Great tits

Sketch of a great tit by Hannah Foley (hannah@owlingabout.co.uk)The title of this post is more apt than I’d care to admit. Big Dreamer spent Monday trying to sort out our poorly trailer tyre as we’re off camping again this weekend. As he stared disconsolately at it our ever-practical next door neighbour sauntered over. “I was wondering why you didn’t take the trailer when there’s a spare inside it,” she said nonchalantly, a twinkle in her eye. There was a collective slapping of palms to foreheads. Great tits indeed! So, the spare is in place and one of the stockmen, who has a way with tyres (probably best not to ask) has worked his magic on the dud one.

From one great tit to another, the bird is my bird for this week. Simon Barnes, in Birdwatching With Your Eyes Closed, says that the song of the great tit is the first to listen out for in early spring. He describes the song as a two-stroke note that sounds a bit like teacher, teacher, teacher. As soon as I heard the clip of it I instantly recognised it as a tune I’ve heard often around the garden and now I know who it belongs to! It reminds me of a squeaky seesaw. Unfortunately for novices in birdsong like me, the great tit has an extensive repertoire so I’ll be taking Bill Oddie’s advice, “…if you hear a call and don’t recognise it – it’s a great tit.” Here’s the clip for the song of the great tit.

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