They came for the second time last weekend. The Long Tailed Tits, like a band of cheeky child pickpockets, pushing away the Blues and Coals and even making our valiant Robin hop into the hedge a while.
Such beautiful little birds, delicate in their pinkie greys and blacks, long twitching tails and heads bobbing. They flocked the new feeder station eight, nine, ten of them, pecking the balls of seeded fat, flying to and from the peanuts, a quick snacking feast along the way to wherever they were flying.
Only the second time they’ve raided, at least when I’ve been around to see, both times early morning. Each a ball of feathers on a stick, little thieving vagabonds, reminding me of the ghosts of birds with the delicacy of their colouring. Like tiny Japanese silk paintings somehow, deftly inked with a few seemingly simple strokes, all the colours of a winter's afternoon sky.
Winter birds, wintry in their look and nature. Here two minutes, maybe three, and gone leaving me smiling and reaching for my coffee cup, longing for the time they'll sneak back beneath the radar and fly in again.