All about birds

Mon 31st Oct 2011

Something happened this week that made me really sad. I found a cormorant eating the fish on our land. We’ve all sorts of fish in our pond – roach, rudd and lots of smaller fish that the kingfishers like. The kingfishers have left now to fly to the estuary for winter and I’m worried there won’t be much left for them when they come back. Cormorants are known to have a big appetite. You’d never imagine they’d come so far inland to feed but tis easy pickings I guess.

Anyway, when I saw him I rushed down to chase him away and do you know, before he flied off he coughed up a big fish. Must have just swallowed it whole and was getting rid of it so he could take off. I called him a few names and told him to stay on the coast where he belongs.

His place was soon taken by a heron. These beautiful birds are regular visitors and also take a fair few of our fish. I know that they, like the cormorant, need to feed, and I don’t begrudge them a fish or two, just so long as they don’t take the lot.

It’s been a real week for the birds as I’ve another bird story to tell you. Funny coincidence as I discovered by chance that the BBC are reshowing my ‘Year with the Birds’ series on BBC4, Wednesdays at 7.30 pm. Julie went over the road to see her friend Linda last Wednesday and there I was on the telly.

Well, back to my story. You may have seen my film of the wrens, 18 of them all huddled up in a nesting box on the side of my cabin. On the same building I also have an owl box which had a camera in. When I took the camera out it left a golf ball sized hole and the wrens have found their way through this hole into the cabin. I went in there the other day and wondered what was happening, startled birds flying this way and that. I left the door open for a while so they could get out safely. You should see the state of the place, everything covered in ….. Well I’m sure you can imagine.

I’ve also got lots to tell you about the red deer rut but that will have to wait until next week now. I hope you’re able to get out and about and see some wildlife between now and then. There’s so much going on at this time of year as animals and birds prepare for the harsh days of winter up ahead. With a little patience you’ll see some wonderful sights.