My Saturday Bird this week is a young Eurasian Blue Tit.
The photo raises a couple of interesting points. The yellow plumage shows it is a young bird hatched from an egg in the spring. It has only been out of the nest for a couple of months. The bird has a ring on its leg which means that it was probably ringed while in the nest.
I did some research and the closest location I could find for the bird to be ringed was three miles away in a straight line. That means that this bird has already travelled a considerable distance in the short time since it left the nest.
The other interesting point is the birds activity. It’s pecking open an Oriental Poppy seed pod to get at the seeds inside. I had seen and photographed adult birds doing this previously but not young birds. So did this bird learn how to do this by watching an adult or is it instinctive behaviour?
This week Throwback Thursday is traveling back 13 years to August 2007.
This is a female Common Merganser with young on Lake Huron near the Long Dock in Southampton, Ontario, Canada. This was a very late brood, the young wouldn’t have long to grow and prepare to head south for the winter.
Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire on the 3rd June 1987. Yes I know I’m a day late.
This is the end of the story of the nesting Eurasian Blue Tits photographed using a specially constructed nestbox in a Cheshire garden. The previous two Throwback Thursday posts were also detailing this nestbox.
The ninth young Eurasian Blue Tit about to take its first flight leaving just two young in the nest.
The eleventh youngster couldn’t get up the nerve to leave and spent the day in the nestbox being fed by an adult occasionally. The following morning one of the adults was outside calling to encourage it to leave, which it did.
This is a follow-up of sorts to my Throwback Thursday post yesterday. That showed how cramped it was getting inside this nestbox.
After posting it occurred to me that I should post a photo showing how the adults keep the nest clean. While in the nest the young produce fecal sacs. These are droppings encased in a gelatinous sac allowing the adults to carry it out of the nestbox and drop it some distance away.
The young stick their bottoms in the air as a sign to an adult that they’re about to produce one.
Interestingly, when I captioned the slides in 1987 the reference books I used spelled it as faecal sac but the accepted spelling nowadays is fecal.