Taking shelter from snowy weather

Many of our small garden birds will have been having a tough time during the recent cold spell. You can make a big difference by putting out food for them but don’t forget they will also need water, since many natural sources will be frozen.

With the snow  blanketing the fields, you may be lucky to see some birds which normally wouldn’t visit gardens. I’ve had several visits from Redwings in my garden this week. These small thrushes usually feed on berries and worms in hedgerows and fields.

Our colour birdcam was online over last weekend and Monday, and I was really surprised to spot a blue tit paying a visit to the box. It was probably taking a break from the cold outside.

Have you been looking after your garden birds this winter? What birds or wild animals have you spotted? Try some detective work in your garden whilst the snow’s still lying, you might spot some animal or bird tracks which could help you identify some of your visitors. Have a look on the BBC AutumnWatch website for some animal track pictures or download a track sheet from BBC Breathing Spaces.

Our Birdcams

We have two nest boxes fitted with cameras. Our original B&W birdcam box was set up outside the Infant classroom in March 2007; this was replaced by the new Colour Infant Birdcam box in 2014. Another Colour Birdcam box was installed round the back of the school, outside the kitchen, in 2008. Still images are uploaded to the birdcam pages every 10-15 seconds.

Viewers’ Diary June – Colour Birdcam

During May, 8 chicks hatched in our colour birdcam box, although it was hard to see them most of the time because the nest was so feathery! During the last week in May, many of the chicks died and only two remain. Will they survive to leave the nest? They are due to fledge by the end of this week.

Our Great Tit chicks have fledged – B&W birdcam

Three of our Great Tit chicks fledged on Sunday 31st May, unfortunately the other two chicks had died a few days previously. Videos and pictures will be added to the project blog in a few days time.

Viewers’ Diary May – B&W Birdcam 2009

During April, Great Tits built a nest and laid five eggs. Incubation has started, so you can expect to see a bird on the nest most the time. Hopefully we should see our chicks hatch week commencing 11th May. (SATS week!)

Update: our our chicks have hatched

Please help us keep a record of activity in our black and white birdcam box (Infant nest box) by leaving your comments on this post.

Viewers’ Diary May 2009 – Colour Birdcam

During April some blue tits built a nest and started laying eggs. As the eggs have been laid, they have been very carefully covered so we have few sighting of them. Six eggs were spotted on 30th April and since incubation hasn’t started, we may expect some more in the next few days. How many eggs have you spotted?

Update: 14th May – The chicks have hatched!

Watch a video of our blue tit maintaining her very springy nest and being fed by her mate. Don’t forget to visit the project gallery to view more pictures and videos.

Help us record activity in our colour birdcam box (kitchen nest box) by leaving your comments on this post.

Birds Out and About – 2009

What birds have you seen  in your garden and what were they doing? Do you have any nest boxes or do you encourage birds into the garden by feeding them? What’s their favourite food?

Perhaps you’ve seen some birds during breaktime or lunchtime in school or spotted some while out for a walk.

Please share your observations by leaving your comments here.

Viewers’ Diary April – B&W birdcam

Blue Tits and great Tits have been visiting the box outside the Infant classroom every day and a blue tit often roosts in the box at night. Recently a pair of Tree Sparrows checked out the box, perhaps this year they will nest in the box rather than destroy other bird’s eggs!

Please help us keep a record of activity in our black and white birdcam box (Infant nest box) by leaving your comments on this post.

Update:  28th April – 5 eggs spotted in the nest!

Viewers’ Diary April – Colour birdcam

Up until now there hasn’t been much activity in our nest box around the back of the school near the kitchen. A couple of blue tits have been spotted investigating the box from the outside and more recently have checked out the inside of the box.

Help us record activity in our colour birdcam box (kitchen nest box) by leaving your comments on this post.

Update: 26th April – 2 blue tit eggs spotted; 30th April – 6 eggs spotted

Viewers’ diary Colour Birdcam – March 2009

The warmer weather has seen the birds being a lot more active. Our B&W birdcam box has already had visits from Great Tits and Blue Tits during the day and a Blue Tit is still roosting in it at night. Nobody has reported seeing anything in our colour birdcam box, although some of the Infants spotted some blue tits flying up to it during one break-time.

Update: blue tits were spotted in the colour birdcam box on the last day of March!

If you spot anything in colour birdcam box, please let us know by commenting on this post.

Viewers Diary B&W Birdcam – March 2009

Although still early in the season, we’ve already had quite a bit of interest in he box since it was cleaned out. We’ve had visits from great tits and blue tits and a blue tit has taken to roosting in the box most nights.
Watch out for nesting activity towards the end of this month and please let us know what you have seen, by leaving a comment on this post.

A New Nesting Season Approaches

Mr Durward very kindly helped me clean out the nest boxes last week and modified the boxes to make them easier to clean out in future years. If you look carefully, the colour birdcam box has markings on it which will help us measure the depth of the nest. Let’s hope the birds appreciate our efforts and have a successful nesting season.

The birdcams will be live on the Internet, at least during school hours, from now on. Please let us know if you spot anything.

Our chick has fledged!

Our one remaining chick (in the colour birdcam box) earned his wings this morning, fledging before the start of school. A happy ending to a week which saw the other chicks dying off one by one. Maybe we will see it in the school grounds.