Saturday, 13 December 2008

Copper Heads in the Rain, 13th December 2008

I have a book in my library at home that I rarely look at called 'All the Birds of the Air - The Names, Lore and Literature of British Birds' by Francesca Greenoak and it gives local names for all British species. Out of interest I decided to look up Tree Sparrow and the first name it gave comes from Cheshire and is Copper Head, which I think is quite apt. Others are Red-headed Sparrow (Yorkshire), Rock Sparrow (Cheshire) and Tree Finch.

Well, the Copper Head's were still around in force this morning at Moss House Farm and so was the rain. The weather men got everything right for today except the timing. They said the wind would drop and it did; they also said the rain would clear eastwards after 0900 and it didn't! Back to the Copper Heads; I counted 162 this morning, although they were difficult to count because they were sticking close to the hedge. There were a few Chaffinch, Reed Bunting and Corn Bunting amongst them.

As it was raining the whole time that I was there my walk round was shortened, although I still had a number of birds. Pink-feet were very much in evidence this morning and I counted 3,198 moving between feeding sites. A few days ago I talked about all the Woodpigeons disappearing and perhaps moving to Ireland; well I was a little premature in my assumption/theory as today I had 519 flying from the L wood to feed on some adjacent arable land to the west.

A few more Thrushes were around this morning and I had 34 Fieldfares, 22 Redwings and 4 Song Thrushes. Some of the Fieldfares were in with a group of Starlings at the feeding station. There were a number of Finches away from the feeding station including 40 Chaffinch, 30 Goldfinch and 40 Linnets that were feeding along the hedge, ditch and margin between Curlew Farm and Curlew Wood.

My random picture for today is of two Black and White Warblers in teh hand taken in Canada. These flying 'humbugs' are absolutely brilliant and behave rather like black and white Treecreepers foraging for invertebrates on bark. In the hand they are awesome and they have the best under-tail coverts of any bird I have handled!


Newton Stringer said...

I call those stripey humbug nuthatch warblers !!

Nice to see your yanks in the hand, love that owl too... you got a blackburnian or cerulean ?

Putting a counter on the blog was quite easy, I did mine ages ago and can't remember exactly how I did it.... but if you go to my blog and click on the counter I'm sure it shows you how to do it..... I seem to remember it gives you some sort of code that you copy and paste into your layout and then its done....

Fleetwood Birder said...

I think I might have Blackburnian; I'll have a look. Thanks for the counter advice I'll give it a try.