Flying ants

Last week there was a flock of black-headed gulls above my back garden and much higher there were swifts wheeling around.  Both species were feeding on flying ants – so I contributed my observation to the Society of Biology flying ant survey. I wonder how many more of these I will see? This was good…

Pheasants

Remember there was a bit of fuss about pheasants and buzzards back in May?  Around that time I was writing an article for BBC Wildlife magazine about pheasants!  Now the article is out in the September (!) BBC Wildlife. Pheasants are amazing birds.  They are tasty, beautiful and interesting.  They are also amazingly abundant in…

A chat with Charlie

Last week I had a chat with Charlie Moores about grouse shooting, hen harrier shooting, farmland birds, climate change, the honours system, the RSPB, whether I am happy, whether Charlie is any good at spotting birds, bluethroats, politicians, politics etc You can listen to our chat on Charlie’s podcast Talking Naturally (where you will also…

What has stayed the same?

In the June issue of British Birds – which has a lovely, vicious sparrowhawk on its cover, I was struck by the juxtaposition of two papers.  One was about lesser-spotted woodpeckers and the other about Dartford warblers in the Thames Basin heathlands of Surrey. Each was an interesting and valuable record of what we know,…