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Mixed flocks and a lot of snow

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24th January 2013

Has anyone noticed like me the increased number of birds, but more interesting for us bird feeders, the diversity of birds attending the garden since the snow started falling?

Many of our familiar species, tits, finches and thrushes included, all migrate. Some hundreds of miles, others less but some travel incredible distances all to find food and just like you and I, in a strange town, we all tend to look for something familiar (the secret of McDonalds?).

As such, the birds tend to flock together and all sorts of different species you’d not expect to see together suddenly all communally seek out sources of food, such as our garden feeders and tables, and share it for mutual gain. In fact, research has shown that rather than losing out by sharing food, the benefit of many eyes keeping a watch out allows more feeding to take place in less time. Surely a benefit as food is disappearing under a deep covering of snow!

Anyway science, research and survival aside, I’m more than happy to see wonderful birds like fieldfares, buntings, bramblings and redpolls join my usual visitors and the cost being an extra bag of food is more than offset by the joy they bring me.

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow 🙂

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