The past few days have seen some horrendous weather with high winds and almost continual rain. The morning though saw a quiet spell, with some blue sky, sunshine and a much calmer wind. As a result the garden became quite busy with the birds visiting the feeders and bird baths.
The starlings are the only regular users of the ground feeder, they are not phased by the cage and move in and out without any concern. There was also much interaction around the fat blocks. This individual was watching a pair fight over the feeder.
A female Blackcap was a nice visitor, we have been getting a pair of Blackcaps coming to the feeders for the last three years. They like the apples and the fat blocks. The female is usually the first to return in the winter, the male will hopefully turn up soon.
The blue tits were everywhere again, so it was nice to be able to watch this Great Tit. They really are a striking bird with the dark black stripe down the chest and belly. I remember when i was living in the USA, the excitement generated when a great tit turned up at Cape May, and how it was described as an "awesome looking" bird. It is and we here in Britain don't appreciate it.
As the sun came through the thin clouds the Blue Tits ventured away from the feeders and up to the apples on the branches. This one looks like it is making a statement of ownership by putting its foot on the apple.
This Greenfinch looked splendid in the November sunshine. This is probably the best shot I have of one.
With the sun out, the attention moved away from the feeders and to the bird baths. First up for a dip was this blackbird.
A male House Sparrow tried to get in the bath while the Blackbird was washing, but got chased away. However when the blackbird was finished the sparrow took full advantage.
A little later he was joined by a female Chaffinch who seemed to be fascinated by the antics of the sparrow. The sparrow seemed to be quite happy to let her watch.
A Robin was singing from the trees next door, and there a short skirmish as two appeared in the garden. One flew off, while the other just sat in the tree.
The roof of the house next door is a popular place as many birds use it to scan the garden to see if it is safe to come down. This Pied Wagtail flitted from the lawn to the roof several times before settling to feed.
But the Collared Dove just sat and watched its partner as it tried to negotiate the feeders.
Goldfinches are now a very common sight not just on the niger feeders but also on the main sunflower seeds. This one was stretching its wings after a lengthy feed, showing of the lovely yellow in the black wings.
With all this activity I wasn't surprised when a Sparrowhawk flew through the garden, it scattered all the birds and the garden became quiet and still once again.