Feb Day 9 Photo Challenge

Male Sparrowhawk

The weather was cold today and i decided to venture out in the freezing cold and take a chance on a nice sighting or 2. I sat for 4 hours and with the ground being solid i could not feel my feet after 2 hours. Ruth had made me lunch and a flask and a bag of nuts to munch on.

It was great when the Barn Owl appeared and caught a vole on its 3 attempt. It went for cover in the barn so it went very quiet. Then i spotted a Kestrel hunting in the field to my left but it was to far away to get an image. Then it made a kill and went back to the building where it lives. On its way in it landed on the roof and to my delight a second one arrived and landed next to

A buzzard flew high over the field and just went higher and higher. It was then i tucked into my peanuts and while i crunched away i looked up and spotted a object about 15 feet on the grass mound in front of the hide. I quickly grabbed my camera and slowly pushed the lens hood through the gap in the hide and took 2 images before it took off.

Not a lot today to talk about but it was great to see 4 species of birds,

Key information

Sparrowhawks are small birds of prey. They’re adapted for hunting birds in confined spaces like dense woodland, so gardens are ideal hunting grounds for them. Adult male sparrowhawks have bluish-grey back and wings and orangey-brown bars on their chest and belly. Females and young birds have brown back and wings, and brown bars underneath. Sparrowhawks have bright yellow or orangey eyes, long, yellow legs and long talons. Females are larger than males, as with all birds of prey.

What they eat:

Mainly small birds, but 120 different species have been recorded. Males can catch birds up to thrush size, but females, being bigger, can catch birds up to pigeon size. Some sparrowhawks catch bats.

Measurements:

Length:28-38cmWingspan:55-70cmWeight:110-196g (male); 185-342g (female)

Population:

 UK breeding:35,000 pairs

Written by

I am 63 years old and and since a boy have had an interest in wildlife and in particular birds. I help my Dad with the rearing of young finches and other birds. I had many small birds as pets and as i got older and joined the Military i purchsed my first Camera, and fold out Kodak. Over a 22 year period i enjoyed many countries outside the uk and observed many species of birds. When i left the military in 2000, i bought my first digital camera a Canon 450D with a Tamron 70-300 and started my journey on capturing images of birds and animals. I quickly learned that there was a lot more to getting a good image of a bird, so i started to research the best settings for my camera in order to capture a better image. Over a 12 month period i realised that needed to invest in a better camera and lens and after research bought a Canon 50D and a 100-400 Lens. It was 2013 when i really got to grips with the setup and came across a lovely Short Eared Owl. From that meeting i started to concentrate on Owls as they fasinated me. From Canon to Olympus i recently jumped ship again to Sony. The variety of birds i have captured over a 10 year period is vast and at present i have a wildlife hide in lancashire where most of my images are captured.

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