The title comes from Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland – in the chapter headed A Mad Tea-Party, Alice tries to join the tea-party but the Hare and the Hatter insist that there is no room, to Alice it seems as though there are plenty of spare seats. She finds out by the end of the chapter why the empty seats and tea time, are so important.
Watching the birds that come to the bird table and feeder, I sometimes wonder if there is some complex protocol. Perhaps on the lines of one of those ‘Logic Puzzles’ where Jane wears a yellow T-shirt, doesn’t wear glasses, doesn’t have a moustache, is blonde but has long hair. So who get’s the peanuts and who has to put up with the seed feeder?
The Blackbird is definitely the bossiest and he definitely has it in for the Robin. Yet he seems to be on the best of terms with the Dunnock. Sparrows and Chaffinches come and go with complete indifference to the other occupants of the bird table. The Wood Pigeon, at first, shied away from the Stock Dove. I think he went home and told his wife what had happened – and had a good telling off – because he returned a short while later and threw his weight around in no uncertain terms.
The Great Tits think they own the whole garden and swagger about the place – but a gaggle of Long Tailed (smaller) Tits will crowd them off even the fat balls.
Here we have, from left to right, a Great Tit, a Coal Tit, a Blue Tit and a Sparrow. Strange company. Times must be hard.