Flylady Photography by Wendy Cooper

Garden Birdwatch

Allsorts! > Garden Birdwatch
01/02/2015 - 16:18

Well the other weekend, I set myself up in the garden, well wrapped up against the cold, to watch and count the birds visiting my garden.  On one side of the garden, there is a big bay tree and a nectarine tree, which have feeders placed here and there amongst the branches.  I sit up near the house, on the opposite side with a cuppa and the camera and watch the regulars coming and going. 

The feeders contain kibbled peanuts and sunflower hearts, fatballs or  a standard birdseed mix with some dried mealworms added in, all of which, when it is cold, disappears at a steady rate.  There is also a small pond and a birdbath where the birds drink and bathe.  

We have a regular flock of sparrows who congregate in the honeysuckle at the end of the garden and chatter away until mealtime when they move up near to the baytree and then take turns at the feeders, often with one coming down first, then calling the others to join

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There appear to be a good 2 dozen of them who have a regular feeding circuit around the back gardens. They most often go for the seed instead of the peanuts.  

As well as the sparrows we have quite a few Blue and Great tits visit; again the 'set route' into the garden seems to be from the honeysuckle on the back fence, then via particular branches in the nectarine tree.  

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Last year, a single Coal tit started to visit, this year, there are definitely 2 visiting and feeding and possibly another one...  they flit so fast, but follow the same routine everytime...  
 
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The Long Tailed Tits, on the other hand, make a mass arrival, heard long before you see them, heading straight for the fatball feeders..  
 
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Although occasionally one of them will just stop still long enough.....
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There are currently four robins who have taken claim of the garden, whilst there is a lot of chasing going on, I have not seen them fighting, indeed it is possible that (after watching their behaviour other years) it may be early stages of courtship... The robins usually go to the feeding station for seed and mealworms or also have a forage about in the lawn. 
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Through the winter and definitely in the spring, there are always plenty of Dunnocks visiting either for food or courtship; at the moment it's food.  The Dunnocks hide deep in the baytree or in the honeysuckle on the back fence before cautiously venturing out to peck about in the lawn.  
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One of the neighbourhood blackbirds popped by, there seem to be a few about who patrol the gardens, but only come down to feed when it is very quiet, this was just a passing visit, before he flew off again.
 
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And finally, a visitor from the nearby woodland, who has found an easy source of food at mine and neighbouring gardens feeding stations!  This little one has the nuts off the hazel tree and will chance his luck at the feeders.  His approach is usually a scrabble up the fence, or, as here, peering into the garden to see if it's clear to come in.
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