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Bird and wildlife watching

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date

AnninGlos

AnninGlos Report 21 Aug 2019 14:44

Wow Jane Yes that must have been quite a sight to see, how lovely. :-)

Jane

Jane Report 20 Aug 2019 18:53

Wonderful sight yesterday . 6 Red Kites flying so low over a counrty road I was driving along, They could not have been more than 30ft above me. If I had not had a car behind me I would have pulled over and got a video of them. It was quite something to see :-D

SuffolkVera

SuffolkVera Report 18 Aug 2019 17:36

You are probably right Jane. A squirrel is the only likely explanation but I am blowed if I can see how it manages to totally empty the feeder of seeds without dislodging or unscrewing it in any way at all.

Weird things regularly happen to us. We had a dustpan and brush hanging up in the garage and a few months ago the brush went walkabout. OH and I have both separately turned that garage upside down and we are in and out all the time because we use half of it as a shed, so all our gardening stuff and all OH’s tools are in there. Yesterday OH went in and on a shelf opposite the door and in full view was the brush, on top of stuff we have used regularly :-S. How strange is that?

Jane

Jane Report 17 Aug 2019 17:05

I reckon it is quite likely to be a Squirrel Vera even though you haven't spotted one. We had the same problem with a feeder I had down the garden and like you all the seeds were on the ground.The same did happen with the Niger Seed feeder.I can't think what else it could be if not a Squirrel. How strange though. Spooky :-D

I still haven't put the window feeder back up on my lounge window so we have no little visitors right close to the house now. I do miss them but not the mess left by the Woodpigeons as they would pick up all the dropped food and poop all over the place. OH was getting so fed up having to hose down the patio everyday.Even getting to the washing line was like walking through a minefield of poo :-S

SuffolkVera

SuffolkVera Report 17 Aug 2019 16:40

About a month ago I wrote about the problems I was having with seed feeders. Something was managing to tip ALL the seeds out on to the ground without moving the feeder. I stopped putting out seeds. There have been no problems with the feeders with fat balls, peanuts or Niger seeds.

Today I decided to try putting seeds out again, just half filling the container. Same thing. It looks as though I have hung an empty feeder up. Nothing is dislodged, it’s not moved on the bough, it’s all tightly screwed together but it is completely empty and the seeds are on the ground. I can’t see how a squirrel or a cat could throw every single seed out without moving the feeder. Also in the 6 years we have lived here I have not seen a single squirrel and I really don’t think a cat could do it.

HELP. Have we got a mischievous birdie ghost?

Jane

Jane Report 10 Aug 2019 20:50

Haven't seen too many small birds here these last couple of days. They will have been like your Blackbird Pippyn and struggled to get anywhere. Seagulls though seem to be a different matter. Something must be going on in the fields as we are about as far from the sea as you can get.. Just love the sound of a Gull though.It brings back childhood memories :-D

Magpye

Magpye Report 9 Aug 2019 18:07

Goodness, it's really windy here now, with heavy showers! We have a loan blackbird on our fence who seems unable to fly as everytime it tries take off it just gets blown around and it just can't get anywhere at all! Poor thing!!!!!

Jane

Jane Report 8 Aug 2019 19:32

My friend got a pic this morning of a Cormorant sitting on th fence down the lane. Why it was there is a mystery.She sent me the pic so when I get the chance I will send it on to your blog Ann.

Looks like some of us could be in for some really nasty weather . I just spoke to my friend who lives in Saltash in Cornwall and she said the rain is coming down really heavy there now.

Magpye

Magpye Report 5 Aug 2019 12:39

AnnG. It is lovely seeing birds when they're a pair, siblings or mates, they always seem so fond of each other! Very windy here this morning, sunny but threatening!! We're planning a canal walk this afternoon as it's not too hot and hopefully won't rain. The thing we have to remember is not to go too far and forget that we have to come back!!!! Years ago that wasn't an issue but these days it is!! Our son told us that next summer he and his wife are planning a long boat holiday and that hopefully we can join them for a weekend! Something to look forward to provided our health stays reasonably good!
Lots of cabbage whites here this morning, and swallows very busy with their second brood that are now flying! It's like watching little fighter planes shooting around! It's good that they are fairly early as it gives them plenty of time to get strong enough to leave for ?? in September. Later broods tend not to make it which is sad!

AnninGlos

AnninGlos Report 5 Aug 2019 11:31

A few butterflies around at the moment although they are clinging to the Buddleia for their lives as it is windy. A couple of red admirals and a painted lady.

Pippyn talking of pigeons, the other day I was sitting on the patio down the end of our garden and two baby collard doves landed on the fence next to me, they just sat and looked at me, so sweet.

Magpye

Magpye Report 4 Aug 2019 10:27

Meant to say that we have a pair of pigeons who sit on our fence and bill and coo at each other which is really entertaining! Perhaps that is why I'm so forgiving over the bird bath?!!! I must go!!!!

Magpye

Magpye Report 4 Aug 2019 10:14

Lots of activity here first thing this morning! We now have a couple of willow warblers who seem to have appeared from nowhere! They are such tiny birds that they could have gone unnoticed, but they were certainly around today. We have a very concise bird book that we keep on the kitchen table in order to help define new arrivals! Mind you we don't always agree!!! I have the same problem with the bird bath!! It need filling every day and cleaning regularly, pigeons being the main offenders!! It is a bit of a pain but poor things need water too and can't help what they are or the mess they make!
We're being taken out to lunch by our son and his wife, neatly killing two birthdays with one outing!! Must say I'm looking forward to it so best get a move on!!

SuffolkVera

SuffolkVera Report 3 Aug 2019 21:40

I haven't seen the flying ants this year but it does seem to be a good year for butterflies. We have had a few painted ladies in the garden including one today which was the largest I have ever seen.

This afternoon I cleaned the bird bath yet again. I really dislike that job because it seems a real waste of effort. The damn pigeons think it is their own personal latrine and seem to be queueing up to use it as soon as I have cleaned it :-|

AnninGlos

AnninGlos Report 3 Aug 2019 20:32

Flying ants were on the move here yesterday horrid things.

We had a lot of butterflies yesterday but mainly red admirals, cabbage whites, also a different white I thought might have been a wood white, tortoiseshell and a few that zoomed over my head that I couldn’t see against the sun. Not seen any painted ladies though.or maybe I have because they are so close to tortoiseshell. I will have to pay more attention.

Our canal is lovely, we have walked at different times the full length all but a short stretch that is in the town part of Gloucester. We tend to do short walks of less than four miles these days but it is a favourite stretch which takes us from Saul round Frampton on Severn a very pleasant walk. However we are friends of The Willow Trust which has two double width canal boats and is a charity that takes disabled and other vulnerable people on trips down the canal. We are mainly friends for fund raising support. At least once a year the friends have an opportunity to have a trip on one of the boats. We love that it is such a peaceful trip not very long, an hour altogether with tea or coffee and biscuits.

Jane

Jane Report 3 Aug 2019 17:09

Hi Island :-) I am so jealous of those of you living near a canal or river. We are a good few miles from our nearest Canal which is Market Harborough. I am in 'countryside ' though , which is sadly all being destroyed with major works in preparation for thousands of houses .The noise and dust is horrendous .What has happened to all the Badgers Setts opposite us I have no idea .
Butterflies ...we have lots of now which is lovely but I just dont know the difference (other than the Cabbage Whites). I just wish the Butterflies would not suddenly fly through our open patio doors into the house. I spend so long trying to get them out safely without damaging their wings. I need a Butterfly net :-D

I think flying Ants might have been and gone.It has been the right time for them .Plenty of other normal ants though :-S
How sweet of your dog and the pony having a little nose rub Island :-D

Island

Island Report 3 Aug 2019 09:46

I've just been reading about the 'ten year explosion' of painted ladies - BBC news. I haven't seen any yet but we do have red admirals and peacock butterflies - and too many whites of course.

I seem to have missed the flying ants this year or are they late due to weather conditions?

Island

Island Report 2 Aug 2019 09:50

Sadly, our narrowboating days are over but there is always something else to do - there's a garden and veg beds to tend for starters, we couldn't leave that to the mercy of freak temperatures.

Vera, your river, water meadows and cattle sounds idyllic. There's often some ponies in a field next to our canal. There's also a billy goat, whose presence can be detected long before he comes into view :-0.
I had a magical moment a few years ago shortly after adopting our dog. We were walking along the towpath and stopped to greet the pony in 'billy goat field'. My little dog looked up as the pony put its head down over the fence and they gently touched noses. Even if I'd had my camera with me, the moment was so brief but enchanting.


Sorry, I digress. Back later with some birdie talk.

SuffolkVera

SuffolkVera Report 1 Aug 2019 19:58

Not many birds around today. I think there is plenty of food around for them at the moment so they don’t need to come and eat at the feeders. The mealworms have disappeared so something has been in. I hope it’s the two robins. I usually hear the starlings when they are after the mealworms.

I don’t think my little brown butterflies were Small Skippers Ann. The wings didn’t look right for Skippers. They were probably the Meadow Brown which are quite common.

We are getting a lot of peacock butterflies. They seem to be attracted to a white buddleia that we have in a half barrel.

EDIT It must be nice living by the canal. No canals round here but we are only a few minutes walk from the river and some lovely water meadows. In the summer there are usually highland cattle being grazed on the meadows. I haven’t seen them this year but they move them around so they might be down the other end of town.

Magpye

Magpye Report 1 Aug 2019 12:08

The canal walk is lovely all year round. At the moment (holiday time) there are a lot of narrow boats as well as the ones that are permanent dwellings! These come and go on a regular basis so you get to know people when you're on your walk. OH and I often thought about getting a boat, but never did it and are now too old!! Perhaps just as well!! Our daughter and son in law have a motor launch on the Thames which we get an invite to now and again, which is lovely!
The woodpecker family has visited this morning and the swallows were out and about earlier, but have disappeared now! No doubt they'll be back tonight tucked up inside our old garage come storehouse!

Island

Island Report 1 Aug 2019 10:27

Another living near a canal here :-D Five minute walk to the locks, it's great for walking the dog and very popular with locals and boaters alike - very picturesque too with not many houses overlooking. A lovely country walk all year round and fabulous in the autumn when the leaves colour up.

At our previous location there were few birds to be seen - mainly feral pigeons (tree rats) so we always travelled to good (quiet) birding spots. Now, we don't even have to set foot through the door to see all sorts of 'dickie birds'. Long tail, great, blue tits, sparrows, goldfinch, nuthatch, robins. Also blackbirds, collared doves (don't they sound 'whingey'!) thrushes, starlings, jackdaw. A real treat is buzzards flying overhead, mewing. We also have swifts screaming up the street.
Bird heaven for us :-D
This year we had a pair of robins nesting, we're pretty sure the eggs hatched judging by the trips back and forth but sadly, we think ratty took them :-(

The blackbird nesting successfully fledged two young. Always a pleasure to see them exploring the garden - good dog takes no notice of them, he's more of a ratty man :-D