Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009 | Author:

Over the last two or three weeks I have noticed fairly large (20-50) close-knit flocks of small ‘finch-like’ birds moving from place to place rapidly on the reserve. Last weekend I was able to get a reasonable view of them. At least some of them (mabe all) are redpolls. Streaky body, black bib and always on the move. Some seem to keep the red forehead at this time of year too- but I wasn’t close enough to tell. My guide book says that some winters we get ‘invasions’ of faily large numbers of redpols.

Last weekend was the first time I have seen the cock pheasant under the feeder near the hide. Maybe it is because some of the cover has died back or maybe it is desperation with all the snow hanging around. Other birds that seem to be using ‘local facilities’ include blue tits taking refuge in holes in the mortar in the house nearest the reserve gate. I have seen collared doves seemingly trying (and failing) to land in the middle of the mere to get a drink whilst the snow has been around. I have seen as many as 12 collared doves at a time recently clustering on the bird feeder near to the hide. I’m sure they help to empty it quickly.

Earlier in the week I saw three male bullfinches together on the feeder- it was nice to see variations in the redness/pinkness between the individuals- maybe age related?

I’m hoping to have regular visits to the hide over the Christmas break.

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