Birdlifes gone mad round here

gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
Edge of Peterborough, sprawling urban estates...its surprising the birds you see overhead. Some unusual, some just plain 'make you smile' birds.

Red Kite are suddenly regular sightings over the houses, although in reality, its probably the same one each time. 60ft up, they dont seem to give a monkeys about people, traffic, houses etc.
Green Woodpecker...see them at the side of the road all the time in the mornings, always on the verge...ants nests maybe ?
Buzzard...not common round here, but there's been a couple passing over lately.
Sat in the garden yesterday evening....hawk or raptor circling overhead. Bigger than a sparrowhawk, smaller than a buzzard. Kind of stretched half moon wings and a moderately long tail. Too high (about 150/200 ft up) to see any other distinguishing features. Bugs me when i dont know what they are :biggrin:
And every night, 7 or 8 pm...sit in the garden and watch and listen to the half dozen swallows dogfighting up and down, excitable shrill cries coming from them all. They sound as though they're having the time of their life :tongue:

If i walk 1/2 a mile to the edge of the brickpits, as the light goes ive seen a Tawny Owl silently flapping over the trees.

One dark night, in the middle of the estate there's a large field...i could just see a bird darting around...making a 'yap yap' sound like a dog :wacko: Never did work out what it was.

Oh and Magpies...they've exploded here in the last 10 years. The're everywhere. In 30 years of being raised and living in the countryside...i never saw one Magpie until 10 years ago...now theyre everywhere.

They're just the ones i can quickly recollect. Ears and eyes open...its surprising how many people have no idea whats on their doorstep.
 

Ashtrayhead

Über Member
Location
Belvedere, Kent.
That's a nice variety of birds. We get a couple of woodpeckers round here but mainly it's crows and loads and loads of those parakeets!

It's about this time of night that all the birds fly past on their way back to the woods just up the road. Hundreds of them! And if I'm lucky and up early I see them in the morning on their way off on their day out!
 

twentysix by twentyfive

Clinging on tightly
Location
Over the Hill
Ah - you are lucky to have such a good variety. I used to keep a Birds in the Garden/Overhead Book. Got up to 71 species after a few years :tongue: . Not all at once you understand. General impression these days is that the variety has reduced in recent times :wacko:

Now that bird darting about after dark making a yap yap noise. Yap, yap - could it have been wing clapping making the noise???? And the Raptor overhead - you sure it wasn't a sparrowhawk? - they come in 2 sizes. Females are bigger than males. Flap, flap glide is their flight jiz.
 
swallows or swifts? swifts scream, swallows chatter. swifts, arc shaped wings, never land (apart to nest) all brown/dark colour. swallows - white underside, reddish face, streamers on the tail.

the yapping could be an owl - what size was this nocturnal bird.

as 25x said, hawks come in two sizes - females tend to be bigger. could be a harrier though.

magpies moved into the cities years ago - after WWII. modern farming forced them from the country. jays are following them in now.
 
OP
gbb

gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
twentysix by twentyfive said:
Ah - you are lucky to have such a good variety. I used to keep a Birds in the Garden/Overhead Book. Got up to 71 species after a few years :bravo: . Not all at once you understand. General impression these days is that the variety has reduced in recent times :sad:

Now that bird darting about after dark making a yap yap noise. Yap, yap - could it have been wing clapping making the noise???? And the Raptor overhead - you sure it wasn't a sparrowhawk? - they come in 2 sizes. Females are bigger than males. Flap, flap glide is their flight jiz.
Flap flap glide...no. I have a book on hawks etc and i just cant match the wing shape etc. He ? was just circling on thermals, virtually no flapping for the 10 minutes i watched him. No splayed wingtip feathers, very clean 'stretched half moon' shape wings.

laurence said:
swallows or swifts? swifts scream, swallows chatter. swifts, arc shaped wings, never land (apart to nest) all brown/dark colour. swallows - white underside, reddish face, streamers on the tail.

the yapping could be an owl - what size was this nocturnal bird.

as 25x said, hawks come in two sizes - females tend to be bigger. could be a harrier though.

magpies moved into the cities years ago - after WWII. modern farming forced them from the country. jays are following them in now.
Swifts then. Nice to see you Laurence :evil:

Fnaar said:
Mrs Higgins from number 32?
:becool::biggrin:
 
gbb said:
Buzzard...not common round here, but there's been a couple passing over lately.
Buzzards seem to have declined here in the last year or so :biggrin:. Were common as muck flying over mid Sussex two years ago, used to see them on nearly every lunchtime spin from work. But now it's mostly kestrels - again.

If i walk 1/2 a mile to the edge of the brickpits, as the light goes ive seen a Tawny Owl silently flapping over the trees.
laurence said:
the yapping could be an owl - what size was this nocturnal bird.
..but I saw a tawny owl in broad daylight - mid morning - a few weeks ago. At Barcombe, perched on a stone wall under a yew tree - quite a shady place, so I suppose it decided it was OK to come out.
 

Bromptonaut

Rohan Man
Location
Bugbrooke UK
Certainly more Buzzards in Northants than there were 20 years ago. Martins are curently nesting under the eaves and seem to have avoided eviction by sparrows as happened in the last two years.

Swifts nest further into the village but hunt round my way. One however was repeatedly trying to get under the roof apex the house opposite - not behaviour seen before and I suspect it was ill. They're already tailchasing and screaming which suggests fledged young. First of the migrants to leave they'll be gone in in lee than a month.

Also seeing increased nunbers of seed feeders. Goldfinch don't seem to visit the garden but are assertively proclaiming territory from the roof top. Need to try and source decent Niger seed feeder.

Most unusual recent sighting was what I'm convinced were Ravens. Big black birds circling and thermalling but occasionally rolling and diving. Occasial aaarrrk call. Group of about four gradually climbing and progressing east - west; on passage not stopping. I've always thought of them as the 'vultures' of fell country but apparantly they're repopoulating the lowlands.

Oh and far too many randy woodpigeons!!!
 
OP
gbb

gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
Which brings me to another bird matter...seagulls divebombing :biggrin:
A few weeks ago, one of the girls at work, her car was PLASTERED with seagull poo....all the cars around (within 2 or 3 ft) were clean, but hers must have been hit 10 times or so. Great bit hits as well.

Last week, one of the other girls was sat in the carpark at break....a seagull poo'd all over her, on her sandwich, in her hair and on her clothes :smile:.

Ive just walked into the other carpark...and one of the cars has about 20 bird splats all over it. The shiny new car next to it is as clean as a whistle. I shall of course tell the owner it's the Scotland sticker on the back that's to blame :biggrin:

They're nesting on top of the building, lots of activity. That'll be something to do with it. But multiple hits on a inanimate car :smile:
 
OP
gbb

gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
laurence said:
swallows or swifts? swifts scream, swallows chatter. swifts, arc shaped wings, never land (apart to nest) all brown/dark colour. swallows - white underside, reddish face, streamers on the tail.

the yapping could be an owl - what size was this nocturnal bird.

as 25x said, hawks come in two sizes - females tend to be bigger. could be a harrier though.

magpies moved into the cities years ago - after WWII. modern farming forced them from the country. jays are following them in now.
I see where you're coming from, but this one (in very poor light) was fast moving, almost darting around and lightly built. Put me in mind of a wader perhaps.
 

Fnaar

Smutmaster General
Location
Thumberland
I still haven't identified this call... if anyone can help... I THINK the bird has other tunes going on, but not sure... it's just this little sequence that stands out... not heard it before this yeasr, but hearing it every day at the moment... morning and evening.
 
If you can't pin down a bird call, call it 'starling', because starlings'll sing anything - including other birds' songs...
 
Bromptonaut said:
Swifts nest further into the village but hunt round my way. One however was repeatedly trying to get under the roof apex the house opposite - not behaviour seen before and I suspect it was ill. They're already tailchasing and screaming which suggests fledged young. First of the migrants to leave they'll be gone in in lee than a month.

Most unusual recent sighting was what I'm convinced were Ravens. Big black birds circling and thermalling but occasionally rolling and diving. Occasial aaarrrk call. Group of about four gradually climbing and progressing east - west; on passage not stopping. I've always thought of them as the 'vultures' of fell country but apparantly they're repopoulating the lowlands.

Oh and far too many randy woodpigeons!!!
the swift could be trying to get into a nest hole that's been covered up. they are very site faithful - which accounts for some of the decline. if someone does DIY and covers the nest entrance they are screwed. some of the screaming is to find if nest sites are occupied too - they scream and if there's a scream back they know it is. if you have swifts coming in and checking nest sites it could be worth getting a nest box.

Ravens are making a comeback. it's been kept a bit quiet for fear of persecution, but they are starting to get established now.

Woodpigeons are driving out feral pigeons in some places, especially cities. not good news for some birds of prey as a woody is too large for them.

as for the yapping... most waders i can think of are a bit bulky... most peep too (well, oysties, redshanks, lapwings). is it wader territory?
 
Top Bottom