Saturday, 24 March 2012

Saturday Cinema - Blackcap

I was sitting here reading my RSS feeds when I noticed what I thought was a Coal Tit land on the bird table. I wasn't going to start the recorder but for some reason changed my mind. Am I pleased I did as the visitor turned out to be a male Blackcap. Last year I had a brief visit by a female to the Birdy Bistro but this is the first time I have seen a male.

The bird table used to be next to the Birdy Bistro which is fairly close to the kitchen window to give me a good view of the visiting birds. Last year I decided to move it to a spot nearer the bottom of the garden to see whether some of the shyer birds would use it. Now I have the camera in place I can see what a variety of visitors there are. As well as having a holder with suet balls I always have one on the bird table and it has proved to be very popular.

The Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) is a warbler. The male having the distinctive black cap and pale ring round the eyes. The female has a chestnut coloured cap and pale eye ring which makes it easy to distinguish the sexes.They can be found in deciduous woodlands with thick undergrowth and in mature gardens and parks. Most are Summer visitors though a small number overwinter having migrated here from northern mainland Europe. Nests are built in low shrub and contains 3 to 6 eggs.


  1. A few winters ago we had a visiting blackcap that frequently foraged on the Mahonia flowers in he garden - maybe for small insects in the flowers or perhaps even for the nectar.

  2. Good catch John.
    He might well be one of the early migrants.
    I was watching two today, singing away.

  3. Well done John :-) They are lovely little birds. They visit me in the Winter although I thought they had given me a miss this year but a couple of weeks ago I spotted a male, unfortunately the only photo I managed was of it disappearing!

    I just enjoyed Friday's flicks and seeing your bird table visitors, fascinating!

  4. Sweet little blackcap. We still have the winter birds even though spring has sprung. Should see the summer birds arriving soon.


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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