It won’t have escaped your attention – at least if you follow me on Twitter – that, just over a month ago now, myself and my partner erected a new feeding station in the front ‘garden’ of his home in the centre of Heaton, Newcastle. Big woop, you might say; though please bare in mind that this is not exactly your typical garden. Rather a 2x2m stretch of cold, grey concrete boasting one measly shrub, positioned right next to a busy road and, worse still, outside and adjacent the front doors of multiple student abodes. Indeed, before this, we were yet to see a bird in the garden. Not a single one. Little wonder really given the constant noise and clamour.
Well, after kitting out the towering stand of cast iron with myriad tasty morsels ranging from sunflower hearts and peanuts, to suet balls and mealworms, I have been watching the proceedings daily – spurred on by claims on social media that, no matter the location, if you provide, they will come. Something that now, after countless vigils, I know to be true.
Sure, given our location we were never going to attract the sweeping accumulations of your typical, rural garden; though what I have observed thus far has been promising. A pair of Dunnocks were first to arrive, now present daily and looking as if they are nesting in the lonely Privet pictured above. House Sparrows came next, and though their visits to date have been fleeting, they are growing in regularity – with the same being said for the Blackbirds and Blue Tits sporadically gracing us with there presence. Singles of Goldfinch and Magpie and a pair of gluttonous Woodpiegons complete the set.
Now, these scant avian visitors may do little to excite readers of this blog: those accustomed to busy feeders and great gatherings of scarce or appealing species in their gardens. To me, however, they represent a victory. A little slice of the natural world right in the heart of the city that can be enjoyed daily – though most often with a coffee in the early morning.
I wonder what will arrive next? My money is on a Robin, or perhaps a Starling; though I did observe a Collared Dove inspecting matters from a neighbours roof yesterday…
Pigeon and Pie – our two visiting Woodpigeons