The Crazy Mix- Birds and People

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by MartinGarner on January 26, 2011 · 4 comments

in Birding Western Palearctic

I have had some interesting encounters in recent days. Some scary. Some wonderful. And they are all around observations in  the strange middle ground where humans and birds meet.

The photo of feathers above was one such case. But just  for fun- can you identify the bird species– even to age and sex?

I found this individual with a broken wing having hit some (man-made) overhead power lines. Its could just about hobble away from me. I had a choice to ‘leave it to nature’ or end its life. I chose the latter, but with some uncertainty. Was this merciful or would it have been better had a not intervened. Its injury was sustained in the first place by human activity. (Answer to bird’s identity at the bottom.)

Now to these bad boys (or boy and girl)

Size assessment relative to other species is an important element of goose identification. Discuss! Is this the largest pair of geese known to human kind? Part of a collection which is geared towards wildfowl conservation, these 2 look like they have been a diet of steroids and crossed with a  large Turkey! Certainly some human intervention involved. Have you seen any geese bigger than this?

Finally

To my intervention in my garden birds. Years ago I threw bread out for the birds. Stale white bread. Then I learnt that the good looking wild birds like things like nuts, millet, nyger and became a little better and putting the right stuff out. I rarely throw out kitchen scraps now. Recently however, I bought a block of Edam (smelly-feet) cheese. I thought my family would like it. One meal and turned up noses later- I broke  the block in half and chucked it into one of the metal fatball feeders. I was expecting little interest in it form the birds and assumed I would be  removing it in a weeks time- untouched. Then the surprise.

Here’s the cheese…

…and here’s the surprise– once they had found it, every day for the last week one or more Long-tailed Tits comes in to the garden and straight on to the Edam.

Have I found a new garden bird super- food? Humans and birds. Sometimes messy but also lots of  fun.

And the mystery bird?

First winter male Eurasian Wigeon- did you get it right?

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