As I occasionally note, I tend to learn new things on a regular basis now that I am a country dweller full time. And today, it's all been about birds.
Firstly, I have been reminded that, if you leave an opportunity for our feathered friends, they will take it. I was somewhat surprised by a close range blur from an unexpected quarter. On closer inspection, a hole in a porch (not ours, I hasten to add) has been colonised by starlings, or 'feathered rats', as Richard, our builder refers to them. And, it seems, they're pretty noisy. It just shows that you really do need to keep an eye on a house, especially out here in the country.
With the weather having been relatively benign today, Ros has been in the garden, whilst I've been pottering about. And there's been a lot of birdsong, some of it remarkably loud. We noticed that a blackbird had been disappearing behind our oil tank and, curious, I took a closer look, only to find a fledgling on the ground, crying loudly.
Alright, I thought, I ought to do something. But what? I asked Ros, whose advice was to try entering "What do you do with a fledgling?" into Google. So, I did. And, for those of you who are confronted with such a problem, here's the official answer;
So, I've left it alone. Only time will tell, I suppose...Young garden birds usually leave the nest about two weeks after hatching - just before they can fly. If you find a young bird out of its nest, it is probably a fledgling. Fledglings are almost fully feathered, able to walk, run and hop on to low branches, and will try to hide in undergrowth where they are fed by their parents. Parent birds are not usually far away and are probably collecting food but will not return until you have gone. Within a day of leaving the nest, fledglings can usually fly enough to keep up with their parents and escape predators.Only move them, or encourage them to move, a short distance to safety if they are in immediate danger. If you have picked up a fledgling, put it back as near as possible to the place you found it. Don't try to return a fledgling to its nest as you may disturb other young birds. If you are concerned about its safety try to put it nearby on a ledge, or somewhere it will be out of the reach of cats. Monitor the situation from afar (otherwise your presence may continue to discourage the return of the parents) for at least two hours. You will almost certainly find that the parents have taken care of their youngster.