At this time of year birds are much less visible as they recover from the breeding season or prepare for migration. Many of the birds coming to feeders are this year’s young, often identified by the fact that they haven’t yet started to moult into adult plumage. For example, young robins may have little or no red breast yet. Over the past month or so, we have been fortunate to have regular visits from up to four bullfinches, the males with their striking red breast plumage, black crown and distinctive white rump as they fly off.
Unusually, on two occasions, I’ve seen a kestrel trying to catch birds on our feeders. This is, of course, a common sight with sparrowhawks but the first time I’ve seen such behaviour from a kestrel.
As we come to the end of July, swifts are preparing to leave or have already left for Africa. So make the most of any last sightings of them flashing by with their screaming calls.