We managed to see 146 different bird species during our travels through parts of Wales and Scotland, at least 50 of which we saw again while hiking in the Lake District of England. Some of those bird species were so common, we saw them everyday. Ten species (listed alphabetically) became the equivalents of the cardinals, bluejays, chickadees, nuthatches, downy woodpeckers, and crows I usually see everyday in my Minnesota backyard.
Blue Tits love bird feeders as much as our chickadees do. But this bird seemed to find the newly formed buds quite tasty.
Crows are just as common in England as they are in Minnesota and most of the U.S. An all-purpose bird that is clever enough to find food almost anywhere.
Chaffinches also love bird feeders, but are quite common in deciduous woods — easily recognized by their loud and repetitive songs. Males are quite colorful; females are a drab gray-brown with the same black and white wing feathers.
Eurasian Blackbirds might be the most common of the common English backyard birds. Their name is appropriate for their color, but they are close relatives of the American Robin and act quite a bit like our robins, exploring the litter and lawns for bugs and other goodies.
Everyone’s favorite everyday bird — the European Robin (or English Robin in this case). They are loud singers (not the prettiest song either) and quite tame, posing just a few feet away and even taking mealworms or peanuts from one’s hand.
Of the half dozen tit species in the U.K., this bird is the largest. They too love bird feeders, and call out “tea-cher, tea-cher” from high in the trees to let us know they are there.
Jackdaws, members of the crow and jay family, are highly social, often congregating in groups on lawns and grassy fields. Their striking pale iris and bi-colored gray heads make them an attractive backyard bird. Photo by Debbie Reynolds.
Pied Wagtails are members of a family we don’t have in the U.S. that includes both pipet and wagtail species. As the name indicates this bird wags its tail up and down almost continuously as it looks around grassy fields for insects or other food.
Warblers in the U.K. seem drab compared to ours, but their songs are beautiful. Several species follow the same pattern as this Willow Warbler of gray upper body with light, buffy breast and belly, and faint eyestripes. Song is the best way to tell the look-alike species apart.
Woodpigeons are chunky birds, about 50-75% larger than our Mourning Doves. At home on grassy lawns as well as tree tops, these large birds make you flinch when they take off in a flurry of wingbeats. Photo by Debbie Reynolds.
That is the top ten “everyday birds” from across the pond — our new feathered friends from the U.K.
Wonderful shots, Sue. Those birds may be common there, but they seem exotic to me. I especially love the shots of the robin and the chaffinch, with wonderful details and beautiful backgrounds. I’m assuming you had your big lens with you.
Yes, I did, as did fellow traveler, Debbie. A real pain (literally) to carry around, but worth it when we got close enough to some of the birds to get good detail in the shots.
I’ve never traveled overseas with my good gear, but might do so next year if a possible trip to Iceland comes to pass.
Take all your lenses. Lots to see there!
I’m hoping the plans do come together for 2017.
I’m glad you have enjoyed comparing species from our different countries. I love our UK birds but your birds are so much more varied and colourful. However I do note that some species look so similar.
Chaffinch, Bullfinch, Green Finch, Goldfinch, Siskin — you have some really pretty little birds in the U.K. I really enjoyed seeing them!
Loved seeing them all, especially the English Robin and the Jackdaw!
Robins are definitely a favorite with photographers. They are so cooperative and ever so photogenic. We never got tired of seeing or photographing them. A robin a day…