A discursive look at Napoleonic & ECW wargaming, plus a load of old Hooptedoodle on this & that

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Hooptedoodle #174 - Oi! - Gerroff!

We take a great deal of pleasure from the birds in our garden, and some pictures of them have been posted here in the past. Our previous bird-feeding gantry collapsed last year (rust and gale-force winds), so we have a stronger and more complicated one now.

One feature is an elevated gauze tray to allow ground-feeding birds that are not comfortable hanging onto a nut feeder or sitting on a seed perch (primarily blackbirds, chaffinches, robins) to eat from a flat container which is safely away from the neighbourhood cats.

Common (Mongolian Ring-Necked) Pheasant - south east Scotland
 - not supposed to be up there
The tray is clearly stronger than I would have thought, but it is not designed for great, greedy oafs like this chap! At the time of his visit, the tray contained mostly spilled niger seeds from the containers above. A niger seed is only just visible if you have decent eyesight - not unlike one of the commas in this post - any idea how many would make a snack for a cock pheasant weighing about 1.25Kg?

He didn't stay long, and lumbered off to continue his normal hoovering of the woodland floor.


  1. This exact type of pheasant used to be very common in SE Pennsylvania when i was a child, teenage, and young man living there. Alas, the Pennsylvania Department of Natural Resources no longer stocks them, so they are a much rarer (ahem) bird than once was the case.

    Best regards,


    1. Hi Stokes - there are stacks of them here. I live on a farm, and the part of the farm where my house is was a sporting estate at one time - the farm owners still buy in chicks to grow on for the shooting which takes place around Christmas. Only licensed guns, of course! :-)

      I understand that nearly all of the pheasants in the UK are descended from a very small number imported centuries ago, so they are inbred to a very considerable degree, and this must have an effect on their mental abilities. Dumb animals hardly describes them. In particular the females forget where they have laid their eggs (to the joy of hedgehogs and mice) and have no idea which direction to run when they think they are in danger. A group of 2 or 3 females together on the farm lane is a major hazard when driving - you have no clue what they are going to do. Whatever it is, it will not be sensible.

      Regards - Tony