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Investigations ::> Bird life at Court

Bird Life at Court


 The most ubiquitous bird at Court is the jackdaw. Originally, jackdaws were to be found nesting on rocky outcrops and sea-cliffs, so Court, with its high stone walls and ivy covered chimneys, is ideal habitat for them. There are about 15 nesting pairs here, and they can always be seen flying around the place, uttering their distinctive ‘chack’ call, which gives them their name. Jackdaws (in Welsh jac-y-do) are members of the crow family, and on close inspection, are extremely smart-looking birds, with their black and grey plumage and white ring around the eye. Their favourite nesting site is an old chimney; they gather twigs and drop them into the chimney stack until a platform for their nest is created. This made them extremely unpopular birds in the past, as blocked chimneys could cause house fires! If you examine the fireplaces at Court, you will see that some of them are stuffed with twigs - the one in the kitchen is a prime example.

the jackdaw corvus monedula bird

 Another visiting bird at Court is the barn owl, (tylluan wen in Welsh). Barn owls are extremely beautiful-looking birds. Barn owls, as their name suggests, like to nest in barns, and they are becoming rare as so many redundant farm buildings are being converted into dwellings, resulting in habitat loss. We have been given an owl box, (which awaits fixing on the barn), so that when our barn is restored, the barn owls still have a home. It is thrilling to see the owls, as they fly silently past, emitting their eerie cries. The rough areas of grassland and scrub around the Court are ideal hunting territory for the owls. Barn owls are popular birds, as their chief prey is rats, and they control the numbers of these rodents especially when they are feeding their young.


 There are many other species of birds to be seen at Court, including robins, blackbirds, thrushes, wrens, chaffinches, sparrows and tits. We are delighted that Court is a safe haven for them all. One bird that you might expect to see is the redstart, as their favourite nesting place is a high stone wall, but I have yet to see evidence of them at Court. If you see one, let me know!