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redstart

I've been seeing a bird out of the corner of my eye darting in and out of a hole in the house wall (there are lots, we never seem to quite get around to it). My hindbrain was telling me I don't recognise this new neighbour but I never quite saw him. So today I sat for a while and watched to get a better look at him (them, actually), and sure enough, I'd never seen one before. Looked him up on the RSPB site and we have a pair of redstarts  :)
It says they are summer visitors to Exmoor, so close enough not to be too unlikely but apparently rare for them to come into a garden (mind you, I do go in for the 'wild' look, so they probably didn't realise it's a garden, to be fair).
I'm hoping for babies because there is a pair and they are very busy bringing lots of food in. We already have at least 2 nests of swallows, one fledged one not quite yet, a mother duck and four babies in the 'pond' (yes, ok, its a big ditch that filled up with all the recent rain. Picky picky), a blackbird nest long since fledged (one baby), bluetits in the wall on the other side of the house, one pied wagtail nest by the back door (3 babies fledged and gone) and at least two nests of wrens in the sheds. No house sparrows this year though. And the martins started a nest but seem to have moved on.

All in all its been a good year for bird babies around here  :)
Gardening on the edge of Exmoor, in Devon

“It's still magic even if you know how it's done.” 
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Posts

  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 23,800
    I have black redstarts in my garden in France. They nest in the garage. Not very musical birds and quite noisy warning me off when the babies are learning to fly!
    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • BijdezeeBijdezee Posts: 1,484
    I had one passing through in the winter he spent the day in and out of our old shed which lacked a door. 
    You are lucky having a pair nesting. Very nice.  :)
     
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,858
    I’m very jealous ... I’ve never seen redstarts although I’ve kept my eyes peeled when I’ve been in the right areas. Lucky you 😎 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,008
    We had them in our garden in central, rural Belgium and we have them here and this year, one pair has nested in our "cave" instead of in the ruin like the others.  We have been shouted at a lot.   Entertaining birds.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • raisingirlraisingirl Posts: 7,079
    I have black redstarts in my garden in France. They nest in the garage. Not very musical birds and quite noisy warning me off when the babies are learning to fly!
    These are common redstarts, not the black ones. They seem extremely timid so far, no shouting yet but perhaps that will change if they do raise a brood
    Gardening on the edge of Exmoor, in Devon

    “It's still magic even if you know how it's done.” 
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 10,441
    I've only ever seen a few briefly around here but mid and North Wales have loads of them. We've got the right habitat here so they must be around but they don't seem to tolerate people from what I've seen. The only times I've been able to get close were when they were busy with chicks. I've always hoped they will use one of my nest boxes one year but nothing so far. Hopefully you'll get some good views if they stick around.
    If you can keep your head, while those around you are losing theirs, you may not have grasped the seriousness of the situation.
  • floraliesfloralies Posts: 2,677
    We have both down here, the black are more common, we have them nesting every year. They are probably the least timid of all the birds in the garden, love to see them feeding their young when they have fledged.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,789
    That's a lovely addition @raisingirl. Great when something 'new' appears isn't it?  :)

    I've seen swifts returning to nest in what used to be an old farm building, but - as is often the case round here- it had been turned into houses, so no nests left. 
    They've found a corner below the eaves at one of the houses, and have been very industrious constructing a new home. Lovely to see them. My sister told me they had some returning after years of being absent too.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....



    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • raisingirlraisingirl Posts: 7,079
    @Dovefromabove I don't have a very good camera and I had to take this from inside my kitchen because they stay away if I go outside, so this is the best I could do. But I thought you might like to see them :) 

    Mr

    Bit closer

    Mrs

    And this is where they are nesting, I think

    Gardening on the edge of Exmoor, in Devon

    “It's still magic even if you know how it's done.” 
  • mikeymustardmikeymustard Posts: 495
    What a fantastic thing to find in your garden, I'm v.jealous!
    I think I've heard them around here (Cheltenham) but never seen one, but I saw a pair in west wales once, gorgeous things
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