Saturday, 18 February 2017

Frog Spawn

Following the arrival of frogs two days ago - there are now 6 clumps of frog spawn in our pond.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Frogs return to my pond

I awoke this morning to loud croaking chorus from our pond heralding the frogs return following hibernation.
The pond is just outside the conservatory window and the frogs notice the smallest movement at the window - but definitely 13 frogs at the moment

Courtship in full swing as they are already jostling to form pairs.

Males and females common frogs look the same but there are a few clues you can look for.

The female common frogs are often a bit larger than the male and the female has a darker throat, while the male’s throat is often white.

Monday, 13 February 2017

Goldcrest visiting my bird feeder

A pleasant surprise visitor to my bird feeder - a Goldcrest. Smaller than a wren, along with the firecrest, the goldcrest is our smallest bird.
I noticed the goldcrest in the branches of the buddleia and it eventually came down onto the feeding tray of my bird feeder picking up tiny bits of food that had been dropped by sparrows and tits feeding on the fat balls.

The goldcrests plumage is olive above and buff white below, with darker wings displaying two white wing bars and an orange or yellow crown stripe flanked by a black edge.
Adult males have an orange or orange-yellow crown stripe, in the female the stripe is yellow. In the photographs the head stripe appears to be orange so this goldcrest is probably a male. Looking at the video the crest looks more yellow - but maybe due to poor light and damp windows.

After clearing up all the scraps from the feeding tray, the goldcrest flew back up into the buddleia and after a few seconds surprised me by flying onto the birdfeeder and eating tiny bits from the fat balls.

Goldcrests are largely insectivores so I was surprised to see it  on the bird feeder

In winter I have observed the occasional goldcrest foraging for food in the evergreen passion flower in our back garden but never seen on the bird feeder before.