Sunday, 26 January 2014
Friday, 24 January 2014
Sunday, 19 January 2014
Can you spot the Song Thrush on the large Horse Chestnut?
Saturday, 18 January 2014
I tend to ignore the Canada Geese in my outings to the park and I realised I didn't have any close-ups I was happy with so I got down to my knees this afternoon, at eye level by the pond, and had a session with this intrigued individual.
Thursday, 16 January 2014
I had never seen any Ash seed predators, until today I spied a charm of Goldfinches atop a weeping ash tree in the park. The Goldfinches were sitting on bunches of keys chomping away at them. I was so surprised I checked sure they were eating the seeds and not the buds or just loitering on the tree. But, yes, they were manipulating the seeds with their bill (bottom photo). I could only find a photo of goldfinches feeding on ash keys (here). The coat of the ash seeds seems quite tough and leathery so that shows how versatile goldfinch bills are, not only extracting tiny seeds like teasel, birch or alder from their pods, but also dealing with these.
I watched another flock in a different Ash tree today. I photographed an individual using its foot to hold the whole seed while it pecked it with its bill. Photos follow.
Wednesday, 15 January 2014
Monday, 13 January 2014
I photographed two cooing pigeons today, as the Stock Doves in my local park are also very vocal, although much more coy than the collared dove, I couldn't manage a nice shot, but like how the iridescent patch in the neck spreads out, making feather stripes which are not very visible on the resting bird.
The song of the Stock dove is also cooing, but lower, bisylabic and full of effort, and lacks the purring quality of the domestic pigeon. Given how shy and unobtrusive these doves are, learning to identify their call is the best way to spot them.
Here is a nice recording from Volker Arnold in Germany: