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Bullfinches in the birches
Bullfinches in the birches 24 March 2017

Birch is a pioneer species and has tiny seeds which float on the wind so it is able to colonise new ground quickly. It is the dominant tree in the glades and woodland edges at Hembury Woods, Buckfast where I spend many hours watching long-tailed tits over the winter. Each year the birches attract several bullfinches which come to feed on the seeds. Last winter was exceptional with about 20 birds in small flocks scattered across the woods. They are shy and easily disturbed by the numerous dog walkers so it took a while before I found a few quiet spots where I could sketch them.