Sparrowhawks are one of our smallest birds of prey, the male being somewhere between a blackbird and a collared dove in size. The female is larger, up to the size of a pigeon. Sparrowhawks are excellent bird-hunters, catching small species
Teal are winter visitors to the UK where they live on freshwater lakes and the surrounding wet grassland, feeding on insects and plants.
Wigeon are winter visitos to the UK, arriving in large flocks to feed on wet grassland.
The mallard is a very common species and can be seen all year round, usually near water where it likes to feed on aquatic plants and insects.
A fairly common dabbling duck the Gadwall is only a little smaller than a Mallard. It nests in small numbers in the UK, on freshwater lakes with a lot of vegetation, but can be seen in larger numbers in winter
Greylag geese are a common species that can be seen all year round. They like to live near fresh water but can often be found grazing on short grass. They can migrate long distances and make a loud honking noise.
Herons are a very common species and can be seen all year round near to fresh water. They hunt fish and amphibians at the water’s edge and often stand stock still waiting for their prey to swim past.
Canada geese are a very common species and can be seen all year round near to fresh water. They feed mainly on aquatic plants and grass and will often fly in a ‘V’ shaped formation.
Greenfinches are mainly found in areas of scrub and woodland and feed mainly on seeds. They can be seen all year round but their numbers have declined in recent years due to a disease.
Our largest and most common pigeon, the woodpigeon is a familiar bird of gardens, parks, woodlands and farmlands right across the country. Its husky ‘hoo-hroo’ call is a well-known sound of the country. Woodpigeons feed on seeds, leaves, grains, fruit,
Cuckoos are migrant birds that usually arrive in April and leave in August. They lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, such as reed warblers, who raise the cuckoo chick as their own. The distinctive call of the
The hobby is Britain’s only migratory falcon and it arrives in April to breed in the disused nests of crows. It is an excellent flier and hunts dragonflies and other birds, such as swallows on the wing. It can be
The common sandpiper is a smallish wading bird which breeds along fast-moving rivers and near lakes, lochs and reservoirs in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the north of England. Wintering birds may be spotted along the south coast but passage
The male Goldeneye is a handsome diving duck. Apart from a small breeding population in the highlands of Scotland, most Goldeneye only spend the winter in this country, particularly on larger lakes and reservoirs. Goldeneye never really gather in large
The lesser black-backed gull can be found on farmland, wetlands and around the coast. It is a large, elegant gull just a little smaller than herring gull. The world’s population of this gull can be found entirely in Europe; in
Red kites are scavengers that can be seen all year round, often feeding on road kill. They were hunted almost to extinction in the 19th century but have recently been successfully reintroduced to Northamptonshire and are now a common sight
Dunnocks are a very common bird but their dull colours and secretive behaviour means that they often go unnoticed. They live in a variety of habitats including woodland and scrub and feed mainly on insects, berries and seeds.
The Bullfinch is a large, plump finch which feeds on buds and fruit in woodlands, hedgerows, parklands, gardens and orchards. Beautiful, easy to tame and skilful at mimicry, it was often taken as a cage-bird in times past. Shy and
A small relative of the moorhen and coot and about the same size as a redshank, water rails live in reedbeds and freshwater wetlands where they feed on invertebrates and small fish. Secretive and rarely seen they are more often
Common terns are summer visitors that can usually be seen swooping over lakes whilst hunting for fish.
Blackcaps are a common warbler that like to live in scrubby areas where they feed mainly on insects and berries. They are mainly summer visitors but are occasionally seen in the winter. Only the male has a black cap.
The Garden Warbler is a medium-sized warbler of woodland and tall scrub, habitats it shares with the Blackcap. Garden Warblers are summer visitors, arriving in April and leaving in July, although Continental birds can be seen on migration around the
Whitethroats are a summer visitor that live mainly in scrub and bramble, feeding on insects and fruit.
Collared doves are small, common pigeons found in farmland, woodland, parks and gardens across the country. Since breeding in the UK was first recorded in the 1950s numbers have increased and the collared dove is now one of the top
The goosander is a large duck of rivers and lakes in forested areas. It eats fish and nests in holes in trees.
A common and familiar bird, the pied wagtail is often seen in towns and cities, dashing across lawns, roads and car parks while wagging its long tail up and down. Pied wagtails eat insects but will feed on seeds and