Friday 5 November 2021

Mad or misinformed

 Last [2020] Summer, for the first time in 25 years the windows of our home became a holocaust for thrushes Turdus philomena and other birds. In noticeable numbers these creatures would fly into the glass at speed and kiill themselves.  After a number of these collisions we covered the windows with bright post-its to lessen the chance of them reflecting, and looking like, the sky. It may have worked - or all the birds flying under this misapprehension had offed themselves - but eventually we stopped hearing these fatal thunks. And this year 2021, the geomagnetic anomaly has shifted to Wexford and we didn't get a repeat performance of the tragedy.

However, round about Hallowe'en, we started to hear fluttery thumps on three of the windows which all seemed to be caused by a blackbird Turdus merula which was jumping up from the sill and making repeated, aggressive, flapping attacks on the window-pane. If we knocked on the window, or even appeared close to the glass, the perp would fly quickly away chattering. This is really too late in the year to be mating or nesting, but maybe it's never too late to assert your dominance and see off a rival bird of the same species.

The major consequence for us, is that in his excitement the bird is shitting purple poos on our white[ish] window-sills. I begin to see why Linnaeus named this genus Turdus.

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