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Miranda Hodgson

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Young birds are out and about in the garden

Posted by Miranda Hodgson on 07 May 2010 at 03:24 PM

The vegetable garden is filled with the calls of young birds. Around the edges of the garden, the shrubs and hedgerow plants became first nesting sites and then nurseries for blackbirds, robins, tits, finches and a single pheasant, currently tucked up amongst some nettles, next to the boundary wall. The pheasant is very close to the compost bays and we often pass by, but we pretend we don’t see one another and she stays put.


The pheasant, pretending I'm not there

 

By now, many bird eggs have hatched, the young ones have feathers and are starting to leave their nests to explore their new worlds. Young blackbirds (Turdus merula) squawk from the undergrowth, impatient for a parent to arrive with the next meal of worms, caterpillars or grubs. Their parents will feed them away from the nest until their tail feathers have grown and they can fly properly and then they’ll be on their own. Until then, we’ll keep coming across them, glaring petulantly from their perches in low branches.

 

A young blackbird, three days out of the nest

 

As I work, the bold little robin (Erithacus rubecula) has been coming ever closer, guarding each patch of soil disturbed, dashing in to quickly pick up any worm or insect that I uncover and taking them back to the nest to feed its young ones. If there is a branch nearby, it will watch from above and sing loudly to other robins, so they aren’t tempted to trespass on its territory. If there isn’t a handy branch, I will see it standing on the ground, usually about 1.5m (5 feet) away, continually stretching up to its full height and then bobbing down again. Whether it does that out of nervousness or impatience is a mystery. Maybe it’s both.

Comments

pushkin said:

What a great post, and two marvellous photographs.  You make me feel as if I were right there!

on 07 May 2010 at 04:31 PM

sue1002 said:

You have a lovely selection of young birds there Miranda.  I haven't seen any young ones in our garden yet.

on 07 May 2010 at 05:30 PM

EvaInNL said:

Miranda, your blogs are a pleasure to read, the photographs always stunning!

on 07 May 2010 at 08:22 PM

richardpeeej said:

This is a lovely post Miranda. It is nice to see new life in the form of animals and plants  that are all around us at this time of year. Great photographs too.

on 07 May 2010 at 10:02 PM

David Benson said:

delightful.

on 08 May 2010 at 11:34 AM

Miranda Hodgson said:

Thank you, everyone!

We are still waiting for the pheasant eggs to hatch, which can't be long now. Really looking forward to that and will try to get photographs!

on 10 May 2010 at 09:47 AM