I remember Christmas trees,
Baubles, lights and flames
And trying to make sleep come
The night that Santa came.
Lying in my bed and
Waiting for the sound
Of Santa and his reindeer
Landing on the ground!
And holding in the fear!
Then peeping out the window,
Is he coming here?
Berries hang in clusters now,
Plump and ripe on every bough.
Birds around take what’s there
First come first served, there’s none to spare.
The clock ticks on and always will
But without a clock we know time still:
Berries, leaves and freezing days.
Nature speaks in many ways.
Light, dark, sun and shade
So many visions she displays.
Watch and learn, she’s there to teach,
Her wisdom’s there for all to reach.
Jean K Cave
WOODBOROUGH BADMINTON CLUB
The Tuesday Evening Badminton Club at Woodborough Village Hall are looking to recruit a couple of new players. There’s no need to feel intimidated – the standard is not very high! We play most Tuesdays from about 8.15pm to around 9.30pm.
If you would like to give it a go, please ring Andrew on 07948 729577 and leave a message containg your name and phone number – men, women, young and not-so-young are all welcome.
Song Thrush by John Harding Redwing by Jeff Kew
Mistle Thrush by Peter Howlett Fieldfare by Jill Packenham
Know Your Thrushes
In Great Britain we have three resident members of the Thrush family. They are the Blackbird, Mistle Thrush and Song Thrush. We are all familiar with the Blackbird but the other two birds can be difficult to tell apart. During winter, identification is further complicated by the arrival of two more species of the Thrush family and these are the Fieldfare and Redwing. These two species come over here from Scandinavia.
The following descriptions should be able to help you identify all four thrushes.
The Mistle Thrush is the largest of the four birds. It has a cold, greyish-brown back and its brown breast spots which are on a white background, are larger and bolder. When seen flying, you will notice it shows white under the wings. This large thrush is often found in more open areas such as parks and large gardens. It flies around, landing on tall trees and TV aerials making itself known with a loud “chack chack chack.”
The Fieldfare is slightly smaller than the Mistle Thrush. It has a grey head and nape, a chestnut brown back, a yellowish tinged speckled breast and a black tail. They are usually quite noisy, especially when in flocks, and make a chattering call as they fly about. They are often accompanied by the smaller Redwing.
The Song Thrush has a warm brown back and the speckles on its breast are smaller and fewer than that of the Mistle Thrush. They look like arrowheads on a buff coloured background and become more elongated and rounded on the belly and flanks. Unlike the feisty Mistle Thrush, the Song Thrush is a shy bird and is more likely to be seen in smaller gardens.
The Redwing is the smallest of the four thrushes and it has a brown back and tail, rusty red flanks and under-wings (hence the name) and a buff-white stripe above its eyes. Both species fly around in large flocks sometimes with their own kind and sometimes in mixed–species groups.
Normally, Fieldfare and Redwing frequent open woodland, farmland, and hedgerows. Quite often you will see flocks of them on the higher branches of tall trees. If the weather takes a turn for the worse they may be attracted to your garden especially if you have any Yew, Rowan, Hawthorn, Holly, Pyracantha or Cotoneaster.
Jean is a voluntary Ambassador for the British Trust for Ornithology’s Garden BirdWatch scheme in Nottinghamshire. If you enjoy watching birds and other wildlife which visit your garden, Garden BirdWatch may be perfect for you. If you would like a free information pack about the scheme, contact Jean at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.bto.org/gbw