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by KiwiGav

2018 Edinburgh, Scotland Garden Bird List

January 1, 2018 in sightings

It’s time now for the start of my 2018 Garden bird list 2017 showed most of the common British garden birds with a total of 34 birds, unlike 2016 where I had a few more unusual birds for a city garden and a total of 40.

Sadly Dystonia will mainly have me stuck at home again I am studying horticulture at the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh to learn more about making my garden wildlife friendly.  I may try and do a separate RBGE bird list as the gardens have a great diversity of bird species there and are fantastic to watch.

Previous year lists for my Edinburgh Garden
2017 Edinburgh Garden Bird List
2016 Edinburgh Garden Bird List

Once again for 2018 I’ll be using bird food from RSPB.

 

The 2018 Edinburgh, Scotland garden bird list:

  1. Blackbird – Jan 1st – first bird of the year
  2. Black-headed gull – March 4th – FO
  3. Blackcap – Jan 2nd
  4. Blue Tit – Jan 1st
  5. Bullfinch – Feb 3rd
  6. Carrion Crow – Jan 1st
  7. Chaffinch – March 3rd
  8. Coal Tit – Jan 2nd
  9. Collared Dove – Jan 3rd
  10. Dunnock – Jan 1st
  11. Feral Pigeon – Jan 25th
  12. Fieldfare – Jan 18th
  13. Goldcrest – Jan 13th
  14. Goldfinch – Jan 3rd
  15. Common Buzzard – March 7th – FO
  16. Great Tit – Jan 1st
  17. Grey Heron – March 2nd – FO, lots of snow.
  18. Greenfinch – Jan 16th
  19. House Sparrow  – Jan 1st
  20. Jackdaw – Jan – 8th
  21. Kestrel – Feb 22nd – FOx2, only second time I’ve seen Kestrels over the garden.
  22. Lesser black-backed gull – March 4th
  23. Long-tailed Tit – Jan 2nd
  24. Magpie – Jan 2nd
  25. Oystercatcher – Jan 19th – FO
  26. Redwing – March 3rd – snow on the ground.
  27. Robin – Jan 1st
  28. Rook – April 21st
  29. Song Thrush – March 4th – snow still on ground.
  30. Sparrowhawk – Jan 13th
  31. Starlings – Jan 7th
  32. Wren – Jan 10th
  33. Woodpigeon – Jan 1st

8 Species as of January 1st 2018.
12 Species as of January 2nd 2018.
14 Species as of January 3rd 2018.
15 Species as of January 7th 2018.
16 Species as of January 8th 2018.
17 Species as of January 10th 2018.
19 Species as of January 13th 2018.
20 Species as of January 16th 2018.
21 Species as of January 18th 2018.
22 Species as of January 19th 2018.
23 Species as of January 25th 2018.
24 Species as of February 3rd 2018.
25 Species as of February 22nd 2018.
26 Species as of March 2nd 2018.
28 Species as of March 3rd 2018.
31 Species as of March 4th 2018.
32 Species as of March 7th 2018.
33 Species as of April 21st 2018.

If you’re on Twitter my user name is: @ApteryxGav – a great hashtag to follow is #my200birdyear thanks to BirdWatchingMag.
Or instagram: @ApteryxGav – It’s mainly plant photos with a few birds.

I’m currently working on a gardening website that will hopefully be up and running later in 2018, it will obviously have a fair bit about wildlife, and the book Sammy The Shrew for sale which is raising money for charities.

2018 RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch results, Saturday 27th of January.
A very windy day, grey and over cast, yet warm. The first crocus of the year started showing today.

  1. Blackbird x 7
  2. Blue Tit x 1
  3. Coal tit x 2
  4. Collared Doves x 2
  5. Dunnock x 1
  6. Great tit x 3
  7. House Sparrow x 17
  8. Woodpigeon x 1

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. Fieldfare – Dec 29th
  13. Goldcrest – Jan 7th
  14. Goldfinch – February 19th
  15. Great Tit – Jan 1st
  16. Greenfinch – Jan 1st
  17. Grey Heron – April 13th – FO
  18. House Sparrow – Jan 1st
  19. Jackdaw – Jan 3rd
  20. Kestrel – May 31st – FO – think this is the first I’ve seen over my garden.
  21. Long-tailed tit – October 14th
  22. Magpie – Jan 2nd
  23. Oystercatcher – July 13th – FO
  24. Redwing – Jan 30th
  25. Robin – Jan 1st
  26. Rook – March 23rd
  27. Siskin – April 28th
  28. Song Thrush – Jan 4th
  29. Sparrowhawk – Jan 7th
  30. Starling – Jan 1st
  31. Stock Dove – Jan 5th
  32. Swift – June 18th – 3 days later than last year, I haven’t seen a single swallow this year.
  33. Woodpigeon – Jan 1st
  34. 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.
34 Species as of December 29th 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.

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!

by KiwiGav

My first Water rail – videos from Inverleith Pond Edinburgh

February 5, 2015 in sightings

As I can no longer hold a heavy DSLR I’m trying out a lightweight video camera and currently I’m enjoying it.  First up a few birds I saw today, all but the common buzzard and fieldfare are firsts for the year as I’ve hardly left the house.  There were many other birds seen but these in the list were the new ones for the year and/or rarities for me:

  1. Common Buzzard x 2
  2. Coot
  3. Fieldfare
  4. Moorhen
  5. Mute Swan
  6. Oystercatchers x 7
  7. Pied wagtail
  8. Redshank x 2
  9. Redwing
  10. Song Thrush
  11. Water rail – first time ever!

The 4 videos I’ve currently uploaded, my favourite first – less sounds of my crutches and my dodgy zooms and pans.  Lot for me to learn and see if my dystonia spasms and shakes are ok with video work.

Water Rail preening 2 – Inverleith Pond – Edinburgh – 5th of February 2015. 

Water Rail – Inverleith Pond – Edinburgh – 5th of February 2015 – WBIST 

Water Rail – Inverleith Pond – Edinburgh – 5th of February 2015 – WBIST 

Water Rail preening – Inverleith Pond – Edinburgh – 5th of February 2015.
I do like the splashing about near the start of this video.

by KiwiGav

First Fieldfare of the year and Water rail Inverleith Park Edinburgh.

February 4, 2015 in sightings

Just a quick update today, I managed to get outside for a bit and saw a fieldfare in my neighbours garden, first for the year.

There’s also been great sightings of a Water rail at the pond in Inverleith Park, just near the Edinburgh botanic gardens, I’m hoping that I may be able to go and see it on Friday if it’s still there, I’ve never managed to spot one in the past.

by KiwiGav

Not a bad list for 1 hour of watching on RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch

January 25, 2014 in sightings

Day 1 of the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch, I’ll do another hour count tomorrow and see what shows, then submit the best day… Or does anyone know if we can submit both days?  Would that mess things up for them?

  1. Blackbird x 8
  2. Blue Tit x 3
  3. Carrion crow x 2 – fly over, not in the RSPB garden list.
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Dunnock x 1
  6. Feral Pigeon x 1
  7. Fieldfare x 1
  8. House Sparrow x 12
  9. Jackdaw x 2
  10. Starlings x heard only – not in the RSPB hour.
  11. Woodpigeon x 1 – during the watch.  2 later in the day.

by KiwiGav

A few hours in the hide, great views of birds but no photos.

January 13, 2014 in sightings

Couldn’t get out with the hide until after I’d finished work today, although the house sparrows were jumping on the feeder as I was setting up the hide and didn’t seem to care I was there, once I’d settled in they hid in the dogwood at it’s thickest parts.  The blue tits showed well again and a robin very briefly, but nothing overly photogenic as the light was rubbish, was still great to be in close to the birds.  I left it out for another 2 hours after I’d got out of it, birds were wandering around very close to it, hopefully the regulars are getting used to it.  My garden bird list for today, obviously not as much time as weekend to watch, but still decent.

  1. Blackbird x 3
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Carrion crow x 1
  4. Dunnock x 1
  5. Fieldfare x 1
  6. Great Tit x 1
  7. Greater Spotted Woodpecker x 1 – whist driving near Murrayfield Edinburgh
  8. House Sparrow x 15+
  9. Jackdaw x 1
  10. Robin x 1
  11. Starlings x 20+
  12. Stock Dove x 1
  13. Woodpigeon x 2

by KiwiGav

A short time to watch, very few birds spotted.

January 12, 2014 in sightings

Sadly my ankles were so sore I didn’t get out of bed until midday and by then most of the birds had gone.  I’d hoped to be out with the hide and camera today, but instead spent most of the afternoon fixing a friends laptop.

  1. Blackbird x 3
  2. Blue Tit x 2
  3. Fieldfare x 1
  4. House Sparrow x 1
  5. Starlings x 50+ – a great site to see as they flocked before they went to roost in a monkey puzzle tree across the road from my house.
  6. Woodpigeon x 2

This photo was from last year, but it’s the tree that the starlings roost in over night, this was the biggest flock I’d seen fly into it.

Monkey Puzzle tree silhouette

Monkey Puzzle tree silhouette – you can also see the silhouette of a woodpigeon just to the left.

by KiwiGav

Chair hide photos of blue tits and garden bird list for January 11th 2014.

January 11, 2014 in sightings

I got out in the back garden to try out my new seat hide – Riverside Outdoor Camo Pop Up Chair Hide Quick Erect Decoying Shooting Photography Tent Waterproof, not bad at all, really have to work on tying down the front flaps though as they kept getting caught in the breeze.  I sadly made some camera errors at the start, still in landscape photography mode and missed some nice shots of a fieldfare, I started to get better but by the time I was back into bird photography mode there were just the blue tits around, they did look good against the red of the dogwood (not sure which cornus it is, probably Sibirica).

The one thing I really noticed about being in the hide was the sounds of birds all around, there are two side flaps but I had to close them as I found myself looking out them and thinking “I’m missing that shot, whilst nothing’s in front of me”.   I didn’t get as close as I’d like but the birds were suspicious of the hide, due to my mild cerebral palsy I do shake and twitch a fair bit and I think this was being passed through the seat to the hide as it’s all one structure which may be a problem.  I’ll stick at it and see how I get on and share more pics in the future.

  1. Blackbird x 3
  2. Blue Tit x 3
  3. Carrion crow x 1
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Chaffinch x 1
  6. Dunnock x 2
  7. Fieldfare x 1
  8. Great Tit x 2
  9. House Sparrow x 10+
  10. Jackdaw x 1
  11. Magpie x 2
  12. Robin x 1
  13. Starlings x 15+
  14. Woodpigeon x 4

This first photo is uncropped, the second is cropped but only taking off the tops and bottoms of the shot.

Blue Tit on Dogwood, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Blue Tit on Dogwood, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Blue Tit

Blue Tit on red dogwood, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.

by KiwiGav

A good list on another calm day

January 5, 2014 in sightings

Not a bad day today, including the most blue tits I’ve see altogether in the garden:

  1. Blackbird x 2
  2. Blue Tit x 4
  3. Coal Tit x 1
  4. Dunnock x 1
  5. Fieldfare x 1
  6. Great Tit x 1
  7. House Sparrow x 5+
  8. Jackdaw x 2
  9. Robin x 1
  10. Starlings x 25
  11. Woodpigeon x 2