This is the journal of my endeavours to grow a range of fruit, veg and flowers from seed, grow organically, and my attempts to create a personal paradise with 1/2 acre of maintained gardens and 1/2 acre wild meadows. Northern Ireland's average daily high temperatures are 18 °C (64 °F) in July and 6 °C (43 °F) in January. Soil type: Clay

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Bird Watch

I took part in the RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) bird watch this weekend. The task was to spend an hour watching for birds and forwarding the results to the RSPB. I thought it would be fun to take part. I keep a bird feeder filled with peanuts over the Winter and the birds seem to take turns by bird type i.e. the chaffinch eat, then the sparrows, etc (with the occasional bird argument over who's turn it is). I spotted 1 goldfinch, 3 great tits, 1 robin, 8 chaffinch, 8 house sparrows. Further from the house: 7 blackbird, 9 wood pigeon and 2 magpies.
Above: Goldfinch.
Above: An action shot of a great tit and sparrows.
Great Tit 
 A little robin followed me around the garden over the weekend.
I spotted the first of the flowering snowdrops this weekend...
and more snowdrops pushing up through the ground. I also found quite a number of bulbs laying on top of the ground like the one pictured in the middle of this clump so I replanted about 30 bulbs.
I prepared one of my beds and dug in some homemade compost & manure; the birds enjoyed this task. One of my last jobs at the weekend was moving some redcurrant plants to a new location. So much more to do before Spring!


  1. Fabulous phots - especially the Goldfinch. I didn't get round to doing the Big Garden Birdwatch, but I did notice a Redwing in my garden the other day - a type I have never seen before.

  2. My favourite is the robin...we do have them in Australia but they are not the robins of the story books of childhood.

  3. Kelly, great bird photography. Your weather must be warming. Your picture of the gold finch is stunning, so perfect. We have gold finches here. We put out black thistle seed for them. Right now they are olive colored, but in the spring they turn bright yellow and black. I'll take their picture so that you can see the difference. We will be participating in the Back Yard bird count here in February. Check out the web site: cheers. ann

  4. It sounds like you had a good selection of birds in your garden to report back to the RSPB. I had intended to take part too, but found I didn't get time in the end.

  5. You have been digging already?!We don't go into our allotments for the month of Jan so are looking forward to getting stuck in soon!

  6. you have been busy! I love the bird photos. Spring is on the way!