Friday, 3 October 2014

Thistle-tweaker !

This brightly coloured little finch was around in Anglo-Saxon days back in the Eighth Century , it was known then as the 'Thisteltuige or Thistle-tweaker, quite apt when you watch these delicate little finches extracting seeds from Teasel heads.

Back in the latter part of the nineteenth century the Goldfinch was very popular as a cage bird, so much so, that numbers of wild goldfinches were seriously affected. The then Society for the protection of birds, now known as the Royal Society Protection Birds made it there concern to do something about it. 

The Protection of Wild Birds Act 1880 gave the Goldfinches some protection, but it has been reported that this was widely ignored at that time.

Goldfinches outside the cage !

Thankfully Goldfinch numbers have fully recovered , and in my garden are much the most commonest finch, finding 'Niger' and sunflower heart feeders irresistible. 

Another interesting fact associated with these birds is its collective noun, A number of Goldfinches are known as a
 'Charm of Goldfinches'

The word charm is defined as a blended sound of many voices,
 as of birds, schoolchildren etc.

You will often hear a charm of goldfinches flying overhead as they make a light tinkering sound, this same twittering goes on as they feed together.

As nice as it is to see Goldfinches feeding in the garden, you can not beat the sight of Goldfinches feeding in the wild, especially if you are lucky enough to see them extracting seeds from Teasel heads.

These were seen feeding on a clump of Teasel next to cattle grid as I came down the track from Kingshill farm back to the main road, unfortunately only managed a few shots before they were disturbed by another car passing.

Nice end to the day.

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