Birds Garden

The Little Lifes of Sparrows

Haven’t made a film of the sparrows in the back garden this year. I suppose because they’re so ever-present they’ve become everyday normal and ordinary.

There’s a good dozen or more (and probably another dozen more to be added once the latest brood are born, bred, and fed)

The life of a back garden sparrow consists of:
Chewing up the buds on the wisteria and fruit trees.
Ripping up the grass and pecking in the plant pots for nesting material.
Flicking about the pond, swimming in the bird bath.
Squabbling and shouting at one another.
Chatting and chirping with one another.
Fighting and mating with one another.
Ocassionally getting pounced on by sparrowhawks and being made dinner of (2 so far)
Bouncing between wisteria, willow and ivy (where they sleep and have their nests) in nonstop fizzy whizzes.
Possessively guarding the feeders from other small birds.
Being pests.
Being comical.
Being delightful.

The back garden wouldn’t be the same without its sunny funny family of little sparrows.

Filming: Hazel Brown; Words & Vid: Ian Nisbet

Sparrowhawk No 2

Yet another sparrowhawk got itself booked into the back garden cafe with a table reservation for one this lunchtime.

Sparrowhawk male 4 30 April 2019

A small male but just as voracious as the bigger female who’d visited last December.

Sparrowhawk male 3 30 April 2019

It stood right next to the small kitchen window ontop of the air-raid shelter.

No time to waste or lose. It was at it with rapid efficiency.

Plucking, splitting, stripping, and guzzling down its din dins.

Sparrowhawk male 2 30 April 2019

It heard voices from the neighbouring garden so took off.

Clutching the carcass in its clawsome talons.

Sparrowhawk male 5 30 April 2019

Providing itself with the ultimate in ‘Takeaway Fast Food’.

There’s more than enough din dins (juicy fat sparrows) to keep this pair of sparrowhawks fed for many more months to come.

Thrilled filming & commentary: Hazel Brown; Words: Ian Nisbet

Sparrows are Us

Sparrows cheeky Feb 2019 edit

Around twenty sparrows have taken up residence in my garden. A small urban back garden.

They descend onto a young willow tree where I hang feeders filled with fatballs, which they love!

They bathe in the pond, drink from a little birdbath, whilst other members of this large family chase each other all around the garden which they share with a blackbird, a couple of dunnocks, a beautiful rusty wren and two blackcaps.

Late afternoon, when the light goes, they scoot up into the ivy-clad wall of an old barn to rest.

By morning they are back again, much refreshed and busily chattering and cheeping as loud as can be!

Words & Illustration : Hazel Brown

A couple of Chaffinches

For the last 3 or 4 years a chaffinch, every early summer, has been singing away outside my bedroom window. Day after day, from first thing in the morning through to last thing at night, the chaffinch sings chaffinchly on and on and on.

But he’s too hidden away for me to see (or film)

This vid shows 2 separate instances of chaffinches being spotted.
Once, very visibly, at a friends feeders on Dartmoor: a distinctively coloured adult male.
The second, is of a female filmed up at Tessier Gardens from nearly 2 years ago. Less brightly coloured than the male, and creeping half hidden along the edge of the grass, but no less delightfully (or excitedly) seen.

Filming: Haze Brown; Vid: Ian Nisbet