During the winter months, at least 12%* of Britain and Ireland’s Blackbirds are immigrants from elsewhere in Europe.
Although the Blackbird can be seen in woodland, it is now commonly seen in the urban garden and has quite happily adjusted to feed on bird tables.
Prolonged dry spells pose a significant threat to Blackbird’s as this unfortunately, means their access to earthworms is limited.
Blackbirds arrive in the UK in their thousands in the autumn, but we’re unlikely to even notice these immigrants as they look the same as our very own resident Blackbird.
The efforts of BTO bird ringers have revealed that these immigrants arrive from Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands and Germany; however, some will not stay here for the entire winter and will fly further south to overwinter in Portugal and France.
Blackbirds can be tempted into our gardens with fruit, berries and softer seed mixes (ones generally without husks) like Husk free Advance, Golden Chorus, Songster food and suet pellets, but will also come freely to a ground station for mealworms and raisins. In spring, they have been known to take tadpoles from a shallow pond.
Males and females – which is which? It’s easy to tell the difference; you should be able to spot a brown female from a black plumaged male.
If you live on a well-lit street, the blackbird; is in a small minority of birds that will happily sing during the night. Blackbirds have large eyes in comparison to the size of their body and research has revealed they are amongst the first birds to visit a garden on a dark winter morning, this means that they can also visit later in the afternoon, as light levels fall.
The Blackbird is one of ours and, indeed, Britain’s best- loved garden birds. Thankfully with a large range of food available, Blackbirds can happily live in close proximity to each other and in our urban settings so may they continue to fully enjoy their RSPB green status.
*Source – BTO website