Sunday, 7 March 2010

One Triumph and One Failure

From time to time the Blackbirds have attempted to collect seed from the feeders but  they had found it too difficult balancing on the ring perches. A short wile ago I attached a 'saucer' to the bottom of the feeder to catch some of the seed scattered by the Starlings. One female Blackbird found it made just the ledge she needed to join the smaller birds which she did without bothering the other birds already feeding.

Female Blackbird, House Sparrow, female Chaffinch:
3 Birds

On our way back from walkies yesterday I stood for a while under a tree watching the courtship attempts by a male Chaffinch. He was singing and bowing from side to side. Every so often he would fly to a branch a bit closer to the female. This went on for about a minute as he gradually closed the gap. She was listening and watching his every move. Eventually he landed on a twig a few inches away from his intended. I could just imagine the look of frustration and disappointment on his face as she promptly flew away just as he was about to hop on to her branch. Oh well. If at first you don't succeed ..........


  1. Hi John... a lovely shot of the three on the seedfeeder - poor Mr Chaffinch.... I've no doubt he'll be back... great to see the birds continuing to check out the nest boxes... always exciting to see waht will return and if there will be any new visitors... I guess it won't be long before the swallows return... last year the first sightings here were at the end of March! Miranda

  2. Attaching that saucer is a good idea; I will have to give that a try on one of my feeders that spills a lot of seed. Great shot of the trio feeding!

  3. Thank you Miranda, I'm sure Mr, Chaffinch will keep trying. No nest box activity for two days now. I'm not worried though as the same gaps happened last year.
    I look forward to watching the Swallows swooping over the cricket field in the Summer.

  4. Thank you Wilma. I saw the idea on another blog quite some time ago. This 'saucer' is specially made for the job and screws in the hole in the bottom of the feeder. Plenty still misses when the Starlings throw the seed about but it keeps some and the smaller birds like to sit on the rim to eat.

  5. Hi John, Funny you should talk about the courtship of the male Chaffinch, I have been noticing the House Sparrows are squabbling a lot this past week and today, one male Sparrow was trying to attract a female. Yesterday, three Robins appeared all at once in my garden, two of them squared up to each other, heads up, tails up, swaying from side to side and singing. As I was noticing all this, I thought today when seeing the Chaffinches hopping around in my garden, picking up food, I have never seen the courtship of the Chaffinches and I wondered what the males did to try and attract a female, reading your post today has enlightened me, thankyou.

  6. Poor old Mr. Chaffinch. Sounds like Saturday nights out from my younger days lol

    Those Blue Tits look almost ready to move in John, from that previous video.

  7. Hello Linda. The House Sparrows here have been getting much noisier. A couple of times one has picked up a small discarded feather but so far only taken it to the seed feeder and then dropped the feather to carry on eating.
    I was fascinated watching the Chaffinches. The male would sit for a while on each branch and give a short song before moving closer. I wish I had had the camcorder with me.

  8. Hello Keith. I'm sure Mr. Chaffinch won't give up easily. No sign of any activity in the nestbox these past two days but it is still early yet, especially with -4C early morning temperatures.


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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