When I saw it by one of the car wing mirrors this morning it would have been easy to assume that it was simply treating its own reflection as an intruder, which is what I had thought the other day, but I noticed there was another bird nearby, presumably a female. I watched for a while, taking photos as I did so, and realised it was seeking out and displaying to its reflection but only on the side of the car that could be seen by the female.
|A grotty photo but then it was another miserable wet morning and it was taken through double glazing and two windows of a car. The other Dunnock was in the hedge which can be seen in the background.|
Now this may seem far fetched but this bird seemed to be trying to impress the female by displaying to his own reflection in the absence of another male or males.
|King of the car.|
To try and confirm what was going on I covered the wing mirror on the far side of the car.
When the female Dunnock went to the far side of the car the male Dunnock went to the far mirror even though it was covered. This suggests its behaviour wasn't a simple reaction to the accidental encounter of its reflection. This bird seemed to have learned where it could encounter its reflection in relation to the position of the female and returned to them to display in order to impress the female.
|What no mirror.|