Wildlife & Gardens

Discussion in 'Taylor's Tittle-Tattle - General Banter' started by Sting, May 7, 2019.

  1. UEA_Hornet

    UEA_Hornet First Team Captain

    There seem to be a lot of starling murmations around recently. I spent 10 minutes watching what seemed to be a massive one from my town centre window on Saturday evening, although I think it was out to the west of the town which is open country. I think it's the first time I've seen one.
     
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  2. StuBoy

    StuBoy Forum Cad and Bounder

    Taken Monday and Tuesday off this week just to do gardening! Moved into our new house in October and the garden space is a real step up from our last house. I don't really know where to start! So my method is to slowly work around each flower bed clearing and tidying them up. The previous owners really let everything go. We also have a massive tree in the front garden, and I'm still battling the leaf tidy up and it's now Spring!

    I just have to accept the garden won't be in a place I want it to be in for a few years I think.
     
  3. Keighley

    Keighley Squad Player

    The usual advice is to leave things be for a while to see what comes up and what you want to keep anyway. So that justifies some degree of inaction!

    IMO it takes 4-5 years to have a garden that you are really happy with.
     
  4. StuBoy

    StuBoy Forum Cad and Bounder

    Indeed, that's what I have been doing the last few months. This morning was the first real effort at tidying up some bits in the front garden and planting a few snowdrops and bluebells for next year. Will get back out there this afternoon, and then tomorrow is a day of back garden work.
     
  5. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

    A seventy year old albatross has just hatched a chick on an island where there are one million albatrosses!
     
  6. It's never too late IBB ;)
    (I know you're not 70 !!.....)
     
  7. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    I’m sure you’ve all been losing sleep over what this was. The majority vote from those locally who know the wildlife we get at this particular watering hole is that this was, after all, a humble river rat not the more glamorous water vole. Was still cute though.
     
  8. I don't believe there is such a things as a "river rat". I think it is either a common "brown rat", the kind that you see round urban bins, that happens to live there near the river, or a water vole. I think the thinner face suggests it's probably a rat rather than a vole.
    https://www.discoverwildlife.com/ho...ference-between-a-brown-rat-and-a-water-vole/
    Difficult to tell the size, but is it too large to be a mouse ?
     
  9. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

    Haha!
    When I told Mr IBB he said "Don't go laying any eggs!"
    I heard some Kashmir goats have laid siege to a Welsh town or village. I can't remember where but the goats were given as a gift by Queen Victoria.
     
    The undeniable truth likes this.
  10. That's a long, long, way for them to walk for an invasion. They must really hate the Welsh :)
     
  11. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

    Best not to upset a goat is something I've always carried with me.
    My Mother's friend,Jean Dean ( great name!) had a lamb called 'Lamb' and a goat called,yes you're ahead of me here, 'Goat'.
    'Goat' was not to be trusted and was quite crafty in his attempts to butt you.
     
  12. Keighley

    Keighley Squad Player

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-56147770
     
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  13. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

  14. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    I’d rather upset a goat than a pig. As a little girl, I was chased by an escaped pig on a relative’s farm and it was quite traumatising.
     
  15. The Voice of Reason

    The Voice of Reason First Team Captain

    What pig was that? The farmers son :D
     
  16. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

    Oh they didn't have a pig so I can't reasonably comment.
    Did you upset it in any way?
    Not known for their pugilistic tendencies as far as I'm aware.
    Perhaps it was in a bad mood.
     
  17. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    Didn’t upset it as far as I can remember. Someone hadn’t shut the gate of its pen properly and it escaped; I think I was in the way as it made its (ultimately unsuccessful) bid for freedom.
     
  18. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    I have a question for those ornithologists among you. Driving down my road today I came across a very large bird feasting on a carcass. As I approached it, it flew away, carrying the whole dead squirrel off in its talons. The bird was very big and as it flew away its wings looked almost pink in colour. Could it have been a kestrel?
     
  19. Hi HH. If it was very large it couldn't really have been a kestrel. Kestrels are really pretty small. If it was feasting on a carcass it was almost certainly a red kite or buzzard. "Pink" colour - could that be the red in the red kite's plumage that you glimpsed ??
    upload_2021-3-16_18-22-19.jpeg upload_2021-3-16_18-23-20.jpeg
     
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  20. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Like TUT says has to be a Red Kite. Wonderful to observe. Growing in numbers after initial release in the Chilterns. Almost extinct in Britain a matter of several decades ago. But still persecuted by idiots. I have rather stronger words for them.
     
  21. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

    We have a couple that fly over here.
    One has a little kink in its wing. Stunning birds.
    Three goldfinches on the sunflower seed feeder this morning,celebrating our three goals no doubt!
    Having purchased a pair of shears for my neighbour from Lidl's and nearly disemboweling two poor people on exiting,she told me they are too big!
    Back I trudged to get my refund.
     
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  22. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

  23. Harrow Orn

    Harrow Orn Squad Player

    As others have said probably a Red Kite. I actually see them daily now, there are so many around. They have certainly been increasing in numbers since the first lockdown. I dont know if that actually is the reason but whenever im out for a walk I look up and often see one just gliding above.

    Saw one the other day swoop down in the park, only then to be chased away by a couple of other birds. Quite cool to see.
     
  24. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    Yes I am seeing more of them. Have got better at recognising them now with their distinctive tails. Had two gliding above our house yesterday - very striking.
    Also came across something very large on the path ahead as we walked our dogs in the woods near our house yesterday. Didn’t get a great look as it flew off very fast but it was very big and was brown. I then realised what it was doing on the path as we came across the half eaten carcass of a pigeon that I assume it had just caught (the pigeon wasn’t there when we passed the same point an hour or so earlier so was a fresh kill). Any views on what it was likely to be? If it helps, I’m based on the Hampshire/Surrey/Sussex border.
     
  25. A few more recent garden bird photos inc winter visitors blackcap, redpoll, siskin and brambling.
    Blackcap, Garden, Wigginton 3-2021 #_0366_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Lesser redpoll,Garden, Wigginton, 3-2021 #_0138_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Lesser redpoll,Garden, Wigginton, 3-2021 #_0174_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Lesser redpoll,Garden, Wigginton, 3-2021 #_0195_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Long-tailed tit, Garden, Wigginton, 3-2021 #_0215_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Siskin, Garden, Wigginton 3-2021 #_0288_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Garden, Wigginton, 3-2021 #_0006_edited-1 wfcf.jpg Brambling, Garden, Wigginton 3-2021 #_0510_edited-1 wfcf.jpg

    Brambling, Garden, Wigginton 3-2021 #_0588_edited-1wfcf.jpg
     
  26. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    Last edited: Mar 21, 2021
  27. Blackcap - refused to pose, so the best photo I could get !
     
  28. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    Difficult to say really HH. Maybe a female Goshawk or Buzzard.
    Imagine saying that several decades ago. Blackcaps overwintering instead of migrating to southern Europe and relying on feeders like yours TUT. Another clear indicator of warmer British winters. Even som chiffchaffs are now overwintering.
     
    HappyHornet24 likes this.
  29. Yes and of course many blackcaps and chiffchaff head to the UK from central/northern Europe instead of Africa these days to overwinter. Amazing the changes over the last 30 years or so. I didn't see my first goldfinch until I was well into my 20s. I had 45 perched in a tree in the garden about a week ago due to the niger seed feeders. Sparrowhawks common in gardens too now.
     
    Smudger likes this.
  30. WillisWasTheWorst

    WillisWasTheWorst Its making less grammar mistake's thats important

    Unlikely to be a Goshawk, I would have thought; they’re pretty rare. Any sizeable birds of prey in the Home Counties are probably either Red Kites or Buzzards.
     
    HappyHornet24 likes this.
  31. Female sparrowhawk ? They are larger than the males, brown, and can appear pretty large and pigeons are a common prey (nice sized meal and fairly slow !). Could be a goshawk but they tend to be in proper forest. I've never seen a goshawk :-( ....well not a Eurasian Goshawk but have seen African Goshawk)
     
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  32. Diamond

    Diamond Squad Player

    For a bit of a laugh I tried cutting up a few supermarket bought tomatoes and planting the seeds. One lot of plum tomatoes and the rest some huge tomatoes that I don't know the variety of.

    Boom Toms.jpg
     
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  33. I Blame Bassett

    I Blame Bassett Squad Player

    What a treat!
    All stunning but I love a Long Tailed t1t. Brilliant and inventive nest builders too.
    Hideous.
    One of the charities I support is connected to Oxford University. I joined after the appalling murder of Cecil the lion by trophy hunters. I had a video from Born Free or possibly WWF Saturday about the female rangers guarding the tigers habitat.
    I take enormous solace from the wonderful work that so many conservation charities do to protect our world.
    Some people are vile however,utterly repulsive and should never see the light of day.
     
    Smudger likes this.
  34. Just saw this little fella in the garden. Charging all over the place but just about managed to get the camera on him after ending a work call very very quickly ! Think it's a weasel as no black end to the tail (otherwise could have been a stoat). Never seen one before and it was there ......in my bloody garden !
    upload_2021-3-23_12-25-37.png
     
  35. Smudger

    Smudger Messi's Mad Coach Staff Member

    As I mentioned before the work done by volunteers and those directly involved in protecting animals often gets overlooked. So many are killed in the line of duty and also leave dependants behind. I was wondering if it is time for the UN to create some sort of international brigade to help these groups. The problem then of course is that those trying to capture and kill these endangered species are armed and will look to get more heavily armed. It really is a dreadful situation to be in.
     
    I Blame Bassett likes this.

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