Day 25: Today’s Close Up Monday is all about goldfinches.
This colourful finch has been on the increase in the UK, mainly due to changes in feeding habits, enjoying seeds from garden feeders. They ranked #6 in the 2018 RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch.
A very sociable bird, in autumn they flock in charms of 100+.
They predominantly eat seeds (sunflower and niger among others) but also eat aphids. Males are the only ones who can access the seeds from teasel heads. In Victorian times they were captured in their thousands for caged displays. They can have up to three broods a year and nest in trees and bushes.
Goldfinches Picture by David Evans
Goldfinch Picture by David Evans
In the past my yarden has attracted charms of some 20+ birds. Do you have any goldfinches visiting your feeders? They are such pretty birds.
Huge thanks to Sharon from the wonderful, Sunshine and Celandines, for bringing this little initiative to my attention. The premise, to do something wild every day for the month of October. It’s a bit like 30 Days Wild, though this is a celebration of all things autumnal! I thought I would give it a go!
The lovely Louise on her blog is also embarking on Wild October, as are a host of others on the Facebook 30 Days Wild page! Go check them out for inspiration!
Autumn seems to be slowly creeping into my yarden. The Japanese anemone has flowered, a shore sign of autumn and the salvia ‘mystic spires’ are as tall as me!
Sadly summer for the NW of England wasn’t quite as nice as it was in other areas of the country. This has had an effect on the vegetables I have attempted to grow in the yarden. There are three tomatoes still green on the vine and I noticed the other day that I have two peppers also growing!! Think I’ll need to bring them both inside to grow and ripen more.
Since I have become a sort of recluse these past few weeks, there isn’t really much wild going on! Mid week while washing the dishes I stood watching in awe as a garden spider reconstructed his/her web.
I am happy to still report that the flock of 6+ sparrows are continuing to visit the feeders, as are a pair of blue tits, charms of goldfinches, hoards of starlings and pigeons! The dawn chorus has been replaced by the cackle of corvids!
This week, with the weather being settled, I have seen some lovely sunrises. So today I managed to snap a picture along with the condensation clinging to the windows! Brrrr… it’s getting colder!
Today, while doing the laundry I noticed the garden spider had a fresh kill, all wrapped up in thread. It was fascinating watching the spider tuck into its meal!
Since this is a rather impromptu post I’ll sign off now and finish with a short poem.
Autumn leaves are falling,
Falling all around,
Floating softly to the ground,
Like tear drops falling,
Without a sound.
Autumn leaves are scattered,
Scattered all around,
Tossed upon the ground,
Like dreams torn and tattered,
Lying all around.
Are you joining in Wild October? What do you enjoy most about autumn?
The news from the garden this weekend is that we DO have Honey Bees visiting the flowers! I saw up to seven at one time enjoying the Salvia, the Borage and the Dahlia. This year I seem to have a greater variety of plants for the visiting bees to enjoy. The Bumblebees also enjoy visiting the Dahlia and Borage as well as the Passion Flower.
The bird feeders have well and truly been ‘attacked’ this weekend! We have many species of garden bird visiting as listed below.
House Sparrows, have continued to visit in numbers of up to eight if not more!
Goldfinch charms have visited numbering over 12, most are fledglings.
Starlings have made a noisy return. This years fledglings are now getting their adult coats and love the fat blocks on offer.
Pigeons are too many to count and follow the smaller birds into the garden as they know there will be many seeds dropped.
The Dunnock has made a welcome return, though not the same one as visited previously. This one seems to be very bold and stands his/her ground in relation to competition from the Pigeons! A most welcome visitor to the garden!
I can’t say I have seen the Blue Tits this week as it’s mainly Sparrows and Goldfinches that I see, but I hope they manage to visit the feeders.