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Life of the Jackdaws

Posted by merlintherook on February 19, 2011 at 8:43 AM Comments comments (1)

(nb - this post is from The Hag, I'm just setting up the blog categories for now, josh)

What lead to studying Jackdaws...


I have been really lucky. Esma first really got me into studying other Corvids and their way of life in the wilds. ( see blog appreciation to Esma)


So we have found we have a Jackery of about 5,000 Jackdaws and about 200 Rooks with a few Crows joining in.


The study has taken a huge turn which I will add later. As each day brings a privilege of something new every day. And I have started to record the antic's which go on each/most days.


Here is some of the past which has lead to the ever growing log I have started to develop.




I remember the first snows before Christmas. The electric in the village had gone out. And my joy to rush down the common while there was no light pollution was beyond my wildest dreams.


I walked past the what I now call the Jackery. I’m sorry to say I rather disturbed the jackdaws who let out loads of jack jack noises at my passing. It was an amazing night. snow covered the ground and there was even otter tracks in the snow showing a long tail being dragged along the ground.


I have had a thing about walking round our Common at night and I even brought my Children up to walk round the common at night. It gives you so much more insight into the wildlife activities. My answer to my Children if they said they where scared was " Its ok I’m the scariest thing round the common" which I think now in their 20's they would agree. But I digress from the Jackdaws.


I wasn’t keeping dates and now I wish I had.


One dusk evening in Januarys we walked out of The Little Owl woods


To see an amazing display of thousands of Jackdaws coming in to roost, That winter I think I saw it about 5 times in all.


Then it was time for nesting. I know this as I have had a pair of Jackdaws now having nested on my chimney for the last five years ( I will expand on these later in another Blog on here ) So I was no longer able to have a fire in my living room. from the middle of March beginning of April.


Then in the summer after all the births the Jackdaws and Rooks moved to Mirgiva woods for the summer of 2010.


Some evening's I would see Jackdaws coming in from all directions into Mirgiva woods. While on other's they would gather on fields before taking to the trees.


I’ve seen large groups of Rooks in the Saw Woods and out on the Crow Pond Field


Who have been there with the Pigs. Then flying over to the Horse field During the day.


So now I have started to record what happens most days.


And will be under the title Blog “Life of the Jackdaws“...


Life of the Jackdaws


I could do this in chart form. But for me its not just about analytical recording of facts. This is something that touches my heart deeply and brings so much Joy to my life.

Also part of my procedure now is to bow to the Jackdaw. Its my way of saying thank you and showing my respect to them.


I was gathering wood from the yard next door. Late afternoon.

When a Big swath of mainly Jackdaws started to fly over. Some split off into smaller groups and did some wonderful circular displays, one group was only about 30 yards away from me. Then a big group went off to the North only to return again in a few minutes. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon, the sky was a magnificent blue. While I just stood in awe. Feeling so privileged to see such brilliant antics and great flying displays. This lasted about half an hour Then they went to their Roost. In the Jackery woods.




Had a visit to the Chimney today. From my couple.

I went out a bit earlier than usual for my Dog walk. And loads of Jackdaws and Rooks

had gathered in the Jackery wood up in the Poplar tree. ( it’s the highest tree in the wood )

Then a big flock came to join them and every one flew up had a grand fly round to then settle in the tree’s

They don’t use the Poplar tree during the night roost, Keeping to the lower trees.

( There is another story about the Poplar and will be included in the blog Other wildlife story’s)


Unfortunately missed roost time today and yesterday. But was rewarded with an awful lot of chatter going on late into the night. Why? I haven’t a clue, It wasn’t even full moon. But was the night after Imbolc 2 Feb( the wake up call ) Wonder if that is what got into them?

The first call toward spring. It was also quite warm at this time.


A windy cloudy and still warm day.

The Jackdaws were busy very early 3.45. A huge flock flew over the house and doing some grand displays right over the top of my head. Some large groups of a thousand while some others of about 30. Its very usual to see them in flock like this while they are not going to roost. Even my friend down in the village noted them flying over and she is about a mile and a half to the North. (As the crow fly's about a mile)

The sad thing was my friends Jo and Josh came over to see the Jakdaws go to Roost and even though we had about 200-300 fly over our heads. They didn’t Roost at the Jackery. I wondered if it was because a shoot had been going on over the river in the direction of Mirgiva wood. Mirgiva Wood is the summer roost (or was last year) although sometimes also a share of my Jackdaws and more Rooks roost over there for winter night too.


Gone to the other end of the village at 1.30pm. To see a friend, Again noted a group of Jackdaws flying over. ( Are these guys following me Hahhahah)

No Roosting in the Jackery or Mirgiva again tonight. Where have they gone? I’m sad.

Afraid since I have been inspired by Corvids My driving is terrible as the eyes just carnt help noting Corvids are about and what they're up to. Doesn’t help conversation with other's if I’m outside either as the Corvids seem to take preference over anything that is being said.


YERRRRRR Jackdaws back. And it’s a wet night. So was it the shooting ? Or as Jo reported to me she had seen some Corvids getting nest material today? Who knows with Corvids. They have been giving me the run-around for the last 2 years trying to work out a pattern. Thus now this almost a daily Blog.



Jackdaw with a few Rooks in the Jackery. But also managed to be on the bank tonight and sounded like mainly Rooks with Jackdaws in Mirgiva woods tonight. Oh how I wish I could be in about 5 places all at the same time to really get a good view of all what is happening.

I need to be in about 2 places over at the Mirgiva wood. While One of me at the corner of Bat field, Another near the Oak at the North edge of 5 Corner Field. While another of me at the Bank next to the Jackery so I can be as close to the sound as I can possibly get. Because being so close to the sound as they come into the Jackery is something so special too, It sends chills through you the sheer volume of the sound..



Didn’t get home till 6pm myself, Jackdaws already in Roost. Oh but what a magnificent sound to come home to. Makes every thing in the world seem right. While adding a big beam to my face.



Great day out. Jo and Josh have come back to see the Jackdaws and we were not disappointed.

I could hear the Jackdaws and Rooks arriving on the Jackdaw field. My impatience for Jo and Josh to arrive was almost beyond me. Its not many times I've managed to see them on the fields near mine.

We got up to the field to see a great swath across the field and the tree in the Saw wood was also full of jack jack.

We got a beautiful display of them coming in to roost. Thank You Guys.

(note - for larger photo's go to photo gallerys and look in the album "Jackdaws, jackdaws, jackdaws")

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