Monday, 4 February 2013

Birds in the snow

A couple of weeks ago we had some snow, not a lot, but it lasted for about a week and consequently things got a bit hard for our feathered friends.

Birds such as the Waxwing are used to harsh weather, coming from the European Tundra, but they were struggling to find the now depleted berries on which they feast. A few weeks ago these birds were everywhere, but now the reports are getting fewer and it is thought that they have moved off to Europe.

Waxwing

Waxwing
The Grey Heron is a familiar sight, but the one below looked decidedly 'miffed' at all this white stuff, curtailing his fishing exploits somewhat.

Grey Heron
The gardeners friend, the Robin is adept at using us humans to find food, hanging around while we dig the borders and jumping down from his perch in order to grab a tasty morsel or two.

Robin
Times are hard for Owls at the moment, numbers of the Barn Owl are in freefall due to the wet summer and with snow on the ground they find it very hard to hunt.

Barn Owl
My wife's favourite, the badger bird comes into the garden with a couple of his mates, feeds on the fatballs and is gone in a few seconds. A lot of these small birds won't survive long periods of cold.

Long-tailed Tit
The snow has now gone and some spring like weather has arrived. The birds are starting to sing more and several are starting to check out the nest boxes, just in time for another cold snap at the end of the week.

16 comments:

  1. Lovely set of images John.
    Love the LTT shot in particular.

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  2. HI John...Darn those Cardinal shots are just gorgeous, all I can say is they better show up here before the winter is over ; )
    Wonderful photos,love the Long Tailed Tit!
    Your weather is sounding like ours..can't make up it's mind !
    Grace

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    1. Hi Grace,
      I am sure you mean Waxwing, if we had a Cardinal in Britain you wouldn't be able to move for twitchers!
      I just wish we could have a dry spell, preferably a few months! ;)
      J

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  3. Hi John, Waxwings really are magnificent creatures, there is something quite magical about them I think. I read they are starting to leave us already, I think they've had a rather lean time for berries this Winter :-(

    Lovely photos as always. I'm very envious about the Barn Owl, I haven't seen one for years and have never photographed one.

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    1. Thanks Jan,
      There are still a few about, but the numbers have really dropped off. I think the berry/fruit crop as a whole has been quite poor this year, probably due to the weather.
      Thank you. Barn Owls aren't as common as they once were, but there is a site in Peterborough which is fairly reliable.
      J

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  4. Hi John,

    I'm in absolute awe of the beauty of those birds and the essence you have revealed in the magic of these photos.

    Today, Tuesday, it began to snow again in Leek. Oh my

    John, I'm profoundly grateful for your support. Thank you.

    In peace and hope,

    Gary

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    1. Hi Gary,
      Many thanks, I try my best! :)
      IT has just been raining today, don't know how it can rain and it be so cold?!
      My support is there, hopefully it will help you?!
      J

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  5. Wonderful collection of birds. I love the waxwings and the Barn Owl is awesome. And I just love your cute Robin! Lovely photos!

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    1. Thank you Eileen, too kind! :)
      J

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  6. Those are some really beautiful photos that you've taken. Really captured the mood of the birds!

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    1. Hi Lou Mary,
      Thank you. They all looked pretty cheesed of, didn't they?!
      J

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  7. Strangely, although there were a lot of disturbing facts within it, this blog has cheered me up! It must be the wonderful pictures.....
    Click here for Bazza’s Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

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    1. I am not quite sure how to take that Bazza! Didn't realise there were any facts in it! ;)
      J

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