Sunday, 20 December 2009

Garden update - Blackbird Wars

The very cold weather is bringing plenty of activity into the garden as there are plenty of food options  that I have put out.

Up to 20 blackbirds this morning. It has been fascinating watch them take their little bits of space and see
them studiously watching their nearby rival, before flying at them in a threat display and  watch that displaced bird moving off to displace  another bird ....and so on.  It is like watching a sequence of chess moves.

There have also been significant numbers of sparrows and wood pigeon.chaffinches and now coming in large numbers too.

An occasional Redwing or two drops into the apple tree or maybe have a bath in the pond.

It is a constant job keeping the ice clear on the pond - it is now over two inches thick, but the birds are constantly using it to drink.  So please make sure you put out water for them in your garden a couple of times a day.

Early yesterday morning looking out the window, a very large dark shape came across and settled on the top of a neighbours tree.  Looking much larger than the usual Crow or Rook, a quick check though the binos revealed it to be a Raven.  I have seen Raven overhead in Stratford a few times but not settled like.  It sat there for about five minutes until it was intercepted by a Crow which forced it away.  But a great sight nonetheless.

I spent some time freezing my feet in the hide yesterday with little result, but will put some Blackbird images up to go with this story in a while.

No more sign of the female Blackcap that I saw last week.  Maybe I was just too hopeful that I would have another garden resident.  If she has any sense she will be a good few hundred miles south in Europe where it will be much warmer.  But we are getting a couple of regular Pied Wags in to make up for it.


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