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When deciding on a title for this post, I couldn’t help but wonder where the phrase ‘Watch the birdie’ originated, and I quickly discovered that as early as 1879 Victorian portrait photographers were using trained live birds and then mechanical chirping birds to hold the attention of their subjects. (This blog has more details if you’re interested.) My intentions were a little different: I was carrying small pottles of bird seed to try to hold the birdies’ attention so I could take their photographs! However, plenty of folk had beaten me to it and the birds were already scoffing into all their food presents.


I hadn’t been to Forest Farm for a month or two so it was lovely to wander along the towpath of the old Glamorgan Canal and the meandering woodland paths, listening to bird song all around. A highlight was watching a kingfisher trying to spot the sprats in the canal – I only saw it dive once and that was unsuccessful but it was still an absolute delight to watch. It was a truly wonderful day watching the very-much-alive birdies.