Friday, October 15, 2010

My Garden Birds | Update

I have not been spending much time consciously watching the birds in my garden recently, but the casual sitings from the window (usually in front of the kitchen sink) have been getting very interesting.

We have experienced the usual late summer lull of August and September when most of the birds seem to disappear but now as autumn kicks in, the garden takes on a whole new perspective.

The regular Woodpigeons and Collared Doves are here of course, they never really go away, living as they do in the large conifer tree about 2 metres away from our boundary fence. The Crows I wrote about earlier in the year are still around as are a few Magpies, but now I am beginning to see the Robins, Great Tits, Blue Tits, and Coal Tits.

The Coal Tits have been seen in the garden previously, but sightings were always few and far between. Now it seems that almost every day I am getting at least a glimpse of them as they visit the feeder in the garden. It is difficult to get any idea of how many there might be but I have seen two individuals present at the same time.

They are dainty little birds, being one of the smallest members of the tit family though less colourful than the Blue and Great tits. The male and female Coal tits both have the distinctive white markings on the black head and double white wing bars.

I have tried to get a photo of them but so far without success. They are quick and agile, darting to the feeder, extracting the seed they fancy then flying off to the nearby Holly bush. I did however manage to capture a short video the other day.

The House Sparrows are still here in abundance, I watched a group of them yesterday enjoying a bit of sunshine and dust bathing in a patch of dry sand. Starlings however are few in number at the moment despite the fact that we were overrun with brood after brood of youngsters earlier in the year. I am sure many of them will return as autumn progresses and the natural food sources become more scarce.


  1. Just curious what kind of bird food you are using?
    Carla @ Kaytee

  2. Howdee..
    love the little Coal tits..We have tons of house sparrows here at my parents house in CT.You want a few more?
    Happy Birding.

  3. Carla, at the moment we use just a mixed wild bird food in the feeder suitable for tits and finches. It contains wheat, maize, sunflower seeds and other small seeds. We also have fat balls and fat blocks containing fruits and mealworms, we put out larger seeds for the Woodies and the Doves. Depending on the time of year and weather conditions we put out mealworms for Robins, Wrens, Blackbirds etc.
    I am going to be experimenting with various types of feeders soon and will publish an account of what I am doing and the results on here.

  4. Hi Dawn,
    We have more House Sparrows here this year than I can ever remember. They are going round in gangs, hanging out in trees, drinking and making lots of noise.

  5. You seem to have quite a variety of birds for a small garden. I live in a flat, so am lucky to see a Starling or two at my feeders!