Friday, September 28, 2012

Juvenile Blackbird

I came across this Juvenile Blackbird yesterday alongside the ditch by the Mill Copse Scrape. It looks like it's just had a bath. The spot that it has chosen to dry out is a real sun-trap, and I think that the bird is really enjoying the warmth. I saw it in exactly the same spot earlier this week!

If you look closely, you'll notice that the central toe of the right foot is swollen compared to that on the other side. Chaffinches are particularly susceptible to a disease called viral papilloma which causes swelling and deformed feet but I'm not sure whether that is what is causing this. Maybe it's the result of an injury.

In the video sequence below you can see the Blackbird beginning to preen as it dries. Feather-care is obviously very important in birds, and you can see the way it aligns some of the wing feather barbs, beginning at the base and working towards the tip.

1 comment:

  1. That is a lovely video, will it be 'fully feathered' before winter? I hope that the toe won't cause problems for it.