Living in Normandy #7: Birdwatching

Countryside living is generally slower than everywhere else. However, it was been slower than normal for me. From my last post, you can tell things have been thrown distinctly out of routine, so here’s to hoping I can be back on track with posting in no time!


Writing the plan for this post I thought I would have a singular page of birds I have spotted locally and well it turned out to be about 3… It definitely goes to show that there is an abundance of wildlife around, even if it is not evidently obvious to begin with.

Let’s talk about summer birds as it is July, the weather is pretty picture perfect and it is a joy to be relaxing outside listening to birdsong. There are some really neat migratory birds here in both summer and winter, so hopefully, you can add them to your ‘to look out for’ list!

chaffinch sitting to the right of the frame on a dead branch of an oak tree in Normandy France.
Chaffinch
Canon6dii and Sigma 150-600mm

Birds I have spotted

So far this summer I have seen the following local to my home:

note that I live in an agricultural rural setting.

  • Robin
  • Blackbird
  • Goldfinch
  • Chaffinch
  • ChiffChaff
  • Wren
  • Greenfinch
  • Blue Tit
  • Great Tit
  • Marsh Tit
  • Dunnock
  • Sparrow
  • Swift
  • Swallow
  • House Martin (Barn Swallow)
  • Song Thrush
  • Stonechat
  • Whinchat
  • Eurasian Jay
  • Crow
  • Magpie
  • Wood pigeon
  • Collared Dove
  • Turtledove
  • Linnet
  • Siskin
  • Serin
  • Cirl Bunting
  • Yellowhammer
  • Corn Bunting
  • Skylark
  • Grey Wagtail
  • Pied Wagtail
  • Yellow Wagtail
  • Blackcap
  • Redstart
  • Fly Catcher
  • Nuthatch
  • Short-toed Treecreeper
  • Green woodpecker
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker
  • Eurasian Hoopoe
  • Cuckoo
  • Common Buzzard
  • Honey Buzzard
  • Marsh Harrier
  • Kestrel
  • Sparrowhawk
  • Starling
  • Grey Heron
  • Little Egret
  • Great Egret
  • White Stork
flycatcher on a wire
Flycatcher hanging out just a few metres from it’s nest

This year, thanks to everything going on in my life, I have had time to sit back and take in the world around me, from the comfort of my own garden. Thanks to this I have been able to observe the birds that are nesting in our bird boxes and in the hedges, trees, and barn.

Each year, a family of pied wagtails and blue tits return to nest in the outside of our stonewalls. We also had the fortune this year to have fly catches make a nest on the outer eaves of the barn, a redstart to nest in the top of our old cider pear tree, and a charm of goldfinches nest in a large clematis plant. I am also aware of jays nesting close by, mainly due to the racket they make.

Unfortunately this year we do not have any martins or swallows nesting in the barn, I think the cats saw that off pretty quickly!

juvenile grey wagtail sat on a cafe chair next to a river.
Juvenile grey wagtail joining me for coffee

Now that I have the incredible Sigma 150-600mm lens, I can hopefully get some more exciting shots of birds! However, just being able to enjoy the world around me, and identifying the birdsong and birds is equally as exciting.

If you enjoyed this post, check out my post here where I fangirl over pigeons!


Have you seen any exciting wildlife local to you recently? Let me know in the comments!

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Published by Briony-Molly

Reader, artist and Politics lover.

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