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Rich

Garden Birds

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I haven't used the camera for a while so decided to sit in the garden the other day and took some of the birds. There was a lot of activity, I picked the right time! :)

 

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Nice photos :)

 

Are those Parakeets in the first couple of picture? I've read some areas have 1000's of them in the wild.

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Thanks. Yes they're parakeets, they fly by often and sometimes land on the feeders. That day they visited in both the morning and evening. Noisy buggers though!

 

I think there are lots of them in W/SW London but they're only in the South East of the UK.

 

It's nice seeing the woodpeckers too, haven't seen them close up before.

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Very clear colourful pictures Rich and some unusual birds. Initially i thought you was at a zoo.

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We're lucky with the variety of birds we get in the garden. A parrot isn't something you see everyday. They are so clever though and the one hanging on the black feeder couldn't get the seeds but knew the top needed to come off and was trying to pull it. I've not seen any other bird do that.

 

I'm just waiting for a redtail kite to eat it's catch in the garden now, they are so difficult to photograph in the air. We also get Jay birds but they come and go so quickly I've not managed to photograph one.

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I'm absolutely crap at identifying birds. Outside of the Robin, thrush and sparrow I'm pretty stuffed. Well, I'd know an Ostrich too but probably get that mixed up with an Emu! :-)

 

Great pics though Rich

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So am I so don't worry you're not alone. I had to use Google especially with the tits. The yellow ones I believe are Marsh Tits and the others are Blue Tits. I'm sure sagitar will correct me if I'm wrong.

 

The woodpecker with red on it's head is a juvenile and those with black are adults.

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There are loads more tits than that ( ooh errr mrs ). Long tailed, coal, great. Think the blue tit and great tit are the ones with yellow.

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Coal, Willow and Marsh all look similar! I think you're right and the others are great tits.

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I bought a new monitor this last weekend and I have yet to calibrate it properly so the colours I'm seeing aren't very accurate. However the Tits are pretty easy to identify from the shape of the colour patches and I see only Blue Tits and Great Tits. 

No Marsh Tits I'm afraid.

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Oh well never mind. I was going via the RSPB website and there are so many varieties I couldn't work out what they were. They're a pleasure to watch regardless of the breed but I hate the bullying magpies and pigeons who scare to younger birds away.

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I'll see if I can find some decent pics of the most common of the Titmice. The ones that visit our feeders are Blue Tits, Great Tits and Coal Tits. We do get Long Tailed Tits occasionally, but they always arrive in a mob of about ten or more and you can't mistake them.

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Here are the three most common Titmice visitors to our garden.

 

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This is the most common of all, the Blue Tit. The head is mainly white but it has a blue collar and a blue cap. The overall impression is of bright yellow and blue but there is a black stripe down the centre of the yellow breast. It's the only Tit with this little flat cap. Sometimes the feathers of the cap stand upright. If you see this cap, irrespective of what colour it appears to be, you are looking at a Blue Tit. 

 

 

 

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This is the second most common Tit for us, The Great Tit. It's bigger than all the others. It has a black head that ends in a small white patch on the nape of the neck. It also has a black stripe down the centre of the bright yellow breast and two large white cheek patches that are very distinctive.

 

 

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Thirdly I'm showing the Coal Tit. It's about the same size as a Blue Tit but is much duller in colour. It's yellowish on the underside but not nearly as bright as the Blue Tit. The black head is not unlike the Great Tit from some angles but it has a bright white stripe down the back of the head and no black stripe down the breast.

 

I have no pictures of Marsh or Willow tits because they don't visit our garden. They are not unlike the Coal Tit in general appearance except that they have no white head stripe and the black head feathers extend further down the back.

 

 

 

Finally I've added a picture showing a Blue Tit and a Coal Tit together for comparison.

 

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I hope the pictures help with your bird watching.

 

 

 

 

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It will for me.....Very detailed images, it must be really relaxing watching them feeding and in song.

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Thanks sagitar. I think the black and yellow ones I've been seeing are all great tits then. The juveniles are a bit confusing though. What's the last one in the bird bath, a great tit?

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Thanks sagitar. I think the black and yellow ones I've been seeing are all great tits then. The juveniles are a bit confusing though. What's the last one in the bird bath, a great tit?

The last one, the one sitting alone in the bird bath is a Blue Tit - look at the cap.

 

In the previous picture (two birds in the birdbath) the left hand one is an adult Great Tit and the other is most likely a juvenile Great Tit - not yet properly feathered and bedraggled from the water. The give-away is its beak - much too large and the wrong shape for any of the smaller Tits. The rest of them are:

First Tit picture - Great Tit

Second - Blue Tit - look at the cap

Third - Blue Tit - look at the cap

Fourth - Blue Tit - look at the cap

 

I've calibrated my monitor now and some of your colours look way off. The light may account for some of it, but if they are coming out of the camera like that, something needs adjusting. Otherwise it may be a processing issue. The second tit picture is clearly a Blue Tit, but the cap should be blue as should the band around the neck. The remaining colour on the face should be white. It's odd because the Starling and both of the Great Spotted woodies look great.

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So blue tits have no blue on them when they're born, just yellow and black/brown/grey? Depending how you see the colour.

 

I've checked the photos on the camera and the colours are similar. How do you mean they're off? I don't do much processing but always work from the RAW file.

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So blue tits have no blue on them when they're born, just yellow and black/brown/grey? Depending how you see the colour.

 

I've checked the photos on the camera and the colours are similar. How do you mean they're off? I don't do much processing but always work from the RAW file.

 

When Blue Tits are born, they have no feathers, so they are flesh coloured. Over the period in which they are fed in the nest they gradually grow feathers which are generally in the same colour pattern as the adult but very dull. At the time they leave the nest some of their "gape" is still showing and the colours are still very dull and sometimes patchy because of the uneven growth of feathers. All of the Blue Tits in your set are well past this stage i.e. there is no sign of any "gape" so even if they are young I would still expect the colours to be close to the adult pattern.

 

When I said some of the colours were off, I was looking at the wide differences in the background colours. Look, for example, at the colours of the bird bath. I would guess that there is more red in the first one than in the second.

 

I can understand that your camera is set to RAW, but the pictures on the website are JPEGS so they must have be processed, either in the camera or via some processing software.

 

Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures of newly fledged Blue Tits, but I'm attaching a picture of a Coal Tit just out of the nest. You can see that he still has much of his gape left but has already achieved most of his adult colouring.

 

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I see what you mean about the background colours now but yes I'd put that down to the light. I took these all throughout the day at different times but when I get on the imac I'll look at the post processing again vs the RAW files.

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We've seen no Greenfinches (or Siskins) in the garden this year, but today a lone one turned up. I managed to get a couple of shots before it looked me straight in the eye and beetled off.

 

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I still think they look more yellow than green.

 

 

 

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Stunning looking bird... I confess i'm no bird namer but i do appreciate the beauty and scary as it is i think i'm one of the last generation who will careless if they are there or not.  

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I don't think we've ever had greenfinches in the garden. Do they prefer any particular food?

 

We were having dinner on the garden earlier and were watching the birds. A small sparrowhawk swooped down and grabbed one of the tits off the feeder! Played with it on the grass for a few seconds, the missus shrieked and it flew off! That's 3 I've seen in the garden now.

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All the finches seem to like sunflower kernels, but I find that their habits change. It's not long since Goldfinches would eat nothing but nyger, but now they go straight to the sunflower seeds.

 

We get the occasional Sparrow Hawk in the garden, but the smaller birds seem to keep a good lookout for them. The cats are more of a problem for the ground feeding birds. I often find the remains of a Wood Pigeon and I saw a cat take a female Blackbird recently.

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