Sunday, February 08, 2009

A new guest in the garden

The snow's still on the ground and more is forecast this evening so it's no surprise the numbers of birds in the garden is holding steady, with the occasional new garden record (ten Reed Buntings for example). It is always a delight however when we get an entirely new species in the garden - yesterday (Saturday) we were visited by our first Redwing seen here rummaging under one of the feeders:

On Sunday it was two Redwings, seen here again on the side border under the whole sunflower seed feeder:

The other unusual thing about the garden this weekend is the amount of birds getting ready to breed. We've seen both Collared Dove and House Sparrow with nesting materials. A pair of Robins did a display, which I've never seen before:

Before alighting in the hedge together:

I guess they must be reacting to the increasing hours of light, as it remains freezing cold with most of the ground covered in snow, except the areas we're keeping clear to feed them.

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Friday, February 06, 2009

cold snap - extended version

What started out as fun is now getting tedious it being Friday now and we've been snowed in for two days on the trot:

As you can see from this picture we're getting more birds than ever on an hourly and daily basis:

One benefit of the recent weather has been the sunsets, here's a couple of the more colourful and intense pictures (no filters, no post-processing, just real sky colours):

I love the burned sky colour of this one - click for a better view:

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Monday, February 02, 2009

cold snap

(Monday) We have some strange trees in the garden today. First a blurry 'Blackbird Tree':

A new variation on an apple tree, that is the 'Collared Dove' tree:

And finally a 'House Sparrow tree':

Spot the Song Thrush. We've also recorded record numbers of some species - four Robins at one point with three of them together in the same bush, over twenty Blackbirds, eighteen Collared Doves, five Reed Buntings, as well as approximately fifty each of Goldfinch, House Sparrow and Starling. We've also had twelve Wood Pigeons, twelve Chaffinches and five Greenfinch though this winter we've not seen either Siskin (2007-2008) or Brambling (2006-2007) in the garden. The local larder is in full-swing too, I'm having to refill the feeders twice a day at the moment to help them all through this cold snap, it's costing a fortune!

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