Page:Bird Life Throughout the Year (Salter, 1913).djvu/197

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upon by cattle, hence, while nesting began in March, young peewits but just hatched may be seen in the first week of July. The nesting season of the Heron extends over fully as long a period, for there are young still in the nests up to the middle of the month.

Some birds may be called habitual late-breeders; such are the buntings and notably the Yellowhammer. The Wood Pigeon will sometimes go on nesting far into the autumn. Almost as late the House Sparrow sometimes rears a last brood, and it is matter of common observation that Swallows and House Martins often have young in the nest until within a few days of their time of leaving us. The Barn Owl is sometimes quite irregular in its nesting, and will rear a family at almost any time of year. One may suspect that the Wren is still breeding thus late from the energy with which it scolds at a weasel, a bright-eyed streak of reddish-brown rustling amongst the ivy leaves on the bank. But at all seasons the wren is the watchman of the woods and never fails to spring his miniature rattle when suspicious characters are abroad. Such is the sparrow-hawk which at daybreak caught up a young pheasant from the coops to feed its young, which, having left the nest to perch near by, keep up a wailing outcry all day from the larch plantation.

Amongst thickets and on bushy hillsides we may hear the hawk-like call of the young Shrikes or Butcher-