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Unsprung need more wildlife questions, stories, photos and objects

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Jeremy Torrance web producer Jeremy Torrance web producer | 14:29 UK time, Friday, 3 June 2011

With one Springwatch Unsprung down and two left to go the team are still keen to get more of your fantastic stories, questions and images ready for the next show.

Here's a personal message from The Unsprung team.


Unsprung inbox

The Unsprung inbox is precariously close to another very important box in the office.
We definitely don't want the contents mixing!

Hi everyone,

We are LOVING the energy and excitement with which you’ve been sending in your letters, comments, ideas, objects, poo, bones, feathers and things!

We’ve got so many ideas flying around that we can barely move for Martin’s notes covering our desks; Level-headed Joe’s working flat out to keep them in order.

But the thing is, we want more! More questions, more stories, more mail that we have to lather ourselves in antibacterial handwash after opening!

You can send us your questions and stories for Unsprung by commenting below on this blog post, add your photos to the Photo group and here is an address for "things": BBC Springwatch, Broadcasting House, Whiteladies Road, Bristol BS8 2LR.

If you missed last week's Unsprung, you can watch it again on iPlayer.

Update 7 June: how to tell the difference between a bee and a wasp, when is it too late for a wren to lay eggs, and how to make your cat wildlife-friendly... Find the answers to these and more here.

Comments

Page 8 of 12

  • Comment number 701.

    Hi
    was just having a coffee with the wife this afternoon in the conservatory,and noticed a blackbird making her nest in our hedge right in front of us.is this not to late for them,we thought they nested much earlier on?

    regards to all from kevin & jackie bellchambers, new forest ,hampshire....

  • Comment number 702.

    After seeing the Osprey on Springwatch I was inspired to finally go and see them myself at Rutland water. I saw the male fishing and the female feeding their three chicks and it was fantastic even though it rained all day!
    It made me wonder though how Osprey find fish and if it becomes more difficult when rain is disturbing the surface of the water?

  • Comment number 703.

    pauly 689 Thank you thank you thank you!! I'll give it a try.

    Anybody, Why isn't the followup to Autumnwatch called Unautumned?

  • Comment number 704.

    Hi Springwatch Team,
    I live in Bristol and earlier today i saw two RING NECKED PARAKEETS flying around in the trees near my local park! Please let me know what you think about it, i thought they were only found around London and the Southeast?!
    Thankyou,
    Rachel.

  • Comment number 705.

    Hi Springwatch Team,
    I live in Bristol and earlier today i saw two RING NECKED PARAKEETS flying around in the trees near my local park! Please let me know what you think as i thought they were only living in London and the south east?!
    Thanks, Rachel.

  • Comment number 706.

    Hi All

    Was having a coffee with the wife this afternoon in the conservatory when we noticed a blackbird building her nest in the hedge right in front of us, is this not to late for nest building,we thought that they would have nested more early on?

    kind regards kevin & jackie bellchambers, new forest, southampton....

  • Comment number 707.

    pauly 689 Diddit, and there it is...for what it's worth.

  • Comment number 708.

    I have an unusual poo found on a high roof in south east London see my photos on flicker. Help can anyone tell me what animal left this? Its high up on a town house roof with no access for a 4 legged animal, could it be some type of bird, I think to solid for a bird.

  • Comment number 709.

    I have an unusual poo found on a high roof in south east London see my photos on flicker. Help can anyone tell me what animal left this? Its high up on a town house roof with no access for a 4 legged animal, could it be some type of bird, I think to solid for a bird. How can I post a picture here for my question?

  • Comment number 710.

    hello We love your programme and always watch
    My Question is what can I do about Bees that have set up home in a nest box which usually home Blue Tits , the bees seem to be gradually pushing out the nesting material, I notice the Bee activity about a month ago , there seems to be a comb in the making , so can you advise me please , the box is below the Bathroom window !

  • Comment number 711.

    I know you have now finished with Skomer but I was wondering if the island still runs the Puffin Pal Scheme in which you can sponsor a puffin. I have been sponsoring one since 1997 after falling in love with Skomer and it's inhabitants when I visited the island on a beautiful sunny day. I couldn't believe how close you could get to the puffins and how unafraid they were of humans.

    The last report I have of the puffins is 2008 in which my puffin was listed as being sighted. I was amazed to learn that it was at least 30 years old and one of the oldest puffins there to be recorded!

    It is a great scheme and I wondered why Springwatch didn't give it a plug. Is it still going? I do think you should mention it.

    I so enjoy Springwatch and wish it was 'All Year Watch'!

    Brenda George

  • Comment number 712.

    Thank you to Springwatch. All it took was one email to you (but no reply) asking what I needed to do to get birds on my bird feeder. It seems that sending the email was the answer as on the day I sent the mail I started getting Goldfinch appearing on the Nyger seed.

  • Comment number 713.

    Hi Springwatch
    Can you possibly explain some behaviour for me. We have a pair of Goldfinch visit us on a regular basis. We also have a juvenile Goldfinch which we believe is the offspring of the adult pair. The feeder which contains the Nyger seed has four perches but the adults will not allow their offspring onto a perch and force it to ground to feed alone there. Is this normal? Is this a way of teaching the youngster its time to fend for yourself?

  • Comment number 714.

    Hi team, sorry if you get this twice, my machine is playing up. My son has just arrived in from the drive with a beetle about 3cm long with a brown shell case and a black underside. The side of the undersides have small white triangular shapes where it meets the brown shell and it has a "stinger" tail end shape. There are some photos on the flicker site. Can anyone tell what type it is as we have never seen one in Telford or anywhere else for that mattter!! Thanks for any help anyone could give. Martin, where have the glasses gone dude?

  • Comment number 715.

    Hi team, sorry if you get this twice, my machine is playing up. My son has just arrived in from the drive with a beetle about 3cm long with a brown shell case and a black underside. The side of the undersides have small white triangular shapes where it meets the brown shell and it has a "stinger" tail end shape. There are some photos on the flicker site. Can anyone tell what type it is as we have never seen one in Telford or anywhere else for that mattter!! Thanks for any help anyone could give. Martin, where have the glasses gone dude?

    Regards
    Graham, Lewis, Ryan & Penny

  • Comment number 716.

    Two questions and two comments please guys - and thanks for another amazing season of Springwatch:
    Q1 - in the first week there was a young lad on the show assembling skeletons for display and he commented that one fox he used had been sprayed with shotgun pellets. I have heard it said down here in the WC (that's the West Country!) that some farmers are shooting foxes on their land (legal) and badgers (illegal) and then throwing them over the hedges into the roads to make it look like they are road kill. Have you ever heard of this?? Do you think it is 'naughty'?
    Q2 - I cannot guarantee that these bird species are correct as it was a fleeting glimpse: I have often seen two or three rooks attacking a much larger buzzard, but I am sure that this week I saw what looked like a pied flycatcher chasing off a rook or crow; it was very agitated, chirping loudly and flying very quickly as it chased the larger bird off. Was I dreaming or have any of you seen anything similar?
    SPOT 1: Yesterday (Sunday) I saw my first greenfinches for what must be 25 years; they were on a friend's feeder.
    SPOT 2: but more important - today (Monday) I heard my first cuckoo for what must be 15 years; I was not at home, where I used to hear them every year, but three miles away - and it got me quite excited to hear it once again!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Thanks again folks for a great show.

  • Comment number 717.

    Hey all, loving the show, was wondering if you could answer a question for me?
    This year i invested in a nesting box, which was inhabited within days of being putting up with a pair of blue tits, they had four chicks which have now fled the nest, the question is; is there a need to clean out nesting boxes each year to either disinfect them or just clean out old nesting material, or are they best left?

    Cheers Matt

  • Comment number 718.

    It doesn't look like the owlets will be fledging anytime soon. Will the cameras be left on until they do?

  • Comment number 719.

    It doesn't look like the owlets will be fledging anytime soon. Will the cameras be left on until they do?

  • Comment number 720.

    Wasps have taken over my empty blue tit box,almost plugged the hole and are flying in and out. Should I leave them until winter comes and then clean out the box when they have gone?

  • Comment number 721.

    I only have anecdotal evidence but I have noticed an increase in the chaffinch, bullfinch, house sparrow and honeybee this year. Has anyone else reported such increases ? What is going on?

    I'm even more surprized given the unseasonal spring and early summer.

  • Comment number 722.

    Superb barn owl and kingfisher film - BBC wildlife cameramen of the future?

  • Comment number 723.

    Hi everyone, Last year we were on holiday in the yorkshire dales when we heard this imense screaming, we looked over the nearest wall to see 2 kestrals, one had the other one pinned to the ground, after a few seconds they released each other and one flew off onto the wall. This was september last year, is this normal behaviour and why were they trying to "kill" each other.?

  • Comment number 724.

    saw a bird today about the size of a mistle thrush it had a orange body black wings enyybody know what the bird was

  • Comment number 725.

    We have had a male and femaile mallard on our pond over the spring. The female disappeared for long periods and then came back with 5 chicks. Unfortunately, the chicks disappeared the next day. The female disappeared for a few weeks and occasionally came back but today came back and landed on our pond with a duck egg in her beak. The egg was clearly fertilised and as she landed she dropped the egg. What would cause her to fly with an egg in such a way? We think this has happened before as we found an egg in the pond but we thought another bird had stolen it.

  • Comment number 726.

    Hi everyone, can you tell me please, do we have a problem with bats? we havent seen any since last september.

  • Comment number 727.

    We have been getting a black bird in our garden which is covered in white markings is this unusual

  • Comment number 728.

    There are 4 turtles in the lake in Calderstones Park, Liverpool, the largest is about 18 inches to 2 feet, they emerge from the lake onto a log whenever the sun comes out. At the beginning of spring we had several families of ducklings and goslings then they gradually vanished, could the turtles have eaten them? I uploaded a photo onto your flicker site around 3rd June.

  • Comment number 729.

    Dear Springwatch Team,

    This year My Dad and Myself put up a birdbox on the side of our Semi-Detached house in Weston-Super-Mare. About 2 Months ago we spotted 2 Blue Tits gathering materials for a nest in the box, in the first 2 weeks they were happily going in and out of the box every 20 mins or so. Then at about 4-5 weeks they suddenly just disapeared, i decided to set up my video camera to make sure they were not going into the box when they was nobody about, however there were still no sightings. After this conclusion my Dad went up the ladder and looked inside and there was a nicely established nest. This Puzzled Us..

    Why Have they Just decided to leave this nest?
    Could we have done something to disrupt them into leaving the nest?
    And Where else could we put it next year?

    We have a 15 ft tree in the front garden.
    The front garden is used less by the family.

  • Comment number 730.

    Q. Why are Bumblebees less affected by the Verroa mite than their Honeybee cousins?

  • Comment number 731.

    Dear Springwatch Team,

    This year My Dad and Myself put up a birdbox on the side of our Semi-Detached house in Weston-Super-Mare. About 2 Months ago we spotted 2 Blue Tits gathering materials for a nest in the box, in the first 2 weeks they were happily going in and out of the box every 20 mins or so. Then at about 4-5 weeks they suddenly just disapeared, i decided to set up my video camera to make sure they were not going into the box when they was nobody about, however there were still no sightings. After this conclusion my Dad went up the ladder and looked inside and there was a nicely established nest. This Puzzled Us..

    Why Have they Just decided to leave this nest?
    Could we have done something to disrupt them into leaving the nest?
    And Where else could we put it next year?

    We have a 15 ft tree in the front garden.
    The front garden is used less by the family.

  • Comment number 732.

    Dear Springwatch/Unsprung,
    Thank you for another fab series. I have a question regarding Swallows. Each year we have a pair of swallows nesting in our stables, yet each year they fail to raise a healthy brood. This year the female laid 6 eggs, they all hatched, 2 died shortly after hatching, 3 fell/were pushed out of the nest when they were starting to get their adult feathers, and i found the final one dead on the floor a few days later. This happens every year! The nest seems very small and as soon as the chicks are a few days old they start struggling for room, standing on each other and up on the rim of the nest, i think this is why they fall out. What can i do to help? I had wondered about removing the old nest in the winter and putting a shelf up so the chicks only fall a few centimeters, would this help? Thank you, Emma

  • Comment number 733.

    Bumble bees -just seen your piece about the bumble bees on the land fill site. My husband 'JT' is refusing to cut the lawn at the moment as he loves to see the bees bobbing around the clover in our lawn. Is he really doing the bees a favour by not mowing the lawn....or is he just trying to get out of mowing. Please help solve a nature versus domestic argument at Taylor Towers. Thank you from Sue in Lincoln.

  • Comment number 734.

    Dear All,
    There are swallows that nest every year in our stables, but each year they loose the chicks. I think it is mainly because the nest is too small and they lay large clutches (up to 9 eggs). Would it be beneficial to remove the nest and put up a shelf for them to rebuild on next year, so that they may build a bigger nest, or at least the chicks won't have so far to fall! It is distressing seeing them and their chicks fail every year. Help! Emma

  • Comment number 735.

    My mother inlaw has had some bumble bees nesting in a birdbox and went on holiday last week. When she came back on Saturday there was no bee activity.
    I called in on Sunday and opened the box which was full of silk thread. There were some small moths and loads of largish grubs.
    The base of the box contained some moss and carfully prising the moss open found the very sedate bees including the queen, only just alive.
    An internet search suggests the Wax moth, any other suggestions and possible treatment?
    Can they be saved,
    Ken.

  • Comment number 736.

    Hello Springwatch team. I was wondering if you could answer a question. We have several Dunnocks in our garden but this evening I saw some very odd behaviour. Two Dunnocks were on the ground 'dancing' around each other. I thought at first that it was two males in a territorial dispute. However, one then stood behind the other and started pecking at the other ones bottom. The one being pecked at seemed quite happy with this as it stood there and lifted its tail up. They did this for about half a minute! Any ideas what was going on? I have heard stories of male Dunnocks, removing the sperm from females who have recently mated with another male before he then mates, but always thought this was an old wives tale. Has anybody else heard this?

  • Comment number 737.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 738.

    have a blackbird covered with white markings anyone else seen one,

  • Comment number 739.

    I live just down the woods from Kate in Tintern and regularly feed the birds. We've had lots of blue tits; Great tits; Sparrows; Green and Gold Finches; Black Caps and even a Siskin, and a Pheasant! But the icing on the cake was looking out of my kitchen window this evening when I came face to face with a peacock! I'd heard that two were seen 3.5 miles away last week in Llandogo, but I didn't catch sight of the other one today. Look out Kate, he(?) was last seen heading up Chapel Hill! I have put a photo on the Group - is it a young male?

  • Comment number 740.

    I live in Tintern, down the woods from Kate, and was surprised to see a Peacock in my garden. I'd heard that two were seen last week 3.5 miles away in Llandogo, but I only saw one tonight. Escapees do you think? Has anyone lost any? I have put a photo on the Group - is it a young male?

  • Comment number 741.

    Please can you do something to protect that severely endangered creature, the English language? How are budding naturalists supposed to know that "lamprey" is pronounced "lamp-ree" rather than "lamp-ray" if even the experts don't say it correctly?

  • Comment number 742.

    Hi Team, I noticed some wasps going in and out of my daughter's playhouse at the end of our garden today and discovered there is a large wasp nest in the middle of the ceiling (she doesn't use it any more). Should we destroy the nest with wasp killer - I know Chris wouldn't want us to do that - or leave it well alone. I am concerned that if we leave it there we may be troubled with lots of wasps in the garden later this summer.

    Many thanks for your help,
    Linda Legge, Thakeham, West Sussex

  • Comment number 743.

    Seeing your article on bees tonight has prompted me to ask you to solve a domestic quarrel between my husband Jonathan and I. He is refusing to cut our clover covered lawn because he says he doesn't want to upset the bees. Who is getting the best part of the deal? Is it the bees with all that lovely clover or my husband for not having to mow the lawn?

  • Comment number 744.

    This week shows wildlife in the Pitsea landfill site. I noticed a lot of plastic and packaging which I would have thought was potentially harmful to animals. Is there much evidence of this?

  • Comment number 745.

    Hi spring watch, can you tell me what may have happened to our house martins. We have lived here for 10 years and every year had 3 or more familys. but last year we only had one, and this year none at all. Also there used to be Canada geese stopping off for a rest, and over the years they too have declined so much that we never see them any more. Whats going on???

  • Comment number 746.

    Well another great start to the week springwatch team,Yknow I`ve a little theory about the blackbird at the warblers nest and it may seem a little bizarre but have a think about it a while if you would.If you listen to the soundtrack again you can just about make out a greater spotted woodpecker calling and if you`ve ever watched a parent when its near its own chicks and one starts calling you`ll they have the instinct to guard or cover them.My theory is simply this the blackbird felt a slightly misplaced sense of protectivness towards the young in the nest and for a minute or two and almost could`nt leave them vulnerable,obviously it knew it was`nt it own babies but,parents of all species can often fixate on babies of others.Take our own females talking about baby foxes and hedgehogs....reinstate disbelief...end

  • Comment number 747.

    Hi,
    I was watching the owlet webcam tonight and one of the owlets was sighing really loudly-or exhaling really loudly. Can you explain this please?

  • Comment number 748.

    As a trainee teacher,Many years ago I studied caddis flies and as you showed was fascinated by their ability to make their cases. I built a tank of Dexion and glass fibre and a motorised gentle stream. Over the year I introduced them to many substances with amazing results. i.e. tiny coloured glass beads, broken eggshells. fragments of material and even metal filings all of which they used for encasement. The worst failure was dried rice which they used snd because it swelled after a while it squeezed them to death. OOps. lesson learned. I wish I had then the digital advanced photography that is available now !

    HAWFINCH STORY
    -. A few years ago there was great excitement when a hawfinch arrived in nearby Paignton. Its rarity got the twitchers twitching and an article in the nature spot in the local paper. I had certainly never seen one,,,,,until a few days later there was a loud thud against my bay window and sadly a hawfinch had died having flown into it. It was beautiful. I can only think that it saw its own reflection

  • Comment number 749.

    Hi Everyone
    Waiting in a Supermarket indoor car park today, I noticed a Ferral Pigeon wrestling with a long twig. After a while, he flew up to a narrow frame around an advertisement and deposited the twig beside his mate who was nesting on the tiny ledge. I would never have seen her had it not been for the antics of her mate.
    I was taken by his attentiveness as he stayed so close by, down on the ground. avoiding people who were walking past with their shopping. When chased by a young lad he took up a perch on the nearest car. Photo available
    (Wild Life viewing in London :)
    Thanks to the Team for a great programme. What will we do till Autumn?

  • Comment number 750.

    There are several comments regarding the bad behaviour of the crow family, including mine, where my house and garden are invaded by vastly increasing numbers of jackdaws, and asking for ideas as to how I can deter them (same problem with wood pigeons) BUT NOBODY IS ANSWERING! Help, please, before I have to sell up and move!

  • Comment number 751.

    Dear All, I have a question regarding swallows. Each year a pair of swallows nest in our stables, but each year they fail to successfully raise a brood. The female lays up to 9 eggs, they generally all hatch, and then I spend the next 10 days finding dead chicks on the floor. I think the nest may be too small, would it be sensible to remove the nest in the winter and put up a shelf so that they may build a better nest, or at least the chicks won't have so far to fall! The parents are continuing to bring food in and seem distressed that they have lost all their chicks, so i don't think it is a lack of parenting skills. Please help, any ideas welcome! Emma

  • Comment number 752.

    I live in Tintern and was surprised to see a Peacock in my garden yesterday evening. I had heard that two were sighted in a nearby village 3.5 miles away last week, but I only saw one. He headed off in Kate's direction up Chapel Hill! I have put a photo on the Group - is it a young male? Are they ecapees? Has anyone in the area lost two Peacocks?

  • Comment number 753.

    Hi there, We live in Perth, Scotland and have had 2 successful housemartin nests in our eaves for past 10 years. However this year something has attacked the nests making a very large hole in each nest taking the eggs and chicks. Any idea what it may have been and if the housemartins are likely to return to these nests? We miss them :(

  • Comment number 754.

    Hi Springwatch Team,

    How is it that animals such as foxes and gulls can scavange food from land-fill that would make us humans ill, or possibly even kill us?

    Steve Gunard
    Chesterfield

  • Comment number 755.

    Dear Team,

    How is it that animals such as foxes and gulls can scavange food from landfill sites that would make us humans ill, or even kill us?

    Steve Gunard
    Chesterfield

  • Comment number 756.

    Hi, My local blackbird includes imitation of an ambulance, a car alarm and a wolf whistle and what sounds like chuckling in his glorious song. Says a lot about the area I live in! Do birds include sounds from other animals in their song and is it possible to identify those sounds?

  • Comment number 757.

    Bees may be disappearing in parts of the country but not, I suggest, here in Winchester. Whilst walking by the lime trees, by the Cathedral last night there was an audible hum. In our own road at 11am there is again an audible hum (providing that no cars are passing by) from the lime trees.

    Is it unusual to hear such an aubile hum and how many bees do you think could be visiting each tree.

    Michael Fielding

  • Comment number 758.

    During early springtime we had mystery. We could hear a bird song which ended with what sounded like a frog croaking. It only lasted about 5 weeks and happened last year as well. We live on the edge of Bishopstoke Wood in Hampshire but the sound was coming from some other trees nearer our home. (Not in the wood itself). Please help before next year comes and we're left puzzled once again! Love to all! ps...more Itchy & Scratchy please....

  • Comment number 759.

    During early springtime we had mystery. We could hear a bird song which ended with what sounded like a frog croaking. It only lasted about 5 weeks and happened last year as well. We live on the edge of Bishopstoke Wood in Hampshire but the sound was coming from some other trees nearer our home. (Not in the wood itself). Please help before next year comes and we're left puzzled once again! Love to all! ps...more Itchy & Scratchy please....

  • Comment number 760.

    During early springtime we had mystery. We could hear a bird song which ended with what sounded like a frog croaking. It only lasted about 5 weeks and happened last year as well. We live on the edge of Bishopstoke Wood in Hampshire but the sound was coming from some other trees nearer our home. (Not in the wood itself). Please help before next year comes and we're left puzzled once again! Love to all! ps...more Itchy & Scratchy please....

    Complain about this comment (Comment number 1)

  • Comment number 761.

    Feeding the birds this morning I suddenly realised i don't think I have seen a wren for ages. I always used to have wrens in the garden - are they getting less in numbers?

  • Comment number 762.

    Hi 'team', I have just returned from a walk with my dog,Molly, to No. 6 swing bridge on the Pocklington canal, close to my home. After sitting quietly for a while I notices Molly sniffing something on the landing stage, it looks like otter spraint so I have brought it home to photograph and forward to you.
    then at 10am I saw a barn owl hunting alongside the canal over the watermeadow, close to the village school!
    THEN as I got up to go I caught sight of what I thought was a 'cat' swimming across the canal and realised it could be a 'young otter'!!!
    come on you guys, why not visit my part of the world and get some wonderful wildlife experiences

  • Comment number 763.

    Dear Springwatch Team, We have a caravan on a North Wales site in Chwilog, near Pwllheli. There is a lake in front of the caravan and over the years we have watched cygnets, goslings, moorhens and many ducklings grow. This year however, we saw the arrival of about 25 goslings in 2 families and watched them over 2 weekends, but they have disappeared, one weekend they were here, then we came back on the Thursday and nada all gone, also we have only seen 2 ducklings this year and hardly any moorhen chicks, in fact I don't think I have seen the moorhens for a couple of weekends, I know the seagulls take them, but there are usually more around. We believe there is now an otter family as well, they are quite large in size from what people have said. My questions are - would otters eat the young or do they just take fish, and I know the swan takes exception to the geese but he usually takes it out on the male parents, would he kill the goslings? Basically, any idea where the young have gone, we have only the 4 cygnets left on the lake. Also it is a fishing lake for the owners, there are ancient carp inhabiting it. We had a mink a couple of years ago but I believe it was caught.

  • Comment number 764.

    Hi All

    I'm really luck in my little town centre garden - I'm visited by an amazing variety of wildlife, a huge range of birds including goldfinch, bullfinch, tits in all shapes and sizes, nuthatch, jays, plus my resident hedgehog and even some young foxes, but for the first time in four years I had some sparrows in my garden yesterday. When I arrived home they were happily munching on the food in the ground feeder which is usually gobbled up by the robins as soon as I put it out! But last night, a lovely male sparrow and some young (I think). They might've popped in before when I've not been there, I suppose, but I doubt I'd've missed them for four years! Lovely...

  • Comment number 765.

    Hi team,

    I have many cats which I love but sadly the inevitable happens (thankfully not too often) and when they do catch something I always to my best to rescue the victim and nurse back to health - with much success. However I have a lovely little wood mouse who is fine except that one of his back legs is injured, I suspect broken. He is quite happy eating strawberries and nuts and stuff but it seems cruel to keep him in a small tub. Could he survive in the wild with a poorly leg or do I have another pet to add to my minagerie?
    LOVE THE PROGRAM
    Nicki (more commonly known as Nesbit - don't ask why!)

  • Comment number 766.

    Springwatch Team.

    I am a fairly keen Birdwatcher and go regularly at the moment, recording my sightings and observations and sites I visit throughout the year.

    From my recording I do have a question I would like to ask you and see if you have any more information or opinions which could explain my sightings. I have recorded around 20-25 pairs of Coots but only two pairs have been sucessful in producing fully fledged young and this has been broods of 1-2. This does not compare to my recording for the last few years.

    What reasons do you think there are for such a low sucess for Coots at my sites, is this a national issue or just at my sites? I have a feeling it could be the hot weather causing Crows etc... to prey on fledglings due to low amounts of other food but I would appreciate your feedback on this question.

    Many Thanks
    Freddy
    Northamptonshire.

  • Comment number 767.

    Hi Team

    A Question-- I often rescue victims of my cats and nurse them back to health. My latest is a lovely liitle wood mouse who is doing fine except that he has an injured back leg, I suspect broken. He is quite happy eating strawberries and nuts and stuff but it seems cruel to keep a wild animal in a cage. Could he survive back in the wild or do I have another pet to add to my ever increasing menagerie?
    Nicki, Fordingbridge in Hampshire

  • Comment number 768.

    b

  • Comment number 769.

    Hi Team,
    I have crows, may be jackdaws, dominating my bird feeder station. The little birds don't get a look in. Even if I take the food away for a day or two they come back and within minutes strip everything. Even the fat balls are eaten in minutes. They seem to tell each other that the food is out and then we get 8 to 10 attacking the feeders. Is there any advice you can give me on how I can stop this?

  • Comment number 770.

    Hi springwatch was at llangorse lake in gwent around 10.30 this morning when i saw a osprey, watch for about a hour then it disappeared. x

  • Comment number 771.

    Hi Team, enjoying the show as always!

    We have about 20 or so house sparrows that come to our garden to feed from our feeding station, they also feed off the ground, on all the bits of food that drop down.

    We also have a black bird that feeds on the food that drops on the floor and they all get on well together.

    But if we ever put any extra food on the ground the black bird goes mad. He gets very protective and chases the sparrows off. Surely you would think it would be the other way around, and he would get more protective when there was less food about, and not when there was more food??

  • Comment number 772.

    Hi here this one for you all, I play golf, I have been practising my chipping in my back garden, I put 20 old golf balls on my lawn, my garden is secluded, I went out to do some chipping on Saterday, and there was only 8 golf balls left, I went out today and there was only 2 (two) left , ( I didnt lose then in the bushes, or in the pond,) has anyone got any ideas what is happening to them we some times get a Vixon in the garden could this be what is taking them? , willspin.

  • Comment number 773.

    Just had to share this, today we have had two Little Owls in our garden. We've seen one on its own for the past three/four years but never two together. Hubby put a nestbox up a few days ago and one sat on it today.

    It's probably a bit late for this year but fingers crossed for next year.

  • Comment number 774.

    I thought that Unsprung might be interested in my shot of a Grey Heron in flight taken at Caldicot Castle Wildlife Conservation Area yesterday (13 JUN 11). It has teken me a long time to get a close up shot of this bird in flight. We get a wide range of wildlife at Caldicot Castle including all three UK snakes. I think that this heron maybe a juvenile as it was not as large as some that I have seen and photographed in the past. Herons are not resident at the castle only popping in from time to time so I was very lucky to be there at the right time.
    Thanks for another great series and can't wait for Autumnwatch.
    Please see my photo of the heron:

  • Comment number 775.

    I thought that Unsprung might be interested in my shot of a Grey Heron in flight taken at Caldicot Castle Wildlife Conservation Area yesterday (13 JUN 11). It has teken me a long time to get a close up shot of this bird in flight. We get a wide range of wildlife at Caldicot Castle including all three UK snakes. I think that this heron maybe a juvenile as it was not as large as some that I have seen and photographed in the past. Herons are not resident at the castle only popping in from time to time so I was very lucky to be there at the right time.
    Thanks for another great series and can't wait for Autumnwatch.

    Please see my photo of the heron:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/john-bennett/5832517068/
    It would really be fantastic if you could used this shot.

  • Comment number 776.

    Just noticed Raymonds note about Blackbirds with white markings. I dont think you are alone as I have a Blackbird that has a white mark on his head.

  • Comment number 777.

    I heard a tremendous hullabaloo outside, saw through the window one magpie on top of a song thrush plucking feathers from its back and scattering them to L&R, and 2 other magpies either side setting up a tremendous din matching the desperate cries of the thrush. I rushed outside yelling. Very reluctantly the attacking magpie let go and flew off after his 2 companioins. The thrush after about 10 minutes, walked unsteadily to shelter under a nearby shrub; then about 15 minutes later flew away a little slowly and looking patchily bare and dishevilledon its back, bu ALIVE! Kate - magpies DO go for song birds! This was in Somerset in the early 80s.

  • Comment number 778.

    WARNING!!! NEVER USE THIS KIND OF FAT BALL FEEDER!!!
    One of my fledgling bluetits obviously squeezed his way inside the fat ball feeder to get to the crumbs left at the bottom, then tried to get out from the bottom of the feeder where the bars narrow. Without the sense to exit up where he entered the poor creature strangled itself to death.

    Please, if you have this kind of feeder TAKE IT DOWN NOW. This all happened within minutes – I’d just replenished the seed feeder and had only gone back to the shed to get more fat balls and table top feed. By the time I came back it was too late. I’m devastated, so upset.

    Sorry, I have to paste the image of the feeder so you’ll be warned of its type, and I didn’t have the sense to take the body out before photographing, and I’ve already thrown the whole thing into the bottom of a dumpy bin (I can’t reach down to get it out).

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/61150239@N07/5833123728/

  • Comment number 779.

    Hello Martin and the Team,
    I would like to know what eats jays? In the woods where I walk my dogs there is a tree which often has piles of feathers underneath it, never any blood or other gruesome bits and only once a little bone.
    Does this mean there is a bird of prey plucking its kill in the tree?
    A couple of weeks ago there was a large amount of jay feathers, what would be eating and plucking a large bird like a jay and was this advance karma for eating wrens?
    Love the show

  • Comment number 780.

    i have a wildlife pond with lots of wonderful things in it. it gets covered in pond weed,and everytime i try to clear some of it i find so much life there; newts, beetles,snails,leeches,dragonfly nymphs..... should i leave the pond weed alone? it looks like it's choking the pond. what should i do?

  • Comment number 781.

    I have posted a photo of a nest made by an insect that is stuck to the roof of the shed. It is the shape of a spinning top and is about 3" across - would love someone to identify it please.

  • Comment number 782.

    Hi Springwatch team, this is a question I have been thinking about for some time. Some Chaffinches in Hyde Park, London, seem to have a fungal problem on their legs. I wonder what causes this and if anything can be done to prevent this from happening to these birds? Your answers would be most welcome. Many thanks
    Deborah Kelleher

  • Comment number 783.

    I saw a Lapwing bird today. First one I have seen in ages. Seen on Hartshead Pike near Oldham. Taken a few pictures but it is a shame this bird is rare to see now?

  • Comment number 784.

    Hi to everyone on the Springwatch team. Could someone please tell me what a 'May bug' is. We only get them flying around the garden during May, they are brown and about the size of a stag beetle with fluffy antennae and no pincers. They seem to be attracted to the light outside. By the way just seen a stag beetle walking across the grass!
    Also had long tailed tits in the garden at the start of spring but they have all disappeared. Any ideas???
    Thanks, good programme.

  • Comment number 785.

    hello Martin and the team i was doing the horse earlier the afternoon when i nearly stepped on a grass snake,i followed it very closely in to some thin grass when it disappeared.where did it go?

  • Comment number 786.

    I have a new Blackbird in the garden this year, who can do two versions of a wolf whistle, the first nine notes of the music to the Direct Line Add, and the sound of a burgalar alarm. Is this sort of thing common?

  • Comment number 787.

    My son, Oliver, found the skin of a grass snake, 3ft long and completely intact, in his grandad's compost heap. He would like to know if there is any way of preserving it as it is already becoming quite papery. Any ideas?

  • Comment number 788.

    Hi, on my stable yard we are suffering from an infestation of earwigs. There are thousands of them and they are getting every where. Why are there so many this year, is anyone else exeriencing this problem and how long are they likley to be around?

  • Comment number 789.

    hello martin and the team we were going to the horse today when mum nearly stepped on a grass snake. we followed it very closely in to some thin grass when it disappeared. we looked and looked for it but couldn't find it it looked like there was an old flattened mole hill. where did it go? Do they use old mole holes?
    we have had the field 6 years but never seen one how can we help them make home there? we live in what seems like a giant bird house as we have load pairs of sparrows and starlings. what sort of nest boxes should we put up and what position should they be in?

  • Comment number 790.

    hi strange question for you all need a bit of help would a green woodpecker mare with a great spotted woodpecker we have a woodpecker hole in a tree were we live it has chicks but not popping there heads out yet hence the question both the great and green woodpecker go to the hole but never go in to what we have seen early this morning the green woodpecker was with 4 great spotted woodpecker fledglings on a telephone pole it cant be the chics from the nest as they are not ready so would the 2 be mating or is there anouter reason for this thanks

  • Comment number 791.

    i have two questions for you.

    1) for my daughters biology test (in yr 7) she had to answer a couple of questions about worms. the teacher had no idea what the answer was and he hoped that his booklet had the answer. it didnt though. my question was: is it true that worms have five hearts.

    2)and is it the lack of rain thats causing our blackbirds to feed off the bird table?

  • Comment number 792.

    Hi all, Just wanted to let you all know about my neighbours. I live on the outskirts of an old mining village in the valleys and just above my house there is a disused quarry. Not great I know however there are currently 3 chicks and 2 adult falcon's nesting there! stunning to watch! They live in peace and quiet as hardly anybody knows about the site I feel very privilaged.

  • Comment number 793.

    I have two questions about swallows.
    A swallow returns to the nest in my stable each year. Would this be the adult male returning or one of last years chicks?
    Also, do swallows pair for life?
    Each year when a male returns, I get the impression he has to work hard to persuade a female to accept his nest in my stable.
    Not surprising when my horse uses the stable and I muck out each morning, often switching on the light.
    Last year they successfully raised two broods totalling 10 chicks.

  • Comment number 794.

    We had the joy of watching 2 young blackbirds from the moment of fledging this year. The parents continued to be extremely watchful and good teachers. However, we are intrigued to know, at what point do young birds begin to establish their own territories and could there be competition between them and their parents/siblings?

  • Comment number 795.

    Is it certain that the fox went into the bdager sett when it was carrying something? I thought I spotted it trotting off through the undergrowth to the left.

  • Comment number 796.

    Hi Team...this evening at 6pm, I saw 2 black ants dragging a fairly big bumblebee along the road. I couldn't see an ant's nest nearby and the bee looked like she was in some trouble..but she still had some movement. I know we shouldn't intervene but I am passionate about bees so I removed the ants (unharmed)..they were persistent in trying to get the bee back...I put her on a flower and on checking later, she was gone.Hope she survived.My question is...what was going on??? Were the ants going to eat her???

  • Comment number 797.

    Why do dippers `dip`??

  • Comment number 798.

    Hi Chris and Martin

    I have really enjoyed your boys weekend away part of the show this year and was wondering if we can have this repeated every year and maybe even in the autumn too!

  • Comment number 799.

    Hi Team,

    I was in Wales (Brecon) at the weekend and witnessed some strange bird behaviour I had certainly not seen, or heard of before. I spotted what looked like a pair of Buzzards, as they circled closer I realised it was in fact a Buzzard and a Red Kite. Rather than trying to scare / fight each other off, they appeared to be scavenging toegther. As I continued to observe another Buzzard joined them and then another Red Kite, so there was a pair of each. Then a stunning White Buzzard apeared, it looked like a fledgling but was much Whiter than usual, giving the appearance of a Snowy Owl from a distance. I watched as all 5 birds continued to scavenge over a field actively interacting then soaring around togther. Than an even stranger bird joined them, a Grey Heron. So there they were 5 raptors and a Grey Heron, in a group in the middle of a field. They continued to do so for around half an hour before flying off together. I presumed it was just coincidence and there was just plenty of food there for them so they tolerated each other. However a couple of hours later they all arrived back together in the same group after scavenging over other fields. Have any of you heard of or seen anything like this before, or is it as odd as I presumed it to be. I look forward to hearing anyones thoughts.

    Ash x

  • Comment number 800.

    how old can a baby owl be when it can produce pellets!
    thanks guys

 

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