Tuesday 19 January 2010

The pecking order

The birds come into the garden by the bucket full. With or without the snow there is always a large number both at the feeders and on the ground.

With the prolonged snow, birds that wouldn't normally share

have had to learn a bit of give and take

                            and brush up on their aerodynamic skills                                

But some birds just aren't prepared to call a truce. This blackcap had no doubt where he fitted into the pecking order -

right at the top. He seemed unaware of his size -  small, and quickly gained the reputation of playground bully with a particular aversion to blue tits

The fieldfare had no (bird)table manners and used all his energy to chase off the thrushes and blackbirds hardly leaving time for lunch      

And this was lunch! Niels would watch (Niels is a husband and not a bird, though he would say he was henpecked!) as his favourite apples and cheese went out into the garden each day. Some days I'm sure I caught him looking longingly at the bird table!

I've never thought of myself as especially a bird person and I don't have masses of bird knowledge, but they are delightful to watch and it somehow feels a privilege they come into the garden to feed. These long tailed tits are so flighty and sociable together, they could teach the blackcap and fieldfare  a bit of social etiquette!


S. Etole said...

they certainly can be amusing at times ...enjoyed your photos

Unknown said...

Hello Ann, we like your new header and the birds. Glad to see the bird feeder branch is still holding up :o) lots of love Em x

annie hoff said...

hello em!
The bird feeder is brilliant! I've just counted 50 or more chaffinches hopping about catching crumbs underneath it!
Not sure about the header (think it looks like a pub sign!) but it will do for the time being x

Lucille said...

What a wonderful collection of birds. Do you find they prefer one feeder to another? We have one squirrel proof feeder that they hardly touch. It has a cage round it but there's plenty of room to hop in.

annie hoff said...

The birds go for all the feeders, but the sunflower hearts go first! I watched a pine marten one evening climb up over the feeders. He was able to demolish a plastic container full of niger seed - I found the container the next morning lying on the ground with a chunk taken out of it!

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