Saturday, 11 June 2011

It's A Family Affair

In the gloom that passed for daylight today the garden was heaving with action, as young birds were beginning to establish themselves in the avian community.

Only four days ago I watched a family of Blue-tits just outside the window. Then the young lined up on a branch while the adults foraged for food, if flying to a feeder can be called foraging, and flew back to the hungry youngsters, deeding them in turn.

The same went for the Great Tit family. This is no longer the case, they kids are now capable of feeding themselves and at times up to four could be seem feeding on the same sunflower dispenser at a time.

Even the Great-spotted Woodpeckers are coming in groups now, and occasionally more than one feeds on one peanut feeder for a while before squabbles break out.

I hadn't noticed that one of the male Great Tits has lost it's tail, until this afternoon. I presume that it either had a close call with a Sparrowhawk, or one of the marauding moggies that I seem to find difficulty in persuading that our garden isn't their playground.

When I look across the road I was slightly surprised to see a Kestrel sitting on the roof of Foxley.

Not that Kestrels are uncommon round here, but around the gardens Sparrowhawks are far more likely to be encountered. It took the opportunity for a preen, before resuming a relaxed, but probably alert pose.

This one stayed sitting up there for quite a while, I suppose that it is a good view point and the way it suddenly became alert and then stretched it's neck, it may well have been using the position to scan the field behind the house.

When it did dive off in a purposeful manner I was unable to see whether it pounced on prey below or not as it was quickly lost to view behind tree and hedges.

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