Each year at Einar, the Linnets build their nests and raise their chicks. It takes two weeks from laying to hatching and two more from hatching to fledging. It’s an astonishing rate of growth.
They stand guard on the wind-burnt Sycamore twigs. I love them.
There are two or three nests deep within the bushes every year.
Linnets lay either four or five eggs and seem to have two broods and no more here on Westray.
In a few weeks the individuals in these eggs will be flying around my garden.
I was sure that Linnets must have been constant companions of humans on these islands, so I checked Reverend George Low’s Fauna Orcadensis from 1813:
May be caught? Easily tamed? Confined in cages? Oh dear.