Thursday, 16 January 2014

The Peculiar Case of the Disappearing Chicken Food

Our seven hens have, of late,been on strike due to their moult. Recently, however,we have noticed an increase in their appetite for their evening corn which has regularly disappeared without trace by the following morning.
Assuming they were powering up ready to reward us with an egg bonanza,we have been disappointed as nothing has been forthcoming from that direction.Two evenings ago ,after calling the girls home for their evening corn and then locking up their pen for the night,I was alerted by a sudden excited fluttering and twittering behind me.The true culprits had arrived-a dozen or more Tree Sparrows who immediately joined the hens for their evening meal,thus solving two mysteries ie 1)Who was eating all our corn ?and b)Where do our Tree Sparrows disappear to during the winter?
Returning to the house,a low flying jet thundered overhead ,putting up 1500-2000 Pink Footed Geese which had been feeding two fields away,a sight to gladden the heart (if not for our neighbour in whose field they were feasting.)
A short walk to the village this afternoon without binoculars,turned up two dozen or so Fieldfare feeding in the fields by the roadside,whilst a quiet single call alerted me to a male Bullfinch who kept me company for about fifty yards along the hedgerow.A wheezy call then briefly revealed a Yellowhammer, perhaps returning to its usual Spring haunts.
Perhaps the end of this bizarre winter is in sight?

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