In my last blog I mentioned that the birds did not seem to be using the new bird bath saucer for bathing and I concluded that it was too shallow for them to use, although it was fine for drinking.
Last week, I purchased a large plant saucer that is 15 inches across by 2 inches deep and that has done the job and the feral pigeons have been making great use of it all week having their ablutions. I think they read my blogs as well! The other day there were four in the saucer at one go with another 6 or 7 queueing to have their turn, so they are copycats. It’s certainly much better for them as it is deeper and they can have a good bath without emptying the saucer, but I’m leaving the shallow one alongside for drinking purposes. It’s not just the feral pigeons that have been using it as the blackbirds also find it’s very suitable for them for a bath and a number of birds have been coming and making use of it for a drink. The main thing I have to check is that the water gets changed after a lot of bathing as it will be mucky. One or two of the starlings after feeding on some of the suet items make a dash across the lawn and wash their beaks in the bird bath and probably wipe them afterwards on the grass, always something that amuses me.
The wood pigeons have been around as two pairs again during the past week and my picture is of one pair sitting on my fence after they had been preening one another and obviously are a well established couple. The sparrows and starlings have been collecting nesting materials ranging from moss to discarded pigeon feathers. I’m sure the feathers make a lovely nest wherever they are building one. The sparrows have also been tugging at blades of grass and going off with them so I assume that is also for nest lining and that will do nicely too.
One of the crows has still been coming on occasions to take some food particularly if there is something specifically to its liking and the jackdaws in a couple of pairs have been coming to feed, although not perhaps as much as I have seen in recent weeks. I’ve been watching the antics of one of the jackdaws as it has been attempting to feed from the suet log and can only just reach from a branch in the cobnut tree and of course pecking at the log, means that it goes further away from it. However, it was persistent with it so it must’ve been a worthwhile feed. One or two magpies are still visiting, coming generally later in the day hopping about on the lawn and prancing around as only they can.
The starlings and robins certainly enjoy the mealworms that I’ve been putting out, either in the seed feeder tray or scattered on the path just underneath it. I think the blackbirds have also been taking some of them as they will have probably been eaten within 10 minutes. The robin often arrives in the tree while I am scattering them. I tend to keep to set times for putting the food out, which of course it is becoming a little bit extended now we have the lighter evenings, and if they haven’t had their food, I’ll usually find some sitting around waiting and appearing before I’ve even got back indoors. Other smaller birds visiting are the blue tits and great tits coming to the peanuts or suet logs and a couple of dunnocks as well.