This Should be the Patron Bird of Golf

Eurasian Skylark, Wallasey Golf Club, England, May 14, 2013.

Eurasian Skylark, Wallasey Golf Club, England, May 14, 2013.

If you’ve ever played links golf in the British Isles, you’ve seen and heard Eurasian skylarks, which nest in tall grass and sing while hovering above the ground, often in strong winds, sometimes for as long as an hour.

At Wallasey Golf Club (virtually next door to Royal Liverpool) I got closer to a skylark than I ever have before:

P1060153

The U.K.’s skylark population has fallen by something like ninety percent in the past thirty years, primarily as a result of changes in British agricultural practices which I don’t completely understand. One environment in which they continue to thrive is linksland, and their singing has provided the soundtrack for many of my favorite golf rounds during the past twenty years.

Wallasey Golf Club. Music provided by skylarks.

Wallasey Golf Club. Background music provided by skylarks.

At Formby Golf Club, yesterday, I didn’t see any skylarks, but I did see this, near the seventeenth tee:

P1060330

She was hunting for mice, and when she spotted one in the rough she jumped:

P1060336

I also saw these—which, for some reason, were sitting in the grass. (Maybe they were trying to hatch golf balls.)

P1060297

And I saw lots of these, especially on the practice green:

wagtailThat bird is called a wagtail, because—duh—it wags its tail.

 

Leave a Reply