Some Goldfinches

The snow is melting now and the weather is sunny and moderately warm. But when it was snowing and freezing, I had a bit of luck and a few goldfinches visited the feeder, which does not happen very often. Pretty pictures that illustrate a very, very grim story.

©Charly, all rithgs reserved. Click for full size.

I seem to have seen a lot fewer birds on the feeder this year than previously. Almost no greenfinches, no bramblings, no woodpeckers, just very few blackbirds and siskins. I am not alone in this observation, it is scientifically documented trend across the whole of Central Europe, so much so that it was even reported in evening news in TV.

Then I have read that bird populations across Europe are collapsing, following a collapse of insect populations due to overuse of pesticides that kill both the insects and the plants they feed on.

And nothing will be done about it until it is too late, because not overusing pesticides would mean lower corporate profits.

Some Bullfinches

On Tuesday I will get the stitches out, and hopefully I will be able to write again without constantly tripping over my fingers. But I had some luck at the feeder finally, maybe because we have plenty of snow and it stays on for a month by now. So here are some dapper pictures from this week.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

Identifying birds by sound…

… is like dancing architecture. Or something. Yesterday I managed to go for a walk, the first one this week. As I was standing in a clearing I heard a strange bird call, getting louder, coming towards me. Since it flew against a light sky all I could see was the silhouette: Small head, size a bit bigger than a jay, slender. Relatively small wings. And I had its call. If human voices are unsuitable for reproducing bird songs, human letters are so bad it doesn’t even make sense to get started. The best description I could give is ” sounds like your V-belt needs replacement” and if you put that into google you get 1.000.000 hits for V-belts.

I finally found a site with bird sounds that allowed you to browse by families and going from the size and shape I could finally identify it as a green woodpecker.

green woodpecker

Maybe it was even this fellow?

I also found out that the mysterious bird I’ve heard so often but never have seen is a black woodpecker.

Fearless Tit

Yesterday we had sun, but I did not have camera ready. Today I had camera ready, but there was no sun. I got lots of blurry or dark pictures of dinosaurs.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

At least some of the tits became accustomed to feeding directly at the windowsill. They flee when we move too suddenly behind the window, but as long as we are careful, they do not mind. They are the only birds who do, others are not as fearless. Tits are really forward.

A Handsome Dude and a Little Tit

I do not have much luck with birdwatching lately, very little birds came visiting so far, and when some did, the pictures I have managed to make were totalski crapski. Finally some bullfinches have shown up too and I managed to get two useful pictures. Somewhat useful, because it is non-stop overcast and the light is, well, totalski crapski.

In addition to that the seasonal gloom is getting to me. Not as much as to despair or succumb to gloom, but enough not to feel like writing anything. Or even reading. Or doing anything else much. I have a whole folder full of pictures how to make a gingerbread house, and a few knife-making posts worth, but I just cannot convince myself they are worth writing. I wanted to play a PC game for a while and I cannot gather the enthusiasm needed even for that.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

Jack’s Walk

Well nested, ©voyager, all rights reserved

This tree sits at the crossroad of several paths and is obviously well-favoured by some type of smallish bird. Jack and I pass this way often, but we’ve never seen an actual bird here only the nests. Maybe the birds are tucked up inside or maybe they’re out searching for food or maybe they’ve gone to Florida and won’t return until spring. We’ll keep looking, but something tells me I won’t see birds here any time soon.

Friday Feathers

We have many wonderful reader contributions which I’ll post the next week (no, I haven’t forgotten those). For now it’s the rest of the birds that I met walking through a Winter Wonderland.

On the first day I walked past a shrubbery that is always full of birds, but as we were approaching they all flew away, but all in a certain direction. Some landed in that shrubbery and then took off as well. we soon spotted the reason for this:

common buzzard

©Giliell, all rights reserved

It’s a common buzzard, but they are not frequent in this particular area as it offers little space for soaring.

Walking further we then saw our usual small friends.


©Giliell, all rights reserved

I cannot quite decide between sparrow and lady chaffinch with the back and tail being hidden.


©Giliell, all rights reserved

Crows are always slightly out of focus, I’m afraid.


©Giliell, all rights reserved

Or hiding.


©Giliell, all rights reserved

Or leaving.

great tit

©Giliell, all rights reserved

But you can always count on the tits.