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blue tit


Thursday, 17th October 2002, West Yorkshire

blue and great titsgreat titWe're glad to see great tits and blue tits starting to take notice of the new bird pudding feeder (peanuts and seeds in a block of fat) that we've hung from the bird table.

We're surprised to see a great tit pecking at an old apple that we've peeled and halved and put out on the bird table for the blackbirds. It pecks away at the centre then goes to the rim of the table and pecks again. It doesn't seem to be eating the apple itself; why shouldapples on a garden tree a piece of soft apple need so much pecking? We realise that it must have picked a seed from the core and that it's breaking into that.

This particular apple was a red one that I'd picked from a tree growing on the scrubby embankment by the railway bridge at the foot of Storrs Hill. It probably originated from an apple core or perhaps from a seed in a bird dropping. I had intended to draw the apple and describe the taste but it sat on my desk for a couple of weeks and the skin began to pucker. I did taste a small piece as I put it out; it was as sweet as some of the shop-bought apples.

Haunt of the Hern

heronA heron perches on a rock in the middle of river below the ruined weir. It's a bird which I never remember seeing on the river back in the 1960s and 70s when the river was more polluted than it is page

Related Link

Johnny's Story, a short biography of 'Johnny Appleseed', the nickname of frontiersman John Chapman (1774-1845) who set up nurseries to supply the early settlers with apple trees.

Richard Bell
Richard Bell,
wildlife illustrator

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