Now that the leaves are completely off the trees, it’s a lot easier to spot birds in the trees. They can also be a lot “bolder” at this time of year- but the truth is they can’t afford the extra energy to move far away from you in the colder weather. Food is also scarce- nearly all the rowan berries are gone now. But the teasel crop at New Kinord is popular with the finches and you often see mixed flocks of chaffinch and goldfinch on them. They fly up into the trees as you approach but don’t go far- I always imagine them watching me watching them, and thinking “oh, just push off and let us back to our teasels!”
The bullfinches are also clearing up the very last of the rowan berries…the fieldfares didn’t miss many but there are still one or two trees with a few clusters of berries left.
You may also see birds like redpoll feeding high in the tops of the birch trees. These fairly unobtrusive finches take their name from the red capon their forehead and will be feeding on seeds left over on the birch trees. It’s also a good time to spot treecreepers. These small brown birds pick their way up tree trunks and along branches, winkling insects out of crevices with their narrow,curved beak.
So keep your eyes peeled if you’re out in the woods!