Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Day 176 - A Particularly Pleasing Partridge

Hey everyone, today's Day 176. I've probably told you before that I live quite close to the fabulous North York Moors. I often get the chance to go up to a little forest for a walk at weekends or on these nice Spring evenings. I don't go especially looking for nature or new things but it's great to get out, get some wild time and hear the birds singing. I do always have my camera with me though in case I happen to spot something. I'm still looking out for Adders which I haven't seen in this forest for a few years. When I do I have a funny story about them.
Red Legged Partridge (Alectoris rufa)

One thing I did see, and I wished I had for my Christmas series - 12 Days of Nature, was a few lovely Partridge. As it was Christmas Day my first day of nature post was quite short and since I now have a picture I thought I'd do a bit of a better Partridge post.

So here's a few more Partridge facts:

  • They are an introduced species from mainland Europe where they are found mainly in Spain and France.
  • As I said in my First Day of Nature post they are a game bird and are often hunted - its hard to find bird facts on the internet about them as you get a lot of results for recipes for Partridge. I prefer mine running around the moors!
  • The ones I saw were Red Legged Partridges. They have no status as an introduced bird but seem to have had a small decline over the last 25 years. Numbers in Europe though also seem to be declining.
Looking for tasty seeds..
  • They are 33cm long, have a wingspan of 48cm and weigh around half a kilo.
  • It seems they don't get ringed enough to know how old they naturally live to as I couldn't find a typical lifespan or oldest recorded bird fact. Maybe there's not much point when most are bred and released for hunting :-(
  • They seem to live mainly in Eastern and Souther Britain, the Isle of Man and a bit of Northern Ireland.
Keeping low - just in case!
  • The North York Moors is a great habitat for them as they like open scrubby countryside and farmland. I'm sure a few must stay away from the hunters and really enjoy this beautiful countryside.
  • They like to eat seeds, roots and leaves and the young like to eat insects too for protein.
  • Partridges are strictly ground birds and despite the line from the song they are never likely to be found in pear trees...
  • Despite being a ground bird. partridges still fly and the way they fly is different to your common garden bird. They fly with 'whirring' wings with the odd glide thrown in here or there.
So I hope you enjoyed the extended revisit of a Partridge. Here's a couple of links to more information:



Hope you enjoyed,

Z.

1 comment:

  1. Lovely photos of the Partridge here Zach! - Tasha

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