A result of living in a "Sporting" area also means we have lots of pheasants around. They are reared intensively then released a few weeks before they are destined to be shot.

Some of them come to Redhall to be fed. One time Phil and I counted up to 40 - then stopped counting. They got some of the hen's food and one particular character, with a deformed beak got an extra share. As they were intensively reared it was the habit then to put plastic clips onto their beaks to prevent them injuring/killing each other when kept in close confinement and I think Captain Beaky had been a victim of this practice.

He became particularly friendly and used to knock on the door of the greenhouse whenever I was there to get extra goodies. [click for the video]. At least he reached maturity, survived a few shoots then disappeared.

I still miss his knocking on the door to the extent that I taught, (using Skinner's operant conditioning), a young female, (Lady Chapper), who chaps loudly on the back door whenever there's someone in sight (glass door!) and feeds from our hand - although I've just made a rod for my own back -she always chaps and has to be fed while I'm busy - I'll miss her when she's shot.

We used to see some partridge living in the area. A pair visited us when we were building Redhall - came to the caravan which we used as a site office - pecked the hub-caps then left - not impressed. They had a great clutch of chicks, about 12 + who would be carefully shepherded away by their parents and later fly away in a great cloud when our car approached them (carefully!). Nowadays we see no "wild" partridge, just flocks of half-grown birds released a few weeks before they are destined to be shot. They've obviously been intensively reared in pens as they don't seem to know that they can fly, just run wildly around the road until we can ease the car past them.