The Pheasant vs The Lapwing

In the early 80s, I worked on the tropical island of Borneo for 18 months. It was on my first run on the moors after I returned that I realised just how quiet they were. In the jungle, there was a constant cacophony of sound, so much you tended to become oblivious to it. Here you may get the occasional grouse who does not seem able to fly without its machine gun call, and in the spring there are the songs of the nightingales and meadow pipits. This season also brings the harrying of the Lapwings, dive bombing any visitor with their “pee-wit” call, a warning for straying too close to their nest. You may well be on a bike on tarmac but that’s too close for the Lapwing. Even pheasants are not immune to the Lapwing’s protestations. I watched this pheasant being harassed by a pair of Lapwings for a good ten minutes. It never battered an eyelid, just carrying on pecking in the grass and only looking up when a Lapwing almost came to blows. Fascinating. The nest must be very close.

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