December, 2015

Wildlife

Wildlife
We're about more than just birds (though obviously we like them a lot).

Notes on nature

We love nature... from every little bug on a blade of grass to birds, butterflies, otters and oaks!
  • Monday's magic moment: a very berry Christmas

    We hope you're having a fun festive season. Whether it's snowy where you are or not, winter's short days make life tough for birds. 

    This mistle thrush looks like it's enjoying these red berries. As you might have guessed, the species got its name from its liking for the white berries of mistletoe. The berries are sticky, so the birds wipe their beaks on tree bark - which helps the parasitic mistletoe spread.

    • Browse RSPB Images to find more gorgeous photos like this one. You can order a print or canvas of any one that takes your fancy!
  • Monday's magic moment: ...and a partridge in a pear tree!

    You must have heard the 12 days of Christmas this year, right?

    I'm not going to recite it again (trust me, you wouldn't want that!) but, as Christmas is almost upon us, here's a picture of a grey partridge for you.

    OK, OK, I know it's not in a pear tree (let's be honest, would a partridge ever be in a pear tree?) but it's in the snow. So it looks pretty Christmassy, right?

    Either way, I hope that you and your family have a wonderful Christmas and New Year. Merry Christmas!

    Grey partridge in the snow. Image by Richard Brooks (www.rspb-images.com)

    This is one of thousands of photos from RSPB Images. There you can find loads of nature-filled Christmassy shots, from traditional robins and holly through to partidges, kingfishers and even buzzards. Enjoy!

  • Monday's magic moment: red-letter day

    Red squirrels aren't easy to find.

    They're often in the news, but I'd never been fortunate enough to spot one in the wild - until a recent trip north of the border.

    Our native squirrel has been part of the Scottish landscape for thousands of years but, as we're often told, is under serious threat from its grey cousin - which brings disease and competition for food.

    So, watching a splendid male red feasting on nuts outside a cafe on the outskirts of Aviemore was certainly worth the wait.

    Only a large window separated us as I tucked into a sausage roll and cappucino, while Bob (naturally) performed complex acrobatics in order to pick out the choicest delicacies from the bird feeder he was hanging from.

    Although I was surrounded by slurping tea drinkers and hardcore cake eaters, I felt the unmistakable thrill I always do when nature slides sideways into everyday life. 

    Only an estimated 140,000 reds remain in the UK, with just 10 per cent of those in England. 

    Let's hope the sterling work being done to protect them in Scotland and their last English and Welsh bastions is finally successful.

    The red squirrel deserves to come off the red list.

    To find more gorgeous prints like the one above, browse RSPB Images.