Long ago and far away, we lived in a land where The Tits came to the bird feeder and threw out all the seed that wasn’t exactly to their liking. The Blackbird, The Robin, but most of all The Pigeon approved of this behaviour. It gave them an opportunity to share in the bounty that the seed feeder provided. Not that The Pigeon hadn’t tried to perch on the silly little plastic thing that stuck out of the feeder at a convenient hight, if you were a blue tit – but just didn’t do it for a plump well fed wood pigeon. Not only was the perch in the wrong place but the entire feeder tended to swing away from you and tip you off, just when you thought you’d made touch-down. Nothing to do with being very large and very plump, of course.
In our bright, shiny new world, we haven’t seen that many pigeons about feeding on the ground. This may or may not be related to the apparently limitless supply of foxes that this location provides – we saw one the other day, at about 4p.m., run across our garden with a large expensive chicken gripped firmly between its jaws.
We do have a couple of blackbirds and a robin or two but when we noticed that the mess made by the tits was being tidied up very nicely we were surprised that they where prepared to put in that amount of work.
Then Jackie saw this fellow. He is very, very shy about being seen – obviously a foreign aristocrat down on his luck and forced to go scrabbling through other peoples’ discards to survive.