If you’re familiar with Mary Poppins, you will probably recognise this quote from the song Feed the Birds. If you aren’t familiar with Mary Poppins then you won’t recognise it. At that point I’m not sure what to say. It’s not really my place to comment on your lack of cultural education, but if you get a chance to watch the film over Christmas, I hope you will do so. Apart from the more traditional aspects of Christmas, it is the season to watch films you wouldn’t normally watch during the rest of the year. It’s a Wonderful Life, Muppet Christmas Carol and The Great Escape – there’s an amnesty on watching films that have no place in the other 11 months of the year.
Anyway – from films to feeding birds.
When we arrived we had fieldfares on the verges. They flew into the hedges, startled by the car, and then flew into the field as I tried to get the camera trained on them. Most of the feeders were empty, as we hadn’t filled them since Wednesday. The large feeder still had food in it – the linseed and sunflower seeds from the mouse-infested bin. They hadn’t left it all, but they had definitely slowed down when they got to it, so I’m guessing that the smell of mouse urine puts birds off. It certainly puts me off.
The other problem food was the feeder with the rapeseed, which came from a sample we’d been given for Open Farm Sunday. It had been in the mouse bin but had been in a closed packet so didn’t smell. I’m wondering if there’s something about rapeseed that mice and birds don’t like.
Actually, there was a third problem – ice, cold and plastic water trays don’t mix. In other words, we broke the water dishes as we tried to get the ice out. Fortunately there are puddles to provide water (which made for an interesting few minutes of ice-breaking as we wondered who would be the first to fall over) and the birds have never used the water trays much anyway.
There wasn’t much action on the feeders, despite them being washed and filled with fresh seed.
I was particulalrly pleased to get the bullfinch, even though it’s a female blending in with the cover, because I heard the call behind me and was able to spot her in the hedge. It’s my first bullfinch photo, and the first time I’ve seen one so close to the centre – they are normally in the hedges up the lane.
The blackbird is one of our normal family with a few white feathers. I don’t know if the white feathers come back in the same place after moulting – if they do this must be a new generation as last year’s male had white in the wings.