Friday, 4 September 2015

Miles away

Our holiday in Sheffield perhaps could have been better timed when the news filtered through that 7 Bee eaters had been seen in Shetland. Nothing we could have done about that as we are over 600 miles south of Shetland

Although we have done no bird watching as such you cannot help but notice the birdlife around you. The first was a buzzard coming through Scotland, at a place where we regularly see them. On one of our stops the cheery Robin sang out loud, a bit unusual as they don't normally start again until late September, we do miss their song

 A walk in a local park produced a number of Nuthatch, Gt Spotted woodpeckers and a variety of tits including Blue, Gt, Long Tailed & Coal and a few Chaffinch but only one Greenfinch

On one pond a pair of Little Grebe collected food for a young grebe, but all the Mallard are now in eclipse causing confusion among a few people who couldn't identify them.

Flocks of Goldfinch seem to be everywhere, they are always a delight to see and hear. In one garden 12 have been visiting on a regular basis much to the delight of the local Sparrowhawk.

Numbers of sparrow and starling are very low in the gardens we have visited, before we left Sheffield we had no Starling for the last 3 years, and we only had sparrows because we had a bush- other neighbours had no bushes and no sparrows.

Its always great to see Butterflies and although we have seen a few Painted Ladies and Red Admiral's in Shetland they are much more abundant in Sheffield as you would expect. Sheffield is the greenest city in England , but it's noisy, busy and smelly unlike Shetland

However Wildlife has to adapt and one that has is the Fox which is doing very well. Urban foxes are often in a better state than rural foxes, plenty of thrown away food and lots of places to construct an earth, in the few days we have been here we have seen six.

Jackdaws are always good to see and even these have moved into Urban areas, these two birds on an area of wasteland.

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