Friday, 12 February 2016

Changes in the garden

I noticed some change in the guard in the garden today. Fine and a lot colder than of late there was a lot of activity in the feeding stations.

There are always a fair number of Blackbirds around the garden, but they tend to be protective of their individual feeding areas and repeated drive interlopers away.  Today there were five on the patio feeding area busily picking up the spillage from above with little interaction between them In total there were at least ten around. 

Like many people I've noticed the number of Greenfinches in the garden has been very low. This has been the situation for a couple of years, probably due to Trichomonosis a disease caused by the protozoan parasite Trichomonas gallinae. It has been recorded in a number of garden bird species and is widely acknowledged to be the causal factor in the rapid decline of the British Greenfinch population that was first noted in late summer 2006 

Today there was small influx of around six birds, all looking very fit and healthy. Sick birds are normally very fluffed up and slow moving unlike the sleek bird above, that does looked startled at having to share his feeder with a chaffinch.  

Down in the Bay the sea was quite calm, but the tides high. These are good conditions to watch Rock Pipits that move into the Bay when the areas below the beach are covered.

Above I noticed two Kestrels cruising along the top of the cliffs. Their numbers do seem a bit down as other predators have increased in the county.

I'm not quite sure what this one is doing, but it seems to be scanning the area, either for prey or for any danger around.

Our magnificent car park is now perfect habitat for pipits and wagtails, that all seem to enjoy rough ground with puddles in it.

Altogether there were three Rock Pipits and one Pied wagtail making use the shambles that out council taxes financed

Coming back for a trip to Folkestone I stopped to scan a field with around 40 Common Gulls. There were a few Black-headed Gulls with them, (One above).

Towards the back of the field I noticed an adult Mediterranean Gull, still in complete winter plumage.

When it flew it had a ring on its right leg, but it was to far to be able to read any information.

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