28th January 2015

Yellowhammers today:- a favourite bird, the Yellowhammer can be found throughout the UK, except for Highlands and parts of the Pennines, which makes it lucky to have so

A male Yellowhammer over-wintering on 'Tree Sparrow Farm' at Old Moor

A male Yellowhammer over-wintering on ‘Tree Sparrow Farm’ at Old Moor

Yellowhammers will concentrate on seeds in winter when insects are harder to find

Yellowhammers will concentrate on seeds in winter when insects are harder to find

Even in their duller winter colouring Yellowhammers are beautiful striated

Even in their duller winter colouring Yellowhammers are beautiful striated

In winter they feed in mixed flocks, appropriately here they are with Tree Sparrows at Tree Sparrow Farm!

In winter they feed in mixed flocks, appropriately here they are with Tree Sparrows at Tree Sparrow Farm!

many overwintering at Old Moor RSPB reserve near Barnsley. Amongst the showers of hail, and battered by gusty wind, we saw many birds here today but the Yellowhammers were the biggest treat. In winter they feed on seeds, in mixed flocks with other small birds, and are less brightly coloured than in the breeding season, but the males are still beautiful, as I hope these photos show. (They are fairly timid so were quite a long way away, hence the slight blurring!). Now on the endangered Red List due to changing farming practices, they rarely come to bird-tables, even in rural areas. Yellowhammers are one of the Buntings, and the name is thought to derive from the German for Bunting- ‘ammer’, so I read anyway! The Yellow bit speaks for itself, even in winter. Conditions: Gusty wind, hail showers and sunny intervals with snow due overnight. Temperature: Max 7- Min 0C. 

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