|Wren in my garden|
The other striking feature of Hilly Fields bird life at the moment is the number of juvenile birds which is of course to be expected. The most significant was a young Chiffchaff which Terry spotted in the Eastern Rd hawthorns. We also saw one of the adults. This is good news for it means that the birds have bred in the park which is a "first" as far as we are aware in the six year duration of the bird champion scheme. In the past, Chiffchaffs have been heard only at the beginning or end of their migratory period. This year, two of them stayed around to mate and raise at least one little one. There were plenty of juvenile Tits as well, their colouring not yet as rich as their parents, and I spent some time tracking a young Robin which had not yet acquired its red breast, but it was hard to get decent photos of any of these small birds through all the foliage. The best image I could manage is the juvenile Wood Pigeon below which hasn't yet gained the white collar or the plumpness of its elders. It reminds me of that old chestnut of a question: why do you never see baby pigeons? The answer is because you don't look in their nests! Baby pigeons are fed such a rich diet by their parents and grow so fast as nestlings that by the time they fledge, they're as big as their mum and dad, or almost.
|Meadow Brown on Tansy in the wildflower meadow|
|Speckled Wood in the wood|
STOP PRESS - Sue did another Hilly Fields walkabout on 30 July - 17 species seen including four Mistle Thrushes. Normally, we see two so it's safe to assume that they have successfully bred. She also heard a Nuthatch - an occasional visitor - and saw House Martins flying overhead with Swifts. A good result.