Sunday, 30 June 2013


I had a visit off Steve Carter on Saturday he wanted to check the boxes and a couple of natural nests he's found around the farm. He firstly went to check on the buzzard nest I posted about a few weeks back, for those who forgot what the solitary chick looked like here's a reminder:-

the buzzard chick a few weeks ago
Steve climbed the nest and took these couple of pic's look how it's grown.

this rather large buzzard chick is what Steve found in the nest, don't think it was pleased to see him

one of the parent birds on the hunt

We've had a Cuckoo or two around the farm over the last couple of months and every time Steve thought he had a Cuckoo egg in a nest (mostly Pipits) it's been predated or in the case of last year washed away. Steve's good mate Gary Pitt another local birder and nest finder has his own nest box colony and when Steve and Gary were over there they discovered a Cuckoo egg in a Tree pipits nest, here are the two eggs for comparison:-

tree pipit on the left and cuckoo eggs
    A couple of weeks later they checked on the nest again and the young Cuckoo had hatched and had thrown the Tree pipit chicks out of the nest.

the young cuckoo settles down after throwing the tree pipit chicks out of their nest

As the Cuckoo gets bigger it starts to fill the nest.
the cuckoo chick a week or so later

This last photo is when Steve went over to see it being ringed it's huge now compared to its foster parents the Tree pipits.

the now huge chick getting ready to be ringed
It'll be off soon to Africa where hopefully it will survive its first year and be back with us next spring. Cuckoo's in general are declining the reasons are not really known, the adult birds are already starting their long migration back to west Africa and some have been tagged to try to find out why.

Steve also climbed and checked this Woodpigeon nest which has two eggs

woodpigeon nest
The Great tits are doing well these chicks wont be long about.
great tit chicks

 The Redstarts that Steve ringed and I posted about a few weeks ago successfully fledged that was great news in itself but a check on the nest box revealed that the birds are going for a second brood.

five eggs in the Redstarts second brood.

Big thanks again to Steve who provided me with all the photo's Ta mate.

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