Crows REALLY don’t like magpies
Sitting in our conservatory yesterday reading and watching all the activity in our garden. We have a couple of big crows that come in to eat whatever they like apparently and usually they like whatever the magpies are having. Although when there is food out for the badgers, the crows go for that. Yesterday I noticed that as soon as a magpie showed up in the yard, the crows would come from wherever and swoop down on the magpies and chase them away. The chase would go on from tree top to treetop until we could no longer see them flying. As soon as a magpie came back, the crows would fly in on attack again, dive-bombing the magpies. The magpies are well aware of the animosity the crows hold for them and take off when they spot a crow. Luckily for the magpies, the crows don’t hang out very often or the magpies would have to find another place for freeloading.
The babies are all big enough to be out and about now. Last week I saw a Greater Tit mom still feeding her baby. This week the baby had flown to the suet feeder and was helping himself. The mom flew to the feeder too (could have been the dad). They were on opposite sides of the feeder and the bigger bird (which is not bigger by much but has the adult plumage) hopped around until it could reach the smaller bird and then pecked its foot until the baby left. Guess mom wasn’t ready to give up her baby feedings yet or once you start eating on your own, that’s it, you’re out!
Other babies that are out are the squirrel babies. Again, not much difference in size now between the babies and the adults. Yesterday there were 7 squirrels running around the yard after the peanuts. One squirrel was sitting by the wheelbarrow gnome chomping down on the peanuts when a baby came along timidly. Baby had good reason to be timid as the bigger and older squirrel immediately chased him away.
The only parents and babies I have seen cooperating for food have been the two mice. They will both hop into the wheelbarrow gnome and sit there and eat peanuts together as fast as they can because as soon as a squirrel sees them, ATTACK. But the mice are quick and agile and when the older squirrel was chasing the younger squirrel away from the peanuts yesterday, the mouse ran out and grabbed some peanuts and was gone before the squirrel knew it. Gotta be fast to live in my garden!
There is a black and white cat that has discovered that the garden might be a place for a meal. So far he hasn’t caught anything except our cat’s eye, who rushes to the door and growls and smacks the door. Puff is defending the home front. He usually manages to chase the cat away (although that’s usually at about the same time the cat sees us). Puff is then so exhausted from his work that he sits and collapses at our feet while we praise him for doing such a good job.
I love my garden. I’ve never been a birder but now I get all excited when I see a new bird and try and look up to see what it is. Some birds don’t come very often. Today the woodpecker was out there for a while, taking a break from pecking wood it seemed. It’s always interesting to sit and watch the garden and see the action.