Monday, 20 December 2010

Monday 20th.December 2010

Only managed a short time out today , either side of midday , with the temperature still around -4C , and feeling even colder than that . Again I visited the berry laden trees that had produced so little yesterday , and almost immediately found a Fieldfare , gorging on the berries of a Rowan on the edge of the pavement . By the time I pulled over and got the camera out , it had disappeared , but I thought it was the bird I could see sitting on the ridge of a nearby roof . But with binoculars , I could see that is wasn't the Fieldfare , but it's relation , a Mistle Thrush . I slowly drove up the road towards the bridleway , only to find another Mistle Thrush , posing in the milky sunshine . All the other berried trees that I looked at , produced just Starlings , Blackbirds and Woodpigeons , until I reached a heavily laden Holly , just inside the front garden of a house . I had looked at the tree yesterday , and was surprised at the time that it only had a Blackbird and a Woodpigeon feeding on it , when the berries looked well ripe , and after Rowan , seem to be very popular with the Thrushes . I saw a couple of birds fly out as I approached , so pulled over on the other side of the road and waited . There was a lot of feeding movement on the house side of the tree , with berries constantly falling onto the snow covered front garden . Birds came and went with regularity , but always from the other side . Eventually , the odd Redwing landed on my side of the tree , usually momentarily, before diving into the middle to start feeding . If the light was better early in the morning , before traffic and people started moving about , they just might be less nervous , and not look as if they were just about to depart . One particular bird landed on the side of the tree , and had to stretch for it's preferred berry , which needed some wing flapping to compensate , giving another shot of the 'red wing' . With all the water frozen , it was interesting to watch this particular bird , washing down the berries that it had consumed , with snow , before getting rid of the waste matter , onto the houseowner's car , which was parked directly underneath the Holly , and rapidly changing colour . I have also watched Chaffinches in the garden doing the same , that is eating snow , not redecorating my car .

The only other interest was a couple of passes by a male Sparrowhawk , probably eying up the Redwings , but both times driven off by the local Corvids .

5 comments:

Warren Baker said...

Nice photo's Greenie :-)

I have also watched the birds eating the snow, this cant be good, as it takes alot of energy to melt it once eaten.

At least, thats what old 'whats his name' says on the survival programmes :-)

Phil said...

Fantastic Redwing oics Greenie, I'm suitably jealous!

Phil said...

Sorry Greenie. That should read pics not oics. Oics are those that go round New Hythe chucking beer cans in the undergrowth!

Dean said...

I agree, great set of pics Greenie.

ShySongbird said...

So sorry not to have commented on your last few posts Greenie, I have fallen behind with blogging altogether due to various boring reasons. However it has been a pleasure to catch up and you have had some lovely photos to show us. The last one of the Water Rail on an earlier post was great and it has been so nice to see the Redwings and the Mistle Thrush on this post.
Great that you managed to get photos of the Treecreeper too, I find them very difficult to capture.

We have had very heavy snow here and Sunday night it was -16C!!