Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Fieldfare feeding frenzy

Thousands of fieldfares, arriving from Scandinavia and Russia, have passed through Weardale over the last few weeks, gorging themselves with this year's heavy crop of hawthorn berries.

They have a methodical way of stripping off the haws, at an incredibly rapid rate.

First, the lunge ....

.... and then the grab ....

.... followed by a sharp twist and a tug to pull it from its stalk ...

.... then a brief pause followed by little toss of the head to send the berries down into the gullet. 

This one downed seven in under a minute

More about their feeding preferences in the Guardian Country Diary today 

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