Saturday, 24 May 2008


No, not a seabird colony moved inland but the blasted Jackdaws who have decided to call Bag End 'home'. Initially I was pleased to see a pair of Jackdaw with 4 young and have been trying (unsuccessfully ) to photograph them together for a couple of weeks.

Unfortunately I forgot that all corvids love peanuts; at our old house we had a pair of Jays who were a delight to watch on one of the feeders as they filled their crops with nuts and flew off into the wood next door. However, six full size Jackdaws get through a lot more food than two Jays and the occasional youngster.

Arguing with each other at the peanut feeders (found a use for one of the cherry tree trunks!)

Checking out the "all you can eat Bag End buffet"

They have managed to half-destroy a new peanut feeder after knocking it to the ground but the final straw is the taste they have developed for the Soft-Billed Mix I put out for Blackbirds, Thrush and Robins. If they kept to their own food I wouldn't mind but I object when they nick everyone else's.

This was yesterday's attempt to keep them out. The combined weight of three birds just about knocked it down.

This is today's attempt, it is hard to find a mesh that is big enough to allow the Blackbirds and Thrush through. Will try a couple more builders' merchants next week.

And finally, some behaviour I cannot explain. Every day the Jackdaw family spend time picking over the ash pile from my last bonfire and are definitely eating from it. Don't know whether they have found interesting grubs and insects or if they are taking some nutrients from the ash.

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