Can’t ignore them anymore…


I confess I’ve been turning something of a blind eye to the Pink Feet for the last week or so – small groups here and there on the mosses, the odd party overhead in the evening – but there was no ignoring them this afternoon as I worked in the garden at Dempsey Towers.
A steady stream of birds, at least a thousand or so, were moving low in the eastern sky over Plex, calling away as they drifted south, presumably towards the roost on the Alt estuary.
Undeniably evocative (the sound is in the blood of anyone from round here after all), but it’s what they’re evocative of that’s the problem this year – not sure I’m ready for another grey, cold winter just yet.
Clearly other birds apart from geeses on the move today – Goldcrests and Jays in the garden, with Mipits and Skylarks calling overhead.
Speckled Woods, Red Admiral, Large White and Common Darter out in the sun too.

2 thoughts on “Can’t ignore them anymore…

  1. With winter just around the corner, many people may be starting to think about stocking up on grit for the coming months. However, at RSPB Leighton Moss nature reserve, the need for grit is very different, as it’s vital for helping some special residents with their diet through the colder weather.
    As the largest reedbed in north west England, the Silverdale reserve is home to a large number of bearded tits. Like many other birds, in the summer months bearded tits eat insects. But to avoid having to migrate in winter like swifts and swallows, the birds change their diet to eat the seeds of reeds – with the help of grit.
    Richard Miller, Warden at RSPB Leighton Moss and Morecambe Bay nature reserve, said: “Bearded tits don’t have teeth, so in order to grind down the hard reed seeds to digest them, they also have to eat grit. Here at Leighton Moss, we put the grit out on trays so the birds can easily access what they need.”
    This results in a great opportunity for visitors to the reserve to see bearded tits up close. October is the main month for the birds to come down to the grit trays, as this is when they make the transition from eating insects to eating reed seed.
    Visitors can look for these rare birds at Leighton Moss any day, but there is also a special ‘Brilliant bearded tits’ guided walk every Wednesday in October, from 9.30-11.30 am. The cost is £7 per adult (£5.50 for RSPB members).
    For more information on other wildlife and events at Leighton Moss, visit


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