I spent a delightful bit of time watching this very vocal wren balancing on the tops of bracken at Bushy Park last week. The best way to find a wren is to listen for them chatting a territorial call in scrub, grasses and bracken. Watch for movement of the leaves and stems that can indicate where the wren is. They’ll come to perch at one of the higher points of the scrub to chat and sing. Watching them bobbing about and singing is such fun! They’re so tiny but have big characters and an even bigger voice.
Spot the wren! Not too hard to find with the Fujinon 100-400mm with a 1.4x tele-converter, but it is quite a challenge finding and following these birds in the grasses and reeds of Papercourt Meadows, alongside the Wey Navigation, with the naked eye. It’s a haven for wrens and I would estimate that there was an individual wren every few metres along the short stretch between Papercourt and Newark Lock. My tips for finding them are to find a good habitat spot, go early morning or evening, listen for the chatter or song, keep very still and look for movement (perhaps with binoculars or spotting scope) in the area where you can hear them singing. In this case I tracked the wren’s position by watching the grasses moving and kept the camera focussed on those areas, waiting for little Jenny to pop up into view. Be patient, let the wildlife come to you! Information on habitat can be found on the RSPB and BTO websites.
Evensong [ee-vuh n-sawng, -song]
noun: a service of evening prayers, psalms, and canticles, conducted according to a set form, especially that of the Anglican Church.
Seven o’clock, Sunday evening and the wren sings to the heavens. For this brief moment in time heaven surely did exist upon this patch of Earth. In the hedgerows, between the fields of wheat, blessedly bordered with grasses and wildflowers. I hear your prayer little wren. A plea to humanity to protect your habitat for generations to come. I hear you give thanks to the farmer who so tenderly looks after the wild borders around his precious crops. The abundance of life in this small paradise was a joy to behold! I revelled in the glory of the sights and sounds of nature in suburban Surrey.