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by KiwiGav

2017 Edinburgh Garden Bird List

January 1, 2017 in sightings

Like 2016 I sadly won’t be getting to do a lot of walking and birding away from my house, as I’m stuck at home most days I’ve been increasing the amount of wildlife friendly plants (I’d do this anyway even if I wasn’t housebound) in the garden and hoping that over time this will attract and help more birds.

I had a good garden bird list for 2016 – 2016 Edinburgh Garden Bird List –  with the addition of the first Redstart I’ve ever seen, great to have a lifer in my garden! All up for 2016 there were 40 bird species I managed to identify.  There were geese that flew over that I didn’t manage to ID and a few warblers in the garden very briefly that I also couldn’t ID, I will be training up on warblers to see if I can get them for 2017.

To attract birds to my garden, as well as gardening for wildlife when I can, I use RSPB food and feeders, find great products at their website, also great for gifts for nature lovers.  I am a member of the RSPB and SOC as they do great work for UK and World birds.

2017 Garden Bird List, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK:

  1. Blackbird – Jan 1st
  2. Black-headed gull – Jan 1st
  3. Blue Tit – Jan 1st
  4. Bullfinch – Jan 4th
  5. Carrion Crow – Jan 1st
  6. Chaffinch – July 25th
  7. Chiffchaff – August 13th
  8. Coal Tit – Jan 1st
  9. Collared Dove – Jan 13th
  10. Common Buzzard – Feb 19th
  11. Dunnock – Jan 1st
  12. Goldcrest – Jan 7th
  13. Goldfinch – February 19th
  14. Great Tit – Jan 1st
  15. Greenfinch – Jan 1st
  16. Grey Heron – April 13th – FO
  17. House Sparrow – Jan 1st
  18. Jackdaw – Jan 3rd
  19. Kestrel – May 31st – FO – think this is the first I’ve seen over my garden.
  20. Long-tailed tit – October 14th
  21. Magpie – Jan 2nd
  22. Oystercatcher – July 13th – FO
  23. Redwing – Jan 30th
  24. Robin – Jan 1st
  25. Rook – March 23rd
  26. Siskin – April 28th
  27. Song Thrush – Jan 4th
  28. Sparrowhawk – Jan 7th
  29. Starling – Jan 1st
  30. Stock Dove – Jan 5th
  31. Swift – June 18th – 3 days later than last year, I haven’t seen a single swallow this year.
  32. Woodpigeon – Jan 1st
  33. Wren – Jan 24th

12 Species as of January 1st 2017.
13 Species as of January 2nd 2017.
14 Species as of January 3rd 2017.
16 Species as of January 4th 2017.
17 Species as of January 5th 2017.
19 Species as of January 7th 2017.
20 Species as of January 13th 2017.
21 Species as of January 24th 2017.
22 Species as of January 30th 2017.
24 Species as of February 19th 2017.
25 Species as of March 23rd 2017.
26 Species as of April 13th 2017.
27 Species as of April 28th 2017.
28 Species as of May 31st 2017.
29 Species as of June 18th 2017.
30 Species as of July 13th 2017.
31 Species as of July 25th 2017.
32 Species as of August 13th 2017.
33 Species as of October 14th 2017.

RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 30th of January 2017:

This year a few of the sparrows showed up, unlike in 2016: 2016 bird list and RSPB Big garden bird watch but of course more showed up just after I finished my hour.  The highlight was the Redwing and the 17 Magpies.  First Redwing of the year.

  1. Blackbird x 4
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Dunnock x 3
  4. Great Tit x 2
  5. Greenfinch x 1
  6. House Sparrow x 3
  7. Magpie x 17
  8. Redwing x 1
  9. Robin x 2
  10. Woodpigeon x 2

Frost on the ground, count done between 10.20am and 11.20am.

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by KiwiGav

2016 Garden Bird List

January 18, 2016 in sightings

I was in for an operation on 30th of December 2015 and I probably won’t get to leave my house much again during 2016 (except doctor appointments).  My generalised dystonia is getting worse and causing many more injuries.  This year I figure I’ll just have a garden bird list, birds in the garden & above and only update this one post.

To attract birds to my garden, as well as gardening for wildlife when I can, I use RSPB food and feeders, find great products at their website, also great for gifts for nature lovers.

2016 Garden Bird List, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK:

  1. Blackbird
  2. Blackcap
  3. Black-headed gull – first 100% ID February 18th – was mobbing a sparrowhawk.
  4. Blue Tit
  5. Bullfinch
  6. Carrion crow
  7. Chaffinch – first sighting 28th of January – haven’t seen one in the garden since 2014.
  8. Chiffchaff – 14th of August 2016.
  9. Coal Tit
  10. Collared Dove
  11. Common Buzzard – FO March 7th.
  12. Cormorant – FO June 19th.
  13. Dunnock
  14. Feral Pigeon
  15. Fieldfare
  16. Goldcrest
  17. Goldfinch
  18. Great Tit
  19. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  20. Greenfinch
  21. Grey Heron – Flying over February 19th.
  22. Herring Gull – managed ID April 29th, landed to get the food waste bin opened by council workers.
  23. House Sparrow
  24. Jackdaw
  25. Lesser black-backed gull – managed ID April 29th, landed to get the food waste bin opened by council workers.
  26. Long-tailed Tits
  27. Magpie
  28. Oystercatcher – FO February 23rd.
  29. Redstart – 1 male – first I’ve ever seen – April 20th.
  30. Redwing – 24th of December – what a great bird for Christmas Eve!
  31. Robin
  32. Rook – April 30th.
  33. Siskin – 2 females on feeders, first time I’ve seen them in the garden for 3 years, March 21st.
  34. Song Thrush
  35. Sparrowhawk
  36. Starling
  37. Swallow – FO – 15th of May.
  38. Swift – FO – 15th of June.
  39. Woodpigeon
  40. Wren

22 (2 little ducks) bird species by the 18th of January.
23 birds as 28/01/16
24 birds as 30/01/16
26 birds as 08/02/16
27 birds as 18/02/16
28 birds as 19/02/16
29 birds as 23/02/16 – there have also been flocks of geese flying over at night and during the day, very high, not sure what type.
30 birds as 07/03/16
31 birds as 21/03/16
32 birds as 20/04/16
34 birds as 29/04/16
35 birds as 30/04/16
36 birds as 15/05/16
37 birds as 15/06/16
38 birds as 19/06/16
39 birds as 14/08/16
40 birds as 24/12/16

RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 30th of January 2016:

  1. Blackbird x 9
  2. Blue Tit x 3
  3. Bullfinch x 1
  4. Carrion crow x 1
  5. Coal Tit x 2
  6. Dunnock x 1
  7. Greenfinch x 6
  8. Robin x 1
  9. Song Thrush x 1
  10. Sparrowhawk x1
  11. Woodpigeon x 1

Snow on the ground and occasional showers of snow.  10.20am until 11.20am.

Odd that the usual flock of house sparrows wasn’t to be seen, there’s normally up to 30 most days, any time of day.
The Sparrowhawk was after the song thrush!

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by KiwiGav

Finches, green and bull in the garden today.

July 27, 2015 in sightings

It’s been a while since I’ve seen either, as someone that regularly changes out feeders with clean ones; I have a numerous stock of feeders people have given me over the years so I change the ones in the garden at each fill, I have hoped to get flocks of healthy greenfinches in my garden, but sadly there’s not a lot of them around any more and to see one is a highlight of this winter… erm I mean summer (don’t think it got above 12C here in Edinburgh today!) then to get 2 bullfinches as well it was pretty special.

Today’s birds:

  1. Blackbird x 1 male
  2. Bullfinch x 2, m and f
  3. Dunnock x 1
  4. Great Tit x 1 looked to be a chick
  5. Greenfinch x 1
  6. House Sparrow x 20+ including chicks very happy with that
  7. Jackdaw x 4
  8. Woodpigeon x 2

For those wondering about my dystonia I’ve been trying new medicines and looking at trying to relax more while thinking of work problems I find watching birds a great help as well as newts in the pond, fern leaves swaying in the wind and occasionally getting a loupe viewer out to view mosses, or just enjoy the carpets of moss that this cold summer has started to form, I never appreciated how much moss was a calming influence and great for people with brain issues like mine, it slows the twitching down.

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by KiwiGav

Jay in an Edinburgh garden, swift and the sparrows are back.

July 10, 2015 in sightings

Sorry it’s been so long things have gotten really bad with my dystonia and my hands have stopped working a lot, now managed to get tennis elbow from the shakes, it’s meant after work I can no longer garden, very frustrating as the weeds are getting a bit much.  But hey-ho on the plus side I sit a lot more in the garden as still as someone with a tremor can, which means more birds come out of the hedges and trees.

Lately we’ve been getting bullfinches they’ve even been using the pond to wash themselves, great to witness, the sparrows are back some with young I gather they must be a different group that were nesting elsewhere as 100% sure all the nests were abandoned when my neighbour cut the hedge back.

Love to be gardening but am taking to the smaller and macro worlds of mosses, ferns and terrariums things that I hope not to need to use my arms as much and not need to turn heavy amounts of clay.  Enough about that and onto the birds!

Bird list for 10th of July 2015:

  1. Blackbird x 1 – must have young as it’s back and forth with a beak full of RSPB Coconut shell suet treats still not managed to find a vegan alternative yet.
  2. Blue Tit x 2 – one looking a bit worse for wear after a heavy breeding season!
  3. Bullfinch x 2
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Common Buzzard x 1 over garden and 1 over Livingston
  6. Dunnock x 1
  7. Great Tit x 1
  8. Great Spotted Woodpecker x
  9. House Sparrow x 10+
  10. Jackdaw x 3
  11. Robin x 1
  12. Swifts x 1
  13. Woodpigeon x 1
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by KiwiGav

Beautiful Bullfinch shows up just before the rain.

April 24, 2015 in sightings

Weather’s starting to change, the sun has been lovely but the pond level’s been dropping about an inch per day, a mix of evaporation, dogs and birds drinking the water, and lots of splashing from both my dog and the birds. I also guess the foxes use it at night as there’s a lot of fox marking around the edges of the pond, water’s a good resource to have in a territory in these warm times.

  1. Blackbird x 1 – male
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Bullfinch x 1 – male
  4. Carrion crow x 4
  5. Coal Tit x 1
  6. Common Buzzard x 2
  7. Dunnock x 2
  8. Great Tit x 1
  9. House Sparrow x 15+ loads of pond and dust bathing.
  10. Jackdaw x 4
  11. Magpie x 2
  12. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

Crow with frog, Common Buzzards enjoy the thermals

April 22, 2015 in sightings

Just as I sat down to lunch I noticed a Carrion crow fly over head with a frog, then sit on top of my neighbours roof and devour it. Not the most pleasant thing to see whilst eating, but the crows need to live!

  1. Blue Tit x 2 – not sure if there was a young or if it was a pairing ritual, one was feeding the other.
  2. Carrion crow x 3
  3. Coal Tit x 1
  4. Common Buzzard x 2 – very high
  5. Dunnock x 2
  6. House Sparrow x 15+ – a lot using the pond, it’s so dry here in Edinburgh pond has been going down about an inch per day!
  7. Magpie x 1
  8. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

Cat after the magpie nest.

April 20, 2015 in sightings

Not a very exciting day in the garden, 2 common buzzards over head but very far off.

  1. Blackbird x 2, 1m, 1f
  2. Blue Tit x 1 sitting in the nest box tapping away.
  3. Carrion crow x 4
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Common Buzzard x 2 – a long way off
  6. Dunnock x 2
  7. House Sparrow x 15+
  8. Magpie x didn’t see any but did notice a cat trying to climb the tree where they’re nesting.
  9. Woodpigeon x 4

The cat has no collar, wondering what I should do, should I try and catch it and take it to a rescue centre?  I’ve seen it crossing the road quite dangerously and very worried for it, as well as fear for the birds.

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by KiwiGav

New record for house sparrows in my garden.

April 19, 2015 in sightings

A new record for the amount of house sparrows spotted at one time today, totally 23!  Very impressed!  However they seem to be stripping all the buds off the broom, interesting they only seem interested in the Cytisus scoparius ‘Lena’ and leave the others in the garden alone.

  1. Blackbird x 3, 2 m, 1 f.
  2. Blue Tit x 1
  3. Carrion crow x heard only
  4. Collared Dove x 1 – first in a while
  5. Dunnock x 1
  6. House Sparrow x 23
  7. Jackdaw x 1
  8. Woodpigeon x 1 – strangely sitting at the window bobbing up and down looking inside.
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by KiwiGav

Edinburgh Garden Birds for 18th of April 2015.

April 19, 2015 in sightings

Another great sunny day in Edinburgh and was fantastic to have a bullfinch couple arrive a few times through the day. Here’s the list:

  1. Blackbird x 2, m and f
  2. Blue Tit x 2 – including nest box.
  3. Bullfinch x 2, m and f
  4. Carrion crow x 3
  5. Coal Tit x 1
  6. Common Buzzard x heard only
  7. Dunnock x 3
  8. Feral Pigeon x 1
  9. House Sparrow x 15+
  10. Jackdaw x 2
  11. Magpie x 2
  12. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

Great day to be outside, decent bird list.

April 16, 2015 in sightings

Been real sore, quick list for tday as was outside catching up on study/work whilst in the sun a lot:

  1. Blackbird x 2, m & f
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Carrion crow x 4
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Common Buzzard x 1 – mobbed by gulls not sure what type.
  6. Dunnock x 2
  7. Great Tit x 1
  8. Grey Heron x 1
  9. Greenfinch x 1 – first in a while
  10. House Sparrow x 12+
  11. Magpie x 3
  12. Woodpigeon x 5