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That is New

Thursday, 6th May 2021

Bird activity continues apace and I have now placed my new additional seed feeder in what I hope will be a suitable place for the smaller birds.
The feeder does not have a tray underneath but only small ports and perches and where I’ve placed it, I’m hoping that the likes of the sparrows, the blue tits and other smaller birds will be able to take advantage of it without being gate-crashed by pigeons, jackdaws and other larger birds. Initially I placed it in a dwarf apple tree thinking that that would be suitable for the smaller birds, but unfortunately during the windy weather it fell out of the tree so wasn’t a lot of use. I’ve now placed it in a buddleia which has a couple of dead branches, which should’ve been pruned out but which I’ve left as the birds seem to like to use them as a landing stage. There is some ivy in the buddleia as well, so they should be able to hop across from the cobnut to the bush should they so choose. The food level does seem to be going down in the feeder although I can’t directly see it from most of my windows.
 
That is new

At the weekend I also put out a small feeder for mealworms and placed that in the cobnut close to the suet logs and the main seed feeder. A robin was the first to try it in just a matter of minutes, ‘That’s new, I’ll give it a go’. It took a couple of mealworms but then a starling found it and I can almost imagine it saying, ‘Guys over here, that’s new’ and before I knew it, there was a big crowd of starlings and they had emptied the half full feeder inside 15 minutes. The feeder was a free gift at my local garden centre and came with about 50 grams or so of mealworms. A lot was dropped through a bush and they amused themselves for some time eating them up. I know they all have to eat but the reason for putting it out was again for the smaller birds and so for now I have brought it inside, while I think of somewhere more suitable to place it, not that I’m denying the starlings some meal worms, as I scatter some on the ground and in the seed feeder tray, but the smaller birds miss out.

Talking of the starlings, my picture this week is of a small group on my lawn pecking away at various grubs and I am sure they are pleased that there has been at least a small amount of rain. It’s still on the cold side particularly overnight and demand for food generally remains high. A suet log lasts less than a week and a square a similar time.

During the past week I’ve had a couple of new visitors or at least new as far as the past few months are concerned. A pair of goldfinches have visited a couple of times and have been pecking at old seed heads, another reason not to have an immaculately tidy garden! A pair of coal tits have also visited the suet logs so that is nice to see. My other usual visitors included blue tits, a great tit, the crow, a couple of jackdaws, a couple of collared doves, two or three blackbirds, sparrows, robins, dunnocks and of course the feral pigeons have been coming and going.

Written by Margaret Emerson

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