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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

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

Lots of garden work in neighbours means few birds.

April 13, 2015 in sightings

Been either sore or busy last few days, Saturday didn’t manage to see any birds then sunday spent most of the day at V Deep Indian, Leith, Edinburgh Ruairidh and Hardeep’s restaurant and only spotted a robin, wasn’t worth posting a new post for just 1 bird.

Sadly our neighbours have been clearing up their garden and the birds have been put off visiting by how much work was going on, a few small trees were removed and it looks so bare now.

  1. Blue Tit x 1 – going into nest box with nesting material
  2. Carrion crow x 2
  3. Feral Pigeon x 1
  4. House Sparrow x 6
  5. Magpie x 1
  6. Woodpigeon x 2
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by KiwiGav

A very quiet day in the garden.

April 10, 2015 in sightings

Was nice and sunny in the morning, rainy and cloudy in the afternoon, not a lot birds around:

  1. Blackbird x 1, m
  2. Blue Tit x 1 – didn’t see it going into the nest box today.
  3. Carrion crow x 3
  4. Dunnock x 3
  5. Feral Pigeon x 1
  6. House Sparrow x 11
  7. Jackdaw x 2
  8. Magpie x 2
  9. Robin x 1
  10. Woodpigeon x 1
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Common Buzzards seen, but no Osprey or Swallows.

April 9, 2015 in sightings

I was in a fair bit of pain today and didn’t really get out of bed before midday, instead worked from bed and finally managed to have time to finish Eric Hosking’s fantastic book: An Eye for a Bird to have been to as many great spots as Eric would just be amazing, to see all those birds on top would blow my mind, sadly having dystonia means sitting in a hide all nice and still is out of my control and why, when I could still walk, I was a professional landscape photographer rather than a bird and wildlife photographer (my dream).  I am now concentrating on setting up to be a plant and still life photographer – 3rd choice, but still to have had the chance to take some great photos of wild places and the occasional bird and wildlife has been amazing.

After midday I went outside to see if the Osprey was anywhere to be seen as there were more reports on Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning, nothing, also had friends report swallows starting to show. Nothing here yet.

  1. Blackbird x 1m
  2. Blue Tit x 2, both flying in and out of nestbox, really sounds like they’ve got young.
  3. Carrion crow x 2
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Common Buzzard x 2
  6. Dunnock x 3
  7. Feral Pigeon x 1
  8. Great Tit x 2
  9. House Sparrow x 7- loads more in hedge as ever.
  10. Jackdaw x 2
  11. Magpie x 2 – seem to be nesting right outside my bedroom window.
  12. Robin x 1 – sitting on top of neighbours hawthorn singing loudly.
  13. Woodpigeon x 1

Thought I’d just brighten up this post with a Rainbow Lorikeet, I was working on a project I think it was called Nightscape – it was commissioned by an art college in Sydney to try and show different styles of photography that they taught, anyway I was often out photographing from 9pm until 4am and then these fun birds would turn up at 5am…  I couldn’t be mad with only getting an hours sleep if I was lucky and instead would spend 2 or 3 hours photographing them most days during processing time on photos.

Drenched Rainbow Lorikeet

Drenched Rainbow Lorikeet

Rainbow Lorikeet

Rainbow Lorikeet

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by KiwiGav

What a wonderfully sunny day, 6 common buzzards

April 8, 2015 in sightings

There’s an Osprey over the Lothian area, I’ve been keeping an eye out for it, but no luck so far. Whilst looking into the sky I did manage to spot 6 common buzzards circling and occasionally fighting in the air. Here’s the rest of my list:

  1. Blackbird x 2, 1m, 1f.
  2. Blue Tit x 2 – one coming out of the nestbox.
  3. Carrion crow x 2
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Common Buzzard x 6 flying high.
  6. Dunnock x 3
  7. Feral Pigeon x 1
  8. Great Tit x 2
  9. House Sparrow x 20+ more in the hedge! I managed to spot 14 having a dust bath at once and then 6 on feeders at the same time.
  10. Jackdaw x 2
  11. Magpie x 2
  12. Robin x 2
  13. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

14 species of birds in the garden today.

April 6, 2015 in sightings

Another amazing sunny day, I heard reports it hit 17C here in Edinburgh today, not bad for April, it was indeed very nice!

  1. Blackbird x 1 male
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Carrion crow x 2
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Collared Dove x 2 – first in a while.
  6. Common Buzzard x 2
  7. Dunnock x 3
  8. Feral Pigeon x 2, 1 was white dove.
  9. Great Tit x 1
  10. House Sparrow x 7+ more in hedge.
  11. Jackdaw x 2
  12. Magpie x 2
  13. Robin x 1
  14. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

What an amazing sunny day in Edinburgh!

April 5, 2015 in sightings

I managed to sit outside almost all day today, actually slightly sun burnt!  I noticed Great Tits taking hair from the RSPB Terracotta Apple which I was very happy with that.  The Blue Tits are going back and forth to the nestbox, not sure if they’re feeding or building the nest, but there was a lot of tapping on the entrance hole of the box.

One of the most amazing things was there were 15 house sparrows having dust baths, the sound was amazing, it’s right under a privet hedge where I just put nasturtiums as the beds need a lot more work than I can physically do at the moment and the soil is rubbish, but I want something in there with a bit of colour and wildlife benefit, I’ll be leaving a bit more ground bare this year though to let the sparrows dust bath.

  1. Blackbird x heard only
  2. Blue Tit x 2 – nestbox action.
  3. Carrion crow x 2
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Common Buzzard x 1 – very very high.
  6. Dunnock x 3, once again the mating game was on.
  7. Feral Pigeon x 2, 1 white dove.
  8. Great Tit x 2 – taking hair for nesting.
  9. House Sparrow x 15+
  10. Jackdaw x 2
  11. Magpie x 2
  12. Robin x 1
  13. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

What a wonderfully sunny day in Edinburgh

April 2, 2015 in sightings

The common buzzards were realy taking advantage of the thermals created by the warm sun today.

  1. Blackbird x 1
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Carrion crow x 2
  4. Common Buzzard x 2 using the spring thermals to soar high.
  5. Dunnock x 3
  6. Feral Pigeon x flock of racing pigeons flew past, what a whoosh, I thought the sparrowhawk was back!
  7. Great Tit x 1
  8. House Sparrow x 17 – new top number and some collecting nesting material, may be more soon!
  9. Jackdaw x 2
  10. Magpie x 2 – collecting moss from the lawn
  11. Robin x 1
  12. Woodpigeon x 3
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by KiwiGav

Trip near Edinburgh airport.

March 23, 2015 in sightings

My wife has been helping me with the garden, as I’ve not been able to do more than 5 minutes weeding if that.  I really love Feijoas a South American fruit that’s popular in New Zealand but very hard to grow in the UK (there is one in Kensington Palace gardens that fruits very well, but I’m always there at the wrong time of year, would love to get cuttings from that plant!), so I’ve been doing a bit of reading and been informed that giving them a good supply of horse manure at this time of year may create fruit later in the year.  2014 I only managed to get 1 fruit off 6 plants, but am more hopeful for 2015.  Anyway my wife mentions she knows someone that goes horse riding and they’d happily let her walk around the paddock and clear up after the horses.  I went with her in the car to give directions to the fields and on a glorious sunny day I got to sit and watch the birds in the area, here’s what I managed to see:

  1. Collard Doves
  2. Feral Pigeons
  3. White Doves (don’t think this is a species, but talking to the people there it seems they’ve been there for decades always white with no other markings of pigeon amongst them, quite a sight to see in the bright sun.)
  4. House Sparrows – around 50 would be a good guess!
  5. Blue Tits
  6. Great Tits
  7. Woodpigeons

There were probably a lot more birds but I couldn’t walk the hedges to check them, was just great to see!

Separate post for the garden birds.