Monday, 6 July 2015

Day 246 - Great Grey Partridges

Grey Partridge (Perdix perdix)
Hey everyone today is Day 246 and I went on a short drive yesterday, after going to Silton Forest, and I spotted out of the window, a Partridge. For once my camera was next to me on the seat and I rolled down the window and managed, after a bit of hassle finding it, as it was really good at using its camouflaged feathers, got some pictures. This was special as it wasn't just a Red-Legged Partridge, which I have already covered here, it was a Grey Partridge. It's getting quite hard to find a bird locally that I haven't already covered so I was quite happy.

So, here are the facts:

  • The Partridge actually lays the most eggs in a clutch in the world. In Britain it lays, on average, 14-15 eggs but in Finland the average clutch is 19!
You can see here how easy it can hide in the grass, or can you/
  • I say Partridge as this bird was always called the Partridge until the Red-Legged Partridge was introduced. After this it started to get called the Grey Partridge.
  • Still on the subject of eggs, they are usually 36mm x 27mm and normally weigh 3.6% of the adult at 14.1 grams.
  • In Britain the average Grey Partridge will raise 5.8 birds to breeding age. I hope that it's not though. Can I have the extra 0.2 please? :`(
  • They can be found in a lot of Countries, most of Europe, Russia, and some of Asia, such as China and Azerbaijan (I love that name!).
  • They like to live in farmland or at the edges of woods and nest at the base of hedges making a scrape in the ground and lining it with grass and leaves. Adults eat grain, grass and clover so they like cereal fields. 
  • If a bird has 43,000 breeding territories in the UK and in Europe around 1.6 million breeding pairs, what Status would you say the bird was?
  • Well in this case, RED, this is because there has been a rather large population decline over the last 25 years, as much as 85%. This is probably due to loss of habitat due to modern farming methods which have larger fields and have destroyed a lot of hedgerows.  
    It had an eye open in case any Raptors were about!
  • Another reason is food for their chicks. They need insects for protein to get big quickly. Farming has affected this too as the weeds which would feed the insects which feed the Partridge are now controlled by special weed killers.
  • And on the subject of food they make a handy sized meal for predators such as Foxes and Goshawks. 
  • Hunting, well shooting, is another factor. Red Legged Partridge are reared for shooting and the shooters can't always tell the difference!
  • So it seems altogether they aren't having a good time in Britain :-(
  • They are not found in Cornwall, North and South Ireland (but they rare found in the middle) as well as Wales, North and West Scotland.
  • They are 30cm long with a 46cm wingspan. Both Males and Females weigh 390g. Their ring size is E*.
Here are some links to some more information:

Hope you enjoyed,


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