Saturday, 12 November 2016

Garden Glory

I managed to free up a couple of hours before work yesterday morning and opted to stay at home and get some chores done with the garden nets open. I didn't get many chores done as I seemed to get a constant steady trickle of birds from the get go!

I had a nice little variety and was pleased as I have not lived at the house very long and it is still a little unknown what lurks in the area.

It was pleasing to get a few more Gold Finch having caught a small number last week, and the feeders seem to be attracting a few Chaffinch too so am hopeful of picking some of these up over the winter months.

Adult Male Goldfinch
Male Chaffinch

Female Chaffinch

Adult Goldfinch Tail Pattern - Notice the gentle rounded tips to the tail
Juvenile Goldfinch Tail Pattern - Showing nice points and much more angular in appearance
The cuticles on my fingers had the pleasure of Blue and Great Tits to contend with! Despite this I still find Great Tits beautiful and enjoy the privilege of seeing them up close and personal. A Robin and Dunnock also graced the nets and were firsts for the garden (the joys of starting a fresh in a new location).

Adult Male Great Tit
Finger biting Blue Tit 


I was quite excited to also catch some Starlings and am forever hopeful that one will turn up in a far flung eastern country such as Russia, but a control from anywhere would be nice! They have lots of identification and sexing criteria which keeps fresh faced ringers such as me on our toes. I also had another Blackbird which seem to be surprisingly numerous in my suburban location.

Common Starling - Hopefully Russia bound!

Adult Male Blackbird - The dark beak is sometimes regarded as being a sign that it is Scandinavian in origin. I am not sure that there is any truth in this personally!

The most exciting visitor for the morning came in the form of an adult Collard Dove. This is only the second that I have had the pleasure of ringing. I know they are common and in some peoples eyes deemed as vermin. However I love them and they truly are stunning at close quarters. Hopefully this chap will be back to grace the garden throughout the winter and bring along some of his friends.

A real pleasure to handle and surprisingly placid

I just love that bright red eye!
There is nothing more I love (except my other half in case she is reading this) than getting out on my local ringing site and seeing whats about and knowing that I am contributing to the conservation and data collection of each species that I process. But I am also aware that some of the species that are in dire need of such contribution visit my garden and the feeders and they in turn should not be neglected. It is in my opinion as useful as Constant Effort Site data if done in the right way.

I wonder what the garden will throw up tomorrow morning?


  1. How long did it take you to train Pete?

  2. Hi John, sorry for the late reply! It takes a minimum of 2 years. But in my opinion well worth it. Private message me on Facebook if you want some more information.