Thursday, 6 August 2009

A Tale of a Tail-less Bird and others

For three days now there has been what appears to me a juvenile Blackbird with no tail feathers. It is quite young and a bit of the yellow can still be made out at the base of its beak. There has been no adult with it. Fortunately it is quite capable of feeding itself and spends ages hopping round the lawn finding seeds and helping itself from the ground feeder.

Tail-less Juvenile Blackbird



Tail-less Juvenile Blackbird

How it came to have no tail feathers remains a mystery. A close encounter with a local raptor? A close encounter with a cat? A problem when developing its juvenile feathers? It is anybody's guess. It can fly just fine so it must have adjusted to the fact.

I often see the occasional large sea bird flying over. Yesterday was quite a sight to watch. There were several waves of large birds with over thirty being seen at any one time as they slowly circled and every now and then dived a short distance as though plucking an insect out of the air. I assume they were one of the gull family but haven't been able to match what I saw with any pictures I could find on the net. Any help identifying them would be appreciated. As usual all I managed were virtually silhouettes. Although it appears dark they were in fact white with a black head so I suppose it could be a black headed gull.

Seagull

A couple of videos of youngsters to finish with. First a couple of young Sparrows being fed by a parent. As the youngsters kept crowding and nearly squashing the parent it gave up and flew off for a breather.



Finally a juvenile Blue Tit at the nut feeder. As usual the birds always seem to choose the back of the feeder but it does pop its head round a few times. It spent ages trying, and in the end succeeding, to get one particular piece of peanut to take away.



More rain today. It is so humid here it fair takes your breath away.

13 comments:

  1. Hi John

    Great shots

    I know it's not a blokey thing but
    I have nominated you for an award as a favourite blog of mine but don't expect you to continue with the circulated conditions.

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  2. What an odd and very unusual sight the little Blackbird is John but thank goodness it doesn't seem to deter it from moving around freely. I'm no help with the gull ID I'm afraid although the obvious choice from your description does seem to be a Black Headed, great photo though. I enjoyed the videos, the little Blue Tit looks very determined and is clearly learning to fend for itself very well. I do sympathise with you over the humidity, I find it very difficult to cope with, it does quite literally take my breath away. So far today we have had NO RAIN!! However it does not look as bright and sunny as we were promised!

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  3. Hi again John, in answer to your (amusing) reply from yesterday. I think I probably did a few too many rain dances during the brief heatwave a few weeks ago! and would you believe that within minutes of my earlier comment we have had a steady downpour and rumblings of thunder, absolutely not what we were promised for today, that has put an end to our proposed trip out this pm!

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  4. That little Blackbird does look a sorry sight without his tail. Seems to be coping though.

    Great videos again; and I think your Gulls are Black-headed. Had quite a few overhead here on a daily basis recently, doing just as you describe.

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  5. I saw a tail-less blackbird like that last week.

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  6. Lovely video of the young Blue Tit John.

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  7. Hi Prof. A B Y. I really don't know what to say, apart from thank you for the very kind thought.

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  8. Hi Jan. I seem to accumulate strange looking Blackbirds. Young birds soon learn to fend for themselves don't they and the Blue Tit has become a regular. Humidity now back to normal but I am impatiently waiting for the grass to dry out enough to get it cut before the green bin is emptied on Monday.

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  9. Hi Keith. Yes, the young Blackbird visits every day and seems to be getting on just fine.

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  10. Hi G.L.W. It's not just me that attracts strange looking birds then. :)

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  11. Thank you Paul. There is something endearing about young creatures as they find their way around the big bad world.

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  12. Hi John, I too live in Lincolnshire but has been the sight of a Tail-less adult Blackbird which has been feeding at my bird table over the past weeks that has brought me to your site. It is a lovely well kept bird with very dark plumage, it also has a light brown companion who is also tail-less. I'll try and get some photos.
    David

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  13. The Tail-less Blackbird has made another appearance in my garden this May, this time without it's tail-less partner. It is looking very healthy and puts up a strong challenge for food umongst the crazy Starlings. It's appearance at this time of year leads me to hope that perhaps it has a family of it own to look after.
    David

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Thank you for visiting. Hope you enjoyed the pictures. Any comment, or correction to any information or identification I get wrong, is most welcome. John

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