Thursday, 25 June 2015

Singing for his supper

Here's the resident blackbird again, this time drawing attention to himself by singing noisily from the ivy-covered fence.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Waiting to be served

The resident blackbird male has got me well-trained.  When he spots me in the kitchen, he alights on the fence close to the back door and waits until I go out and feed him a few dried mealworms.  It also works in reverse - I can call him in by shaking the glass jar of worms.
Today he was obviously feeling quite relaxed in the summer warmth and decided to sunbathe on the patio table whilst he was waiting for his human to appear.

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Bad news for barn owls

Tonight I went to a barn owl ringing demonstration at Lower Derwent Valley NNR. We were supposed to see barn owl chicks being ringed, but it's bad news for the owls so far in 2015.  The vole cycle is at a low and the adult birds cannot get enough food to raise a brood - 30 nest boxes had been checked but there wasn't a single chick.

It may be that the owls breed later in 2015 when the vole population hopefully goes into an upward phase of its cycle, but in the meantime a pair of adult barn owls without leg rings had been carefully 'bagged' and we watched them being ringed instead (the birds are much calmer when laid on their backs).
When the ringing was all done the owls were released to fly off silently over the fields.

Friday, 5 June 2015

A quick roe down the River Humber

Today I visited Spurn Point National Nature Reserve at the mouth of the Humber, with the other volunteers from Pearson Park Wildlife Garden in Hull.

We used the Unimog off-roader to drive down to the tip of the Point, and en route spotted some of the reserve's roe deer.

The reserve is home to a huge range of wildlife, and later on I saw this bluetail damselfly near one of Spurn's brackish ponds.