20 February 2010

Other commitments

As I sit and write this quick update at 12.30pm on a glorious saturday afternoon, it looks increasingly likely that I am going to miss out on birding this weekend :-(

Family, friends, jobs to do, places to be, drinks and fine dining, blah blah blah - all very nice of course, but are they any substitute for a freezing cold reservoir on a wintery morning? Erm....

Anyway, not very much birding action to report then, except to note that I've just had a jay in the garden, an extremely uncommon sighting for me (only the second I can recall in the garden, and the first for a couple of years). Frankly it did pretty well just to force its way through the perpetual state of warfare that exists in my garden between the starlings and the house sparrows, a conflict that has been heightened in recent weeks by their mutual appreciation of a new fat ball recipe I've been using. The starlings are particular fans, and have taken up a near permanent position around the two feeders, much to everyone else's chagrin - including mine. I only started making the damn things to reduce the cost of feeding the birds. Now that the homemade variety are are proving twice as popular as the shop-bought variety, I'm pretty much back where I started - half the price but twice as many.

Right then, I'm off to the shops - I need a wheelbarrow full of suet, lard, dried fruit...

Bird of the day: Jay (Garrulus glandarius), one of the world's most beautiful crows, vivid of colour and yet surprisingly hard to see, especially for non birdwatchers.

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