Sparrowhawk

One of the biggest bird surprises we’ve had recently was the visit of a sparrowhawk clutching prey.

We’ve had sparrowhawks before, but they’ve never loitered for more than a few seconds.This bird though settled at the far end of our garden and busied herself with plucking an unfortunate small bird no doubt snatched from a neighbouring feeder moments earlier.

Our certainty of the birds gender was based on her bulky stature. And with a dark streaked rather than barred chest I assumed a young bird as well.

We watched her intently for at least five minutes as she busied herself with the gruesome business of devouring her prey. From a distance it wasn’t easy to distinguish, but the ex bird could have been a starling.

When finished she took to the air, still clutching the bird remains and flew directly down the garden path then away over the house.

All that was left when we inspected the murder scene was a few small feathers and a grizzly length of intestine.

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  • About

    In this blog we'll describe the day to day comings and goings of the birds in our Devon garden.
  • About us

    Tony is a naturalist and environmental artist. Laura is a free range creative web and print designer. We've recently moved from the village of Ipplepen to the town of Newton Abbot with our two children Ralph and Oli, our dog Henry, and numerous cats (none of whom would ever dream of eating birds).
  • Species List

    List of species, including only those birds that land in the garden:
    Blackbird
    Blackcap
    Blue tit
    Brambling
    Bullfinch
    Carrion Crow
    Chaffinch
    Chiff chaff
    Coal tit
    Collared dove
    Dunnock
    Fieldfare
    Goldcrest
    Goldfinch
    Great spotted woodpecker
    Great tit
    Greenfinch
    House Sparrow
    Jay
    Long tailed tit
    Magpie
    Mistle thrush
    Nuthatch
    Pied wagtail
    Redwing
    Robin
    Siskin
    Song thrush
    Sparrowhawk
    Starling
    Wood pigeon
    Wren

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