Sunday, January 20, 2013

Viva Le Twig!

Looked out of the kitchen window this morning to see a single Fieldfare feeding on bits of apple on the snow-covered lawn and five birds in the hedgerow. Half-a-dozen Redwing flew low over the house earlier and along with the now resident Song Thrush, a Mistle Thrush just outside of the front door feeding on more apple and the twenty or so Blackbirds hanging around it is clear that the recent weather has forced birds to move around in their search for food. So five species of thrush in the garden at the same time. After the earlier posts lamenting the absence of these birds this is quite a surprise.
Better yet was the male Blackcap on THE twig. I had just come in from throwing some seed out when I caught sight of the bird but I didn't have time to get the camera and compose a decent shot. So Blackcap pics are a bit hurried.
This morning the twig has provided support for this Dunnock:
The BTO are currently conducting a survey on Blackcaps in the garden and to quote "More than a thousand records have now been submitted through the Garden Blackcap Survey, a behavioural study of Blackcaps in winter gardens. The current freezing conditions across much of the country are set to bring even more of these birds to feeders, so please let us know what they eat and how they interact with other visitors." The Garden Blackcap Survey runs during January only. Apparently Blackcaps can be quite aggressive to other species whilst feeding in gardens. The bird in my garden was quite benign and just concentrated on getting seeds into its belly without expending energy chasing away other birds. Plenty of food for all could be the reason - no need to get aggressive!
Blackcap - A new twig bird!
This male House Sparrow, which is nowhere near as frequent a sighting as I would like, was the first to be photographed on the twig.
Male House Sparrow - Making a comeback?
 As was this Robin.
That's a new species for the twig list taking the total over the past three weeks to 18 with eleven species photographed. The book is now open on the total for the year!

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