Return of the Martins

great spotted woodpeckerIt was good to see the great spotted woodpecker, a female (no red nape patch) on the feeders this morning, reaching the last sunflower hearts that even the nuthatch and the squirrel couldn’t quite get to. It’s such a muscular looking bird.

blackthorn blossomIt moved to the trunk of our crab apple and carefully investigated a spot on the bark, then made its way up the main stem before diverting to a side branch in the crown of the tree and making off with its trademark bouncing flight past the right hand end of the blackthorn blossom into the wood.

And, at 8.40 a.m., I saw a house martin swooping around the gable end of a house across the road. I’ve had distant views of martins or swallows over the meadow in the evening but this is the first time that I’ve seen one taking an interest in┬áthis regular nest site. It’s about a month since we saw our first swallow.

house martinI noticed two sparrows flew down under the eves as the martin circled. I wonder if they had their eyes on taking over an old martin’s nest?