Weekend Twitchr walk

Thanks to everyone who came along to the Twitchr walk on Saturday – it was a wonderful and enjoyable experience – and the starlings certainly did not disappoint! It was a beautiful day, and  fantastic to have Tony Whitehead with us who gave us plenty of interesting facts not only about the starlings, but many other birds we came across on the way, along with some of the history of the somerset levels and the work of the RSPB. We were also joined by Richard Barnard, a composer who works with transcriptions of birdsong – and many interesting conversations circulated around the group, and I even managed to make some cranberry flapjacks to pass around too. Some top facts that I can remember… many of the Starling flock will have travelled over from Northern Europer and Scandinavia to spend a milder winter in the UK; starlings do their ‘murmuration’ at dusk to generate a bit of heat before they roost, and also as a signal to other starlings that – ‘This is the Place! – Get Over HERE!’… and therefore the flock gets bigger and bigger and one of the main functions of them all getting together en masse is for information sharing. New birds joining the flock will look out for the healthy well fed birds, and then follow them in the morning to find out where the good food is.

Aswell as 600 000 Starlings, we were amazed at the amount of people who turned up to watch – must have been aout 150, just at the spot we were at. Luckily – the view of the sky is always good, no matter how tall the person in front of you is! We wondered if the starlings are fascinated by the strange behaviour of the humans who travel from miles around to stand together at dusk at this time of year… they have no idea why they do it – but it certainly is worth getting together to have a look….The huge gathering of humans might have also had something to do with the Starling flock being featured on Autumn Watch last Thursday…. (still on iplayer).

here are some pics…

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