Skip to content

Nutter and Nuttette

A tit on the bird feeder – possibly a coal tit?

Back in the Spring, I bought some bird feeders for the garden and hung them in the corner between the two bedrooms. That used to be a very boring part of the garden – other than an acer tree turning vaguely pink in autumn,  nothing much ever happened there. But since I started regularly restocking the bird feeders with nuts, seeds and fat balls, that corner has become like an outdoor aviary. It’s a mass of activity, from first light until dusk, with well over a dozen birds regularly there at any one time. They’re mostly a mixture of different sorts of tits, and they generally get on pretty well. If the food stocks are getting low then there are some squabbles, which the great tits usually win, but most of the time they all feed happily on the same feeder, or wait in the adjacent bushes for their turn.

However, the undisputed king and queen of the bird feeder are a pair of nuthatches. They are both really hard birds, and bully all the others massively. Nutter and Nuttette will only tolerate each other on the feeder (and even then, they prefer to have one each). If any other bird has the temerity to approach the feeder while the nuthatches are there, they get headbutted viciously and driven away. In fact the male, Nutter the Nuthatch, has even been seen to do a kamikaze dive onto a squirrel that was trying to get into the peanut feeder! The squirrel was rapidly scared off and Nutter took its place on the feeder. It’s a very literal illustration of the term “pecking order”, with the nuthatches clearly right at the top!

It’s certainly added a huge amount of interest to that corner of the garden. Though now the Dawn Chorus is louder than ever, and directly outside my bedroom window, so there is something of a downside. 

{ 2 } Comments

  1. pauld | 27 October 2017 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    But look at the bright side. If the birds wake you up at dawn then you could be in work so much earlier, wouldnt that be great 🙂

  2. Gillian | 2 November 2017 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Or alternatively, I could put some ear plugs in, turn over, and try to get back to sleep!