Over the past couple of years I’ve noticed an increase in the number of Bullfinches on my local patch. I’m not sure whether there are actually more or whether I just notice them more often because UK Bullfinch populations have declined by 36% since 1967.
Now that I can recognise their song I’m also hearing them a lot more.
Did any one hear the clip on Radio 4 with Tim Birkhead, who talked about and played recordings of a Bullfinch that had been trained to whistle? It was amazing to listen to how well they can memorise and whistle back a melody.
Bullfinches feed on insects, berries, seeds and buds. The ones I’m noticing at the moment are feeding on blackberries.
You can see that one of the Bullfinches has scales on his legs that could be as a result of mites or it might be due to the fringilla papillomavirus which causes wart like growths.
The other appears to have a tick or growth next to his eye.