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Bird feeder gallery


Starlings in hostile takeover bid

I always feed the birds but recently invested in a state-of-the-art feeder for the princely sum of £7.50 from Wilko.

As I’ve been banging on about, it’s vital to feed birds in winter, especially during extreme spells of weather like this one.

I’ve got a great view from my new office and it’s amazing the change in behaviour a cold snap brings about. We did have 3 resident starlings – two adults and a juvenile.

However, in today’s sub-zero temperatures and heavy snow, the word’s got around that I’m the sap who’s putting the extra food out – at one point, there were 13 scrapping for food on the feeder! A positive murmuration.

As well as fighting with each other, the resident male blackbird was nonplussed by their appearance, as were the coal and blue tits, who were forced out altogether.

Thanks to Gary Welford for the pictures, who said they were ‘boring’ until he watched them while making a cuppa and ended up shooting 100 photos! Here are the best…


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Mandy Watson is a freelance journalist and an incurable plantaholic. MandyCanUDigIt grew from the tiny seed of a Twitter account into the rainforest of information you see before you. Gardening columnist for the Sunderland Echo, Shields Gazette and Hartlepool Mail and editor of the Teesdale Mercury Magazine. Attracted by anything rebellious, exotic and nerdy, even after all these years. Passionate about northern England and gardens everywhere. Falls over a lot.


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