NUTHATCH IN NUMBERS
Number of nuthatch species on the British List
Number of times Red-breasted Nuthatch has occurred in UK (Norfolk, 1989)
Year of discovery (5 October) of endemic Algerian Nuthatch by Jean-pierre Ledant BIRDS AS BIRDWATCHERS
Length in cm of the Giant Nuthatch, an Asiatic species
Length in cm of the Pygmy Nuthatch, a North American species
Birds have good eyesight, but they also have excellent skills as observers of other birds. Many birds are good at seeing and identifying potential predators and, as birdwatchers. We can put this to good use to find birds of prey, ourselves. Some birds, notably Starlings, tits and hirundines, produce distinctive calls and may bunch to gather in odd scattered ways when a bird of prey, such as a Sparrowhawk, is approaching. Experienced birdwatchers may hear these calls and ‘announce’ a Sparrowhawk before it is even in view. Similarly, if you hear gulls or Rooks making unusual calls overhead, this may be a sign that they have found a larger bird of prey to ‘mob’ (be it a Buzzard, a harrier or even a Red Kite or an Osprey). Finally, particularly at wetland sites where there are many birds present, you may see waves of birds take the air in panic, which usually means the close presence of a hunting Peregrine or other falcon, or perhaps a Marsh Harrier or similarly sized bird of prey.