Whilst out on our walk this morning, two vivid speckled birds with yellow faces and breasts, burst out of the undergrowth and landed on a branch nearby.
Startled, the pair didn’t seem too bothered by Leo and I, which surprised me, as a dog will make birds nervous. As we walked along the path, they bounced jauntily from bush to shrub, keeping ahead and just out of reach. Birds in the UK are affectionally known as LBJ’s (Little Brown Jobs), so it was delightful to see this pair of yellowhammers – the closest we have to a canary in the British Isles. Their call is described as sounding like “a little bit of bread and no cheeeese”, and is a distinctive and welcome sound of spring.
There is a battle going on in the countryside as carpets of arable crops are in stark contrast to the thrusting green spikes of meadow grasses and low-lying flowers vying with the limp washed out winter browns, who will loose this battle. They do every spring.
Head over to the new Chilterns blog, A Year in the Chilterns.
The featured image of a male yellowhammer is by Andreas Trepte. The audio is from the website, Sharing Bird sounds from around the world.