2011 Week 7 (14 – 20th February)

Following on from the RSPB’s bird watch thing a couple of weeks ago, the diversity (and number) of birds in our garden has increased quite  a bit.  Last week I was happy to report that I saw a long-tailed tit for the first time in the garden, this morning I’m not sure which of us got the bigger fright when one landed a half metre from my head as I was planting the primroses.  Incidentally, gardening in this patch is quite difficult because there is always some bird creeping up on me and frightening me half to death.  And I always run if its the female blackbird because she is fiercely territorial and she’s charged at me at least once in the last week.

Anyway the long-tailed tits seem to have become regular visitors at the wild patch (all the small plants are British natives).  They’ve settled into the routine (show up, eat, eat some more, look cute, eat some more, leave) quite well.

Other sightings this weekend include a Greater Spotted Woodpecker (who is also a big fan of the coconut filled with fat and seed in the sense that he basically mines it before leaving), and  a Goldfinch (seriously, bought the niger seed feeder LAST YEAR and finally I’ve seen one use it – yes I’ve kept it full for the last year).

There was one bird that I noticed a few weeks ago, and that reappeared today.  Too small to be a Sparrow or a Dunnock, the wrong shaped tail to be a Wren, and a strange colour.  After some consultation with the great oracle ‘Google’, I conclude that it was a Goldcrest, probably a female Goldcrest which truly is a teensy-weensy bird being Britain’s smallest song bird.  At one point today I counted 16 birds of about 6 different species fighting over the 1 square meter of feeding space at the bottom of my garden.  Perhaps that’s just a sign I spend too much time staring out of the window.