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Living with Birds Yellowhammer is a distinctive visitor Tweetapedia

Tweetapedia

Yellowhammer is a distinctive visitor

An especially handsome visitor to rural gardens is the yellowhammer, the most familiar of the four species of buntings to breed in Britain. This is a widely distributed bird found throughout the length and breadth of the country, though it favours heaths and farmland with luxuriant hedges.

Cock yellowhammers sing late into the summer when most other birds have stopped, so their oft-repeated little-bit-of-bread-and-no-cheese is a familiar sound in the heat of a July day. The less showy female is more unobtrusive but her beautifully marked eggs are responsible for the yellowhammer’s old country name of scribble lark since the eggs look as if they have been scribbled on.

Few people are lucky enough to receive garden visits from yellowhammers in spring and summer. It’s a different matter in winter when they can be attracted to mixed seed and even corn. Don’t forget that they like to feed on the ground in the open but preferably with a good thorn hedge not too far away.