Watch The Birdie

Filled feeder Wm

I haven’t been totally without distraction whilst chained to my desk.

A few years back we bought one of those bird feeders that can be stuck to glass. It was originally intended for my mother’s room at her nursing home, so that she could watch the birds in close proximity without getting up from her chair. Unfortunately when we came to fit the feeder a safety catch prevented the window from opening far enough to get the box through. The plan had to be abandoned and the feeder found its way on to our kitchen window instead.

All went well for a couple of days. A robin found the box and I enjoyed watching his antics whilst I was cooking a meal.

But then it had to happen didn’t it..


Squirrel by feeder Wm


Yes, I can see you..


Window feeder Wm


With the inevitable result


Anyhow, Mike has now repaired it and we’ve put it somewhere I’m pretty sure Mr Nutkins can’t possibly reach..


Bird Feeder 006 Wm[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent= first floor study window


Great Tit 005 Wm[1]


These must be the most laid back shots I’ve ever taken.

Camera on tripod with the cable shutter release placed next to my keyboard.


Great Tit 006 Wm[1]


Whenever there was rustling from the box I just moved my hand ever so slightly and pressed the release..


Great Tit 007 Wm[1]




A quick reminder to register for the Great British Birdwatch. It’s this weekend!


Watch The Birdie

pin it?

2017-10-24T19:32:42+00:00January 27th, 2016|Tags: |


  1. derrickjknight January 27, 2016 at 3:40 pm - Reply

    What a good idea

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 10:34 pm - Reply

      So far so good..

  2. Backlane Notebook January 27, 2016 at 3:40 pm - Reply

    How lovely and what beautiful close-ups. I now want one of those feeders although Nutkin or Nutter as we call him was seen close to the house helping himself to dropped bird seed and peanuts this morning.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 10:35 pm - Reply

      Nutters.. they’re certainly that. They’ll stop at nothing.

  3. FlowerAlley January 27, 2016 at 3:43 pm - Reply

    Poor Mr. Nutkins. I love this post.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 10:37 pm - Reply

      Don’t be too sorry for him. He still has all the bits that fall off the bird table. And all the food he pinches from off the top of it.

  4. Joanne January 27, 2016 at 3:49 pm - Reply

    Love it, they get everywhere don’t they x

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 10:39 pm - Reply

      I was going to say I would challenge him to reach the feeder where it is now, but I’ve just read Pauline’s comment below!

  5. Christina January 27, 2016 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    What a wonderful distraction; but doesn’t the window get very dirty from all the bird (ahem) activity?

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 10:42 pm - Reply

      That is the drawback. There are little white splodges all over the window sill. I may not be able to leave it there forever but it is giving me huge pleasure at the moment. I’ll tail it off in Spring when they’ve plenty of food elsewhere.

  6. Pauline January 27, 2016 at 4:08 pm - Reply

    I hate to tell you, but the undergardener used to work in Exeter on the 3rd floor of a building, no trees nearby, but one day he had a squirrel on his windowsill! We have seen them climbing the walls here just outside the dining room, when I had loads of tulips in pots I put them on the balcony hoping they would be safe, no chance, they were all eaten!

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 10:44 pm - Reply

      Oh dear… I thought I had cracked it!

  7. Vera January 27, 2016 at 4:21 pm - Reply

    We had squirrels in abundance when we lived in the UK. It was fun at first watching their attempts, and successes, to get food from our bird feeders, but then it got tiresome once I realised how much food they stole. Hope you are successful with your bird feeder this time. It must be nice to have those lovely birds so close to you.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:00 pm - Reply

      It is. The Great Tit in the pictures is getting to be a regular visitor and gaining confidence all the time. There might be a nest in the box before winter is out!

  8. Charlie@Seattle Trekker January 27, 2016 at 4:23 pm - Reply

    You really got some great photos. That is such a fabulous idea; I have hummingbird feeders by my backdoor that are pretty active, but I don’t have anything else that is easy to watch from the house.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:02 pm - Reply

      I am SO envious of your hummingbirds. I would really love to have those.

  9. Sue Garrett January 27, 2016 at 4:25 pm - Reply

    I bet you don’t get very much done well the birds are visiting.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:03 pm - Reply

      They are adorable to watch. It is hard!

  10. Rosie January 27, 2016 at 4:31 pm - Reply

    Wonderful! What a great idea to take photos of the birds at your window. We have a window feeder and a flock of starlings knocked it off the other day, just one small crack so it has gone back for now. I have registered for the bird watch this weekend as I always enjoyg doing it:)

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:06 pm - Reply

      Doing the birdwatch is great fun. I’m wondering if it will be different for us this year with fewer trees around the house. I haven’t noticed any reduction in the number of birds visiting. In fact if anything we seem to see more because there are fewer branches in the way!

  11. justjilluk January 27, 2016 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    We do the Garden Bird Watch every year. Its usually a cue for them all to disappear ! I like the idea of the window bird feeder. – we dont have squirrels – The DP finds fancy moss covered sticks so his photos are more arty/natural ! But he has to sit and wait with tripod fixed. Yours is far more laifd back. I like it!

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:10 pm - Reply

      Now there is the mark of a proper photographer. If I had the patience that is exactly what I would do. Mine is very definitely the lazy way!

  12. Angie January 27, 2016 at 4:45 pm - Reply

    You’ve got to admire their persistence! The birds are distraction enough without having a feeder at the window for me. Great pictures Jessica.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:13 pm - Reply

      I do tend to get quite a few visitors to my window in any event. It’s just above the bird table and when it’s busy they sometimes form an orderly queue on my window sill. Or hang from the roof!

  13. M. L. Kappa January 27, 2016 at 4:57 pm - Reply

    What a good idea! I’d never seen one of these before

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:17 pm - Reply

      It’s such a simple thing, but clever. And cheap as chips!

  14. Jennifer January 27, 2016 at 5:37 pm - Reply

    You got such beautiful shots of that bird. I’ve never seen a birdfeeder like that, I would love to have one for my kitchen. I get some really interesting little birds in the honeysuckle that runs along the side window.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:20 pm - Reply

      I got mine from that big online store beginning with ‘A’. Worth a look. The birds are cautious at first but they do get used to it.

  15. Linda aka Crafty Gardener January 27, 2016 at 5:52 pm - Reply

    I hope Mr Nutkins doesn’t find a way to get to the feeder, but we all know how resourceful they can be when they smell good snacks. We have a squirrel that travels along the hero wires, over to the house, across the roof and then tries to get to the hanging coil feeder. When I’m in the office I can hear him scurrying across the roof, so I head to the window to warn him away. I’m thinking of taking some photos of him travelling the wires.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:22 pm - Reply

      Oh yes, please try for the photos! Ours have got used to my yelling at them, they just ignore me now. They don’t ignore the water pistol though 🙂

  16. Denise January 27, 2016 at 6:10 pm - Reply

    Oh lovely! This fits in so well with my post – in a way!

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:24 pm - Reply

      It should be out of the way of cats too.. I hope.

  17. Archie The Wonder Dog January 27, 2016 at 6:25 pm - Reply

    Fabulous photos!

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:24 pm - Reply

      Thanks Archie!

  18. Linda January 27, 2016 at 6:47 pm - Reply

    Hi Jessica….
    Darn them Squirrels!
    I love this idea….
    Every time I pick up my camera, I seem to scare the birds away…
    Perhaps I need a tripod too!
    Linda :o)

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:28 pm - Reply

      It does make it very easy. Usually I train the camera on the bird table, then sit back with a coffee and wait.

  19. ann hyde - studiohyde January 27, 2016 at 8:13 pm - Reply

    Oh I love this, even if it had been intended for elsewhere originally. Great idea with the tripod and shutter release button, brilliant idea.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:33 pm - Reply

      Even through the double glazed window the birds heard the shutter click, but they got used to it. Even if they did look round occasionally, as in the last image!

  20. Sarah January 27, 2016 at 8:15 pm - Reply

    That squirrel get’s every where! Those are wonderful images from your study. I’m surprised you have any time to blog with so many welcome visitors! Sarah x

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:39 pm - Reply

      As long as there are no unwelcome ones all will be well 🙂

  21. Alain January 27, 2016 at 8:26 pm - Reply

    Good luck in your fight with Mr Nutkins (you will need it!)

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:40 pm - Reply

      I think you’re right.

  22. Denise January 27, 2016 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    I can hear a squirrel shifting a ladder as we speak. Whilst putting on a parachute. And some hang gliding gear.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:42 pm - Reply

      I have the water pistol on standby. We are ready. 🙂

  23. Brian Skeys January 27, 2016 at 9:21 pm - Reply

    I have often thought of buying one of those feeders, great pictures.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:44 pm - Reply

      I don’t know how long it will last but it is great fun. If the squirrel detaches it from here there is no hope.. concrete path below.

  24. Reclaiming Paradise January 27, 2016 at 9:25 pm - Reply

    We had one of those many years ago but it was too tempting for the cat to sit and watch which we felt was unfair on the birds – so abandoned it

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:46 pm - Reply

      That would give a bird a bit of a shock! They are always on maximum alert while they’re feeding. If there’s any movement from the room they’re off.

  25. germac4 January 28, 2016 at 2:53 am - Reply

    Great photos, and good construction to get the photo happening.The bird feeder is a great idea for photographers, and also people who are house bound….but I hadn’t initially thought of the cat problem…oh dear!

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:50 pm - Reply

      It should be safe enough where it is now. The birds are becoming regular visitors and it’s lovely to watch them feeding.

  26. Kris P January 28, 2016 at 4:38 am - Reply

    I knew what was coming even before I saw the furry tailed rat! I’m glad you were able to use it in a squirrel-free zone.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:53 pm - Reply

      I am a little worried about Pauline’s description above of wall climbing behaviour, but we shall see. I stand ready to repel boarders.

  27. Sam January 28, 2016 at 8:09 am - Reply

    Fingers crossed it remains a birds-only feeder. Those squirrels are amazingly ingenious when it comes to getting at nuts. Fabulous photos, Jessica. And all from the comfort of your office – brilliant.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:55 pm - Reply

      They are ingenious but, wall climbing aside, they will need accomplices to reach this one.

  28. Anne Wheaton January 28, 2016 at 9:24 am - Reply

    Fab photos though I fully expect a future photo of a squirrel hanging down from the roof to reach the feeder.

    • Jessica January 28, 2016 at 11:57 pm - Reply

      Or maybe a chain of squirrels, each holding on to the legs of the one below?

  29. pagedogs January 28, 2016 at 12:38 pm - Reply

    It’s a shame that the feeder didn’t fit your mother’s nursing home window. It would be nice if all nursing homes had bird feeders, flowering indoor plants, and some resident pets. Squirrels, too.

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:11 am - Reply

      Some of them are quite strict and don’t allow bird feeders at all, because of the risk of attracting rats. Such a shame because the birds give so much pleasure. Health and safety gone mad.

  30. SeagullSuzie January 28, 2016 at 3:58 pm - Reply

    Naughty Nutkins! How fab to have the feeder by your desk and the images are great. I will take part in the GGBW this weekend and I’m just hoping the Blackcap shows up as he’s been here everyday for weeks. Thanks for the reminder though.

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:17 am - Reply

      Yes indeed. It’s nice to have something a bit different on the list. I can usually rely on the pheasant to perform that role. I did see a goldcrest last year but not within the witching hour and only once!

  31. 1secondhandrose January 28, 2016 at 7:25 pm - Reply

    Nutkins will never forgive you for the ‘spinner’. He WILL find a way up to that feeder….
    Rose H

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:20 am - Reply

      The water pistol is fully charged and waiting.. 😉

  32. woolythymes January 28, 2016 at 9:59 pm - Reply

    i’ve wanted one of those bird feeders for FOREVER!!! but feared the exact thing that happened to yours. How perfect to have a space Mr (and Mrs and all the kids) Nutkin can’t reach it. Great shots!!! Not sure how much work I’d be getting done…..

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:22 am - Reply

      Not a lot is the answer when the birds come to call..

  33. jenhumm116 January 28, 2016 at 10:30 pm - Reply

    How lovely to be able to see the birds so close – and ingenious idea about the tripod and cable shutter release so you could share with us!

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:25 am - Reply

      The birds are so easily spooked, I don’t think I’d have managed it any other way.

  34. Amy at love made my home January 28, 2016 at 10:55 pm - Reply

    Fabulous photos! How wonderful to be able to watch the birds while you work. xx

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:26 am - Reply

      It is! They are only a couple of feet away too. I have to sit very still.

  35. cherylwest2015 January 28, 2016 at 11:07 pm - Reply

    It is wonderful to find a spot that may be squirrel free to enjoy your birds. So far we have been sans squirrel this winter but it has been so much milder and we are knee deep in acorns.

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:29 am - Reply

      They haven’t bothered us quite so much either, but they are still around. The bird table is just too tempting for easy pickings. Or maybe they just enjoy the squirrel spinner too much!

  36. woodlandgnome January 28, 2016 at 11:27 pm - Reply

    Fabulous! Jessica, I love your camera set up! What a great idea to get candids without startling the birds. You have a lovely blog, and I especially love your slide show header. Thank you for visiting FG. It seems we fight the same battles though an ocean a part. Cheers! Elizabeth

    • Jessica January 29, 2016 at 12:35 am - Reply

      Thanks and welcome.
      We certainly do fight the same battles. But it’s a small price to pay for the privilege of having woodland and all the pleasure that brings. Mind you, the American grey squirrel has a lot to answer for!

  37. wherefivevalleysmeet January 29, 2016 at 12:44 am - Reply

    Great I must look into getting one of those. Apart from the photos they must be a very entertaining distraction from other more mundane jobs that need to be done.

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 5:35 pm - Reply

      I don’t think I’ve ever seen the birds at such close quarters before.

  38. Beth @ PlantPostings January 29, 2016 at 2:35 am - Reply

    LOL. I’m imagining you sitting at your desk, glancing over, and clicking on the shutter release. I like this method. Silly squirrel!

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 5:38 pm - Reply

      It’s the perfect lazy way to do it. I did take quite a few pictures though because I wasn’t looking at quite the same angle as the camera was. Mike calls it the scattergun approach… rapid fire shutter on the basis that one shot will be good. That’s me.

  39. Amy January 29, 2016 at 3:09 am - Reply

    You’re perfecting the technique! Wonderful shots! Of course, Nutkin is off coming up with a few more riddles…

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 5:40 pm - Reply

      He hasn’t worked it out yet.. have I beaten him?

  40. New Moons For Old January 29, 2016 at 10:15 am - Reply

    Fantastic! I’ve often wondered about these feeders, but never been convinced. However, it seems they work really well. By the way, we’ve talked our pigeon and magpie problem by hanging one of Green & Blue’s Birdcalls – not cheap but the robin and the blue tits have taken to it really well. And our pheasant etc can pick up the spillage!

  41. New Moons For Old January 29, 2016 at 10:17 am - Reply

    … we’ve SOLVED our pigeon and magpie problem by hanging one of Green & Blue’s BIRDBALLS. Apologies – I’m having typo problems this morning.

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 5:57 pm - Reply

      I’ve just looked them up, those birdballs are really smart and with the shiny surface no doubt easy to clean. I’m tempted but just don’t trust the squirrels. Every feeder we’ve had so far has been destroyed in one way or another, even the squirrel proof ones. Their usual approach is to nibble the tether and then break a feeder apart on the ground. They are a nightmare!

  42. Rick Nelson January 29, 2016 at 11:05 am - Reply

    Tree rats! Don’t you just hate them, a very junior one actually got inside the wires of my “squirrel proof” feeders last year and wrapping itself round the tube almost chewed the perches off before it became too big to get through the gaps. I tried a window feeder a couple of years ago and had absolutely no success at enticing the birds to feed, don’t know to this day what the reason was but my sister had no success either.

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 6:04 pm - Reply

      I think this one works because the birds occasionally come to the window anyway. It’s just above the birdtable so they sometimes wait on the window ledge. I’m just providing the hors d’oeuvres once they’re already of a mind to eat.

  43. Julieanne January 29, 2016 at 11:25 am - Reply

    Those tricksy squirrels! Looks like your new solution works. And such a good set up for getting great photos. I wonder if the Great Tit knows it’s starring in a new film 🙂

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 6:06 pm - Reply

      Don’t shout it too loud, he’ll want paying. Or at least an Oscar.

  44. homeslip January 29, 2016 at 5:38 pm - Reply

    How wonderful to see the birds so close. I love doing the birdwatch and usually do it from the allotment as well as my garden and this year I’ll be doing it from the cottage garden too – in between scrubbing quarry tiles. I like your window seat cushion. Did you make it and how are you getting on with your upholstery? I’m afraid my grandmother’s dining chairs have gone off to the upholsterer. I’m blaming lack of correct tools and the difficulty of sourcing the raw materials for my inability to do it myself.

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 6:13 pm - Reply

      We were rained off earlier, will start the birdwatch again tomorrow. Although I don’t think the weather is too promising then either.
      Yes I made the cushion, but don’t let’s dwell on the upholstery! It was on my list of resolutions this year and I have looked at it. I’m contemplating taking it back a stage and doing the stuffing again. And maybe the springs.. It’s too high in the seat. But it was experimental right? That means you have to do it more than once.

  45. elaine January 29, 2016 at 6:47 pm - Reply

    It surprises me that they dare come so close to the house – I bet you have to sit like a statue so as not to scare them off – hope the study window fooled the squirrel

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 6:14 pm - Reply

      I have to sit very still indeed. I can just about manage turning my head to watch them. Hopefully they’ll get more confident!

  46. Piddlewick January 29, 2016 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    Oh I love those feeders that attach to the window! I used to have one. It was attached to our bedroom window. The only thing, come summer, was we were woken up at 4am by tapping at the window. Lots of tapping, and flinging of stuff against the window, and… well you get the picture. Needless to say we had to move the feeder from bedroom to front room and the birds never seemed to find it back again to the same affect. Ah well.

    And now, where we live (ah the countryside!), we are inundated with birds of all types all times of day, and night (as we have a couple of cheeky, noisy owls. So although we no longer have the tap tap tap at the window at 4am, we now get to listen to bird song instead.

    Oh, and the odd tap tap of a raven when he sees his reflection in the velux.

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 6:22 pm - Reply

      You see that ridge on the back edge of the feeder? The perspex at the back doesn’t quite go right down to the bottom of the box and seed can escape. It drives the birds crazy. They can see it, but they can’t reach it. Beaks on perspex, especially in an enclosed space, can make an awful lot of noise!

  47. Janet/Plantaliscious January 29, 2016 at 7:48 pm - Reply

    That sounds like the perfect way to take excellent bird photos! And a very pleasant distraction from work…

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 6:24 pm - Reply

      I just wish the design was a little more streamlined. The suckers get in the way!

  48. Anna January 30, 2016 at 6:49 pm - Reply

    Oh I hope that the mended by Mike version thwarts the squirrel(s) Jessica. Great photos.

    • Jessica January 30, 2016 at 7:20 pm - Reply

      Thanks Anna 🙂

  49. Chloris January 31, 2016 at 1:27 pm - Reply

    I love the idea of a stick on bird feeder for the window. . I have an albino Great Tit in the garden. I would love to entice here nearer so that I could get a good shot of him.

    • Jessica February 1, 2016 at 6:07 pm - Reply

      I thought it would be only robins plucky enough to feed so close to the house, so I was surprised by the Great Tit. But he (or she) is very welcome. Hope you get a shot of your albino, would be interesting to see it.

  50. Donna@Gardens Eye View January 31, 2016 at 9:39 pm - Reply

    Those devils…we are always trying to outwit them.

    • Jessica February 1, 2016 at 6:56 pm - Reply

      So far so good…

  51. Marianne February 12, 2016 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    My daughter had squirrels foraging in her window boxes when she she lived on a third floor flat in central London a few years ago, couldn’t figure out how they got up there but they did.

    • Jessica February 13, 2016 at 8:15 pm - Reply

      Hi Marianne and welcome!
      Oh dear.. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. The squirrel is nothing if not resourceful. They have probably fitted themselves out with Spider-Man feet.

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