This chaffinch is not the same as the others; It’s a friendly little fella; perching on the edge of my picnic table in patient expectation. Birds in public parks are often ‘friendly’ as they have learned that, wherever humans go, food will surely follow. The artful arrangement of blue-gray and rusty-brown-ochre hues in this bird’s war-paint indicates it’s the male of the species. The most colourful birds of a feather are usually male. Hard-luck ladies; better luck next evolution.

Toss the bread!

The chaffinches waste no time snapping up the scattered crumbs of golden sourdough with their greedy little beaks. In an acrobatic flurry of farts, belches, whistles and fluttering wings, they hasten back into the lemonwoods, before the summer-sun can scald the beaks off of their pretty little faces. The birds then burst into glorious song, reciting gruesome murder ballads as they plot the demise of countless flying insects in the hours of dusk to come.

Photo credit: Charlesjsharp • CC BY-SA 3.0


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