the feeders, but they have not proved popular - tits prefer the seed, or insects on the roses and the birch tree - but this week they have been a hit with a great spotted woodpecker, another new visitor. It's not clear if this bird is feeding itself or breaking up nuts and taking a beakful away for nestlings, but it certainly has been pecking busily at the peanuts.

This morning it was a very wet woodpecker.


Murph said...

I love the Great Dunnock. In fact I live with one!

Lucy said...

I love dunnocks, they seem such peacable and confiding little birds, and their song's not much but it's pleasant and you feel they're really putting their all into it...
I once saw a house sparrow making up to one like it wanted to mate with it, the dunnock was being very polit about it!