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top British garden birds


found this on BBC news site:

oh, I can only dream about taking pictures like this …

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Hi Fran... thank you for the link. :o)
I'm lucky to have a resident robin around my gardens.

27 Mar, 2014


double lucky, TT, you can take non-blurry pics! But maybe I'll get more birds in, once they get used to me, and I'll take better pics, with practice - or learn to use a "proper" camera - I shouldn't imagine that those pics were taken with a point-and-shoot camera!

27 Mar, 2014


Hi Fran ..
My camera is digital ... just point and press ... on the user-friendly setting ... Lol.

I just take lots ... keep clicking ...
because I can't see very easily whether I'm getting clear shots ...

... and then when I enlarge the pics. on the computer screen I can work out which photos have the best clarity.

27 Mar, 2014


lol TT it's good to know you're "normal", not "super-snapper"!!

I tried taking some pics of a bee that was buzzing around my Flowering Quince: I had to aim at where the buzz was coming from (when it stopped, so I knew it had settled!) and then load hte pics on to the PC, put them on 100% view (enoprmous!) and then search each pic, strip by strip, to see if I could find the bee in all that lot. Found two out of about ten.

27 Mar, 2014


Yes. It is a good idea to photograph where the sound is coming from ... buzzing, tweeting etc ! I always hear the robin first, and then can usually see where he is, and so I zoom in with the camera in the direction of the bird sounds.

I took a robin photo today, which I'll put on GoY later .. It's a picture where I was lucky to be in the right place at the right time ! Please keep on photographing the wild life ... you'll get some lucky pics :o)

27 Mar, 2014


lthanks, TT, I lookforward seeing Robin

lol think I'll just post the whole pics of my "bee hunt" and caption them, "there's a bee here somewhere" and offer a prize for whoever finds it!!

27 Mar, 2014


They'll find you Fran if you feed them, I put niger seed out last year in the hope of attracting Goldfinches none last year this year they're on the feeder twice a day you could set your watch by them, love watching the birds they're so busy at the moment collecting nesting material although the one I'm not too happy about is the magpie, just noticed yesterday they're making a nest at the top of our horse chestnut not good news for my songbirds but unfortunately that's just nature, one on your link we never see these days is the starling, remember when I was little they'd always be the first when my mum put out food.

27 Mar, 2014


There were more starlings around when houses had the old fashioned wooden fascia boards behind their guttering. Starlings would find holes in the rotted wood and build nests there.

But nowadays most homes have plastic soffits and plastic fascia boards. No places for the starlings to nest. I still get some starlings in my garden, but not so many since everyone had new their plastic guttering with new plastic accessories !

27 Mar, 2014


I have two seed feeders, one with Niger I bought up here, hte other wahtever seed mix I had in the old place; nuts (new) suet (old) and mealworms (new) - all I've seen at any of the feeders is a squrrel!

maybe they're not best placed - they were right at the botom of hte garden, half hidden in the overgrown greenery - thoght I'd read somewhere that they like open space all round so they can keep an eye out, and moved them further up the garden.. maybe i remembered wrongly, or maybe they're just not that hungry yet. hadn't noticed any birds flocking to neighbouring gardens, so it's not just me!

still, if i keep at it, in time they might discover it

27 Mar, 2014


Hello from me Fran. I love birds very much, but stopped feeding them.
1) I read that if you feed the birds regularly and suddenly you stop for any reason, you make more bad than good to them.
2) I could not bear the slaughter I saw in my garden every spring. Magpies, neighbours cats and other, turned paradise into hell. Not one nest survived. Mother nature at it's ugliest face. I still have many birds visiting my garden, but I do not invite them myself. The fewer the better.

27 Mar, 2014


Hi Kokkinotriantafyllo

I was in two minds about it: if the birds learn to depend on garden feeders, they might forget how to feed themselves - the young will always have known feeders and won't know anything else.

And once you start, you have to keep on, and get someone in to refill feeders whileyou're away.

And, as you say, predators feed there too.

My ideal would be to establish plants etc, to create an environment where they could feed themselves naturally - apart from anything else, it wouldn't need daily renewing! and the young would grow up having to forage naturally, even if the environment were helped along a bit

I might get to that stage, but I've only just moved here and it'll take some doing!

27 Mar, 2014


Fran ...
I've put the robin pic on as promised ...
The red colours of the robin blend in with the red colours of the robin so I hope you'll be able to see it.

28 Mar, 2014


Well I didn't know that was the reason for the starlings decline Tt thanks for the info :-)
My feeders are outside my kitchen window Fran around 3ft from a very dense cluster of shrub roses so any danger the birds can quickly nip in there which did save a little blue tit just the other week!! saw the sparrow hawk swoop past the window but luckily not fast enough, I've just hung an old teapot with food in the rose bush too for my robins I was fed up of putting food out for them and the magpies eating it all, within half an hour the great tits had discovered it and I'm now filling it on a daily basis all the little birds love it its safely away from danger and I can still watch them :-)

28 Mar, 2014


Hi Kathy ..
That's just my guess about one of the reasons for the decline of the starlings, but it seems to make sense.
Good idea about the old teapot.

Fran ... my comment above should read ..
The red colours of the robin blend in with the red colours of the LEAVES !
... sorry about that !

28 Mar, 2014


Thanks, TT, I'll whiz right over and have a look - did, gorgeous! and caught in mid-trill, too! lol and I read your first comment the way you meant it to have been, didn't notice that it didn't actually read that way till you corrected it, then went back to look ...

That's the dilemma fo rme, Simbad - bushes etc nearby to fly into for cover, but also might coer predators sneaking up! My feeders are maybe five feet from the kitchen window/back door, and there's no close cover. I could move the feeders back to near their original place, now that the sbrubs ther have been cut back, but how far is safe?

I hadn't thought of hanging teapots! I've got a few spare (why don't they sell teapot lids on their own??) and will see if I can find a sbrub strong eough to take the weight - all my shrubs hae been cut back, but the border strip of trees and shrubs just beyond the back fence had only been cut where they overhung the garden - I'd been thinking of teapot nests etc for robins, but not got any further than thinking.

28 Mar, 2014


I have one of those pole things to hang feeders on, there are bushes nearby. I feed during the cold months but not in the summer, I read somewhere thst the young don't learn to feed naturally if you feed all year.
this year the fat balls are extremly popular but only the soft one, I get them from the pet shop in the village , bought some from the market and the perishers ignored them for ages, too hard I think!

28 Mar, 2014


That's what I was afraid of, Pam, teaching them to be lazy and go for "waiter service" when it should be "self-service" - helping out during the lean times is one thing, but all yaer round ...

my fat balls may be a bit "crusty" by now - wonder if it'd make a difference if I broke them open and exposed the softer insides (assuming they've not set all the way through!)

The newsagent's down the road does pet and bird food, which is where I got the Nijer seeds and nuts. I'll try breaking the balls open, and if still no takers, try some new ones

Forgot to mention that I've seen two cats in the garden, neither of them mine - Gandalf comes up to the back door and whinges till it's given milk, but have only seen Bagheera skulking around at the far end. want to make sure the feer pole is out of their reach from surrounding shrubs!

28 Mar, 2014

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