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The Dunnock has some wonderful vernacular names. From my Fauna Britannica: Billy (Oxfordshire); blue Isaac (Gloucestershire); dickie (Lancashire); hedge Betty (Warwickshire); Philip (Ireland); blue Tom (Stirlingshire); hedge Mike (Sussex) – these are just a few of the 49 names listed, from all parts of Britain. It’s no wonder, as the Dunnock is one of the most common of British birds.

200208 dunnock (1)

It may be dun coloured (hence its most common name, though some people still call it by its former name of Hedge sparrow) but its small frame is packed with character.

200208 dunnock (2)

This particular bird was so intent on blasting out its song today that it almost ignored me, standing on the muddy path in front of it. Another Dunnock was singing its territory and attractiveness as a mate from a nearby bush so I think there was a little competition going on.