Friday, January 18

When is a blackbird not a black bird?


Just one of the many blackbirds flocking into our garden at the moment. I've never seen so many in the same place at the same time.

It's a sign that the birds are struggling in the cold conditions.

Many are also using our pond as an emergency water supply for drinking and bathing as the bird baths are freezing up very soon after we thaw them out.


Copyright: Original post from Our Plot at Green Lane Allotments http://glallotments.blogspot.co.uk/ author S Garrett

16 comments:

  1. "All Blackbirds are black birds, but not all black birds are Blackbirds." QED.

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    1. Wrong! Blackbirds can be brown birds - in fact there are also white blackbirds but I've never seen one!

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  2. It's the same here, loads of blackbirds about. I'm keeping all the feeders well stocked.

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    1. Martyn's just been popping some buggy nibbles on the bird table, Jo and the blackbirds and robins were watching from all over the garden ready to swoop when he came in.

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  3. Yes we have a few, I buy apples & pears for them. I will need to stock up tonight.

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    1. You certainly will, Jo. I'm going to make some fat cake this afternoon

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  4. I didn't know that female blackbirds have brownish plumage! Probably I saw female blackbirds many times but wasn't aware that they were really blackbirds.

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    1. Female blackbirds can be mistaken for thrushes Dewberry although thrushes have much more distinctive speckles. Young blackbirds are brown too wit the male getting the black plumage as he matures.

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    2. I've checked it, indeed it's quite similar.

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  5. Very good Sue! I thought I was going to see a partial albino – you caught me out. Lovely shots – I think the females are really quite pretty.

    As you know, I’ve got my pond pump running for the first time (at this time of year) and I’m looking forward to seeing if the regular female GSW decides to pop by for a drink – bet I’m not watching if she does. She’s very shy. Enjoy your bird visitors over the weekend – wishing you new winter visitors to your garden :-D

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    1. I am watching out for siskins Shirley - we had them the year before last. No albinos here but we have had one with white streaks.

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  6. Sharp increase in all bird activity at our feeders. We've also had some 'brownish' male Blackies (but they're definitely not females - have the yellow male beak) and last year a semi-piebald one.

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    1. The brownish ones with yellow beaks could be last years juvenile males, Bilbo as they start brown and then generally go black gradually. It often start with black flight feathers on the wings and tail. It can take til March for them to get full adult plumage.

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    2. Thanks Sue, that is what I thought but wasn't sure.

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  7. We've had several brown blackbirds in our garden too, looking very fat, all fluffed up against the cold.

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    1. Ours are becoming a bit cheeky, Janet and when the supplies run down sit around the garden as if waiting for a top up

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