- 'Yew only live twice': would have continued an historic weakness for Bond film bad puns but would have also required me to explain how I went back on New Year's Day after an enthusiastic but not exactly quiet dog walker flushed some Hawfinches from the same churchyard Yews in Lytchett Matravers on New Year's Eve.
- 'Coccothraustes in a Yew Tree': scans perfectly with 'And a Partridge in a Pear Tree', but too tenuous even by my low standards, and would have meant breaking a policy to not use scientific nomenclature in blog post titles (way too high-brow). Plus Christmas is so last year.
- 'Graveyard of ambition': well they were in a graveyard, and as a title it would have been a satirical comment on itself.
- 'Give me a Finch and I'll take a mile'. Inexplicably bad.
- 'Haw-py New Year': no, just too awful. (Haw-ful, surely?)
|Hawfinch, Lytchett Matravers: the recent invasion by this species has been a winter birding highlight of 2017-18|
|Although the birds were high in the Yews, by positioning the car carefully and staying inside the vehicle, I was able to photograph them against a more pleasing background than the harsh grey sky of New Year's Day|
|At least three birds were present|
|The impressive bill is clear to see here...|
|...while this picture shows the short, white-tipped tail|
|This crinkly-winged male refused to come out in the open|
|A Sparrowhawk against a rare bit of blue sky sent the Hawfinches deep into cover|