“Tsweet” treat

linnet male 2Male linnet, River Idle

What a fantastic year for sightings of our beautiful local finches.  One of our favourites is the linnet.  We’ve seen and taken pictures of many around Retford, both male and female.  The pictures on this page were seen near the River Idle, where we’ve seen lots of them.   The males look beautiful in their breeding plumage, when they have a reddish pink on their breast and crown.  The female (below) is a dullish brown, but has a lovely streaky breast and wings.  We’ve seen these virtually everywhere we go birding.

linnet femaleFemale linnet, River Idle

In Victorian and Edwardian times these small finches were often kept in cages for their musical song, which is a varied twittering.  However, they are now protected and are on the increase again, after facing dangers such as pesticides depleting the wild flower seeds they depend on.

Linnets love to build nests in gorse bushes or brambles a few feet off the ground, and lay eggs which are white with reddish spots.  They lay 4-5 eggs twice a year, and are partial migrants.

They really are lovely birds to see and hear.

linnet maleMale linnet, River Idle

 

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