Wednesday 8 August 2012

Excitement in the garden!

OK so it is not quite a BB rarity, but it is certainly a garden rarity hereabouts. It is none other than the humble Coal Tit.

I noticed it this morning while thumbing through the daily paper, absorbing the feel good factor that the Olympics have brought to our lives, despite my cynical prejuces beforehand. I looked up and thought I caught a glimpse of this chap flying off. Not enough to tick it or celebrate though. I mentioned it to my Dad and then went to get on with some work. Shortly after he called me to say the bird was back, I rushed down and got this awful record shot through double glazing before it once again disappeared.

First record for the garden, rubbish shot of course, but the ID is clinched!

I then waited for it to return, which it did, and this time I mangaged to bang off some shots with no glass (other than the lens of course) between me and it.
Coal Tit.

Coal Tit.
It's a shame Elis was not here, these photos would be greatly superior if she had been. Perhaps when she is the bird will return and we'll have something rather better to post here.

Also-rans in the garden were this Blue Tit and several Starlings in a variety of plumages.

Blue Tit.

Starling moulting from summer to winter plumage, just the head feathers to go,
but look at those lovely, fresh, stunning greater coverts, wow!

Juvenile bird, presumably from a second or even third brood.
The local Starling flock has grown now to about 50 birds again, well short of its hey day when 150 or so would assemble on the rooftops and aerials. Of course the numbers swell at the end of the summer due to the young birds of the year. It'll be easier to see how the population fared when the winter is here and some of the inexperienced young get weeded out.
Trés amigos, or perhaps not, they seem to be squabbling. Beligerant younsters
moulting from thier juvenile to first winter plumage.
Nearby we have been watching this House Martin nest which now has two chicks poking their heads out almost continuously, they look pretty much ready to fly and will probably be gone in a day or two.
Well developed chicks.

"Mum! He's pulling my tail feathers again!"
"At last, she's back. That looks good, mmmmmm, half chewed mosquito,
my favourite, c'mon, c'mon, my turn... can't wait."

"Oi, Mum, are you deaf?!, Hello!, I'm here too you know!"

"Oi! Where are you going?"

"You gonna share that or what?"
"Hrmph! Some brother you turned out to be, I'm not speaking to you any more."

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