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Tony Grist

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Partridges [Jun. 13th, 2019|08:29 am]
Tony Grist
We'd never seen partridges before- at least not close up, waddling round the front garden. They were the red legged variety- which is non-native and bred in bulk for shooting. I've no idea where they blew in from. "They came because we've been planting pear trees," I said.

Actually partridges prefer not to sit in trees. They're ground nesting birds. And only fly under pressure- like when a covey of hoorays is blasting away at them with shotguns. There are those who say the text of the Christmas carol is corrupt but I think the writer was perfectly aware of the nesting habits of partridges and- as with the rest of the poem- indulging in a little mild surrealism.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: puddleshark
2019-06-13 08:02 am (UTC)
We used to have a pair of partridges in the ponies' field, refugees from the local shooting estate. I used to love watching them scuttle along the hedge.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-06-13 08:56 am (UTC)
They're pretty birds- and really rather endearing. I hope our pair return.
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[User Picture]From: madman101
2019-06-13 08:24 am (UTC)
So, they like being around pear trees, but not so much nesting in them.

?
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-06-13 08:58 am (UTC)
I was thinking of the Christmas carol, The Twelve days of Christmas, which begins "On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me/ a partridge in a pear tree."

IRL partridges and pear trees have nothing to do with one another.
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[User Picture]From: madman101
2019-06-13 03:44 pm (UTC)
Right - I got your reference. I was just unclear otherwise.

Now I know!

:)
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[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2019-06-13 12:12 pm (UTC)
Apparently, partridges can sit up in trees but it is a decidedly rare occurrence. And now you know I'll be singing the carol in my head all day. There are worse earworms to have.
:)
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2019-06-13 12:19 pm (UTC)
I've been thinking how tradition nursery rhymes and carols (some of them anyway) are among the finest lyric poems in the English language.
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