Saturday, 24 March 2012

Bachelor

Our walk around Attenborough Nature Reserve yesterday was busier than we are used to, with cyclists, joggers, noisy children, etc.  The weather could have been a bit better too as the fog proved to be rather stubborn.  But there were a couple of colourful highlights.  As we sat having our coffee before returning to the car, a male Chaffinch sat in a bush just outside the visitor's centre, just crying out to be photographed.
If you are wondering about the title of today's blog entry, the word bachelor refers to the Chaffinch, the scientific name for which is Fringilla coelebs.  Coelebs is Latin for Bachelor, a name given to it by the great taxonomist Linnaeus who, seeing large flocks of only male birds, decided that they must be bachelors by nature.
Once thought to be Britain's most numerous bird according to the RSPB, it has been knocked off the top 'perch' into second place by the Wren.  There are still thought to be about 6,000,000 breeding pairs of Chaffinches.  And what little beauties they are - well, the males anyway!
Post a Comment