One of the most charming little birds of the British Isles is the Wagtail. There are two varieties of this tiny chap and they can be seen dashing about all over the place in search of food for themselves or their young. They are named after their tendency to wag their long tail up and down constantly. There are two types; the resident Pied or white tail and the visiting but scarcer Yellow tailed. Let have a look at the characterises of the birds and where to find them.
The Yellows migrate during the summer where they love the lowland areas of the Welsh Marches. They eat insects so the cattle and sheep country pastures there provide a great food source. That means a trip around Wales. Welsh Coast Campervans provide a great viewing platform doubling as a bird hide. You’ll need to know where to park up to be able to get out and see the birds so just have a look at this link to give you a list for Wales https://www.outandaboutlive.co.uk/motorhomes/articles/general/parking-your-motorhome-in-wales. The Yellows come from West Africa the males coming before the females to ensure all is well and can be heard in the hedgerows singing. They are ground nesters so the choose a hollow or clump of vegetation to set up home. To keep it warm fur and wood are used. The female lays up to 5-6 eggs. Whilst she incubates them the Male provides her with food. They love to chase food down with a swift but of flying or a brisk walk. The cow pat is the Yellow’s friend as they enjoy leaping up to take out a taste dung fly.
This is the most come and is a resident of Wales all year round so. They are black and white almost like a mini Magpie. One quick note, they enjoy car parks so you’re sure to see some in the places listed above. They provide a source of food from our left overs as they can be less choosy than their yellow tailed cousins. They have to be less choosy as though they love insects first and foremost there are less of them about in winter for them to hunt. They can be seen bobbing about trying to take the tiniest of bugs like gnats even of sunny winters day. A few cake, biscuit or bread crumbs won’t do them any harm though.
Pied and yellow seem to have a cheeky character about them but don’t let that fool you. Certainly, Pied are a force to be reckoned with if there winter food supply is threated. They will launch themselves in a kamikaze style attack on any bird regardless of its size. Even the dreaded Sparrowhawk thinks twice before facing a maddened Wagtail. You go little bird!
Read more Big Tent for The Khan