Sparrowhawk attack

Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 3,358
I was so sad to see a sparrowhawk get one of "my" goldfinches just after lunch today.  We're not sure whether both birds hit our big front window (there was a big bang and feathers went flying everywhere) but the hawk had the finch between its claws and then flew off.  The magnolia where the bird feeders hang not far from the front window has lost all it's leaves today so the little birds have lost their protective cover. I'm hoping the hawk won't be back for more but fear it might.  I know it's in the natural order of things butit was still upsetting.
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  • madpenguinmadpenguin Isle of WightPosts: 1,553
    It can be upsetting when you see 'nature in tooth and claw' close up.
    But as you say it is the natural order of things,no worse than lions hunting in the Serengeti,they all need to hunt to eat and survive.
    We just pop down to the supermarket.
    “Every day is ordinary, until it isn't.” - Bernard Cornwell-Death of Kings
  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 3,196
    Goldfinches are jerks. Being pretty doesn't mean they can should away with that kind of behaviour.
  • PosyPosy Posts: 1,591
    Think of it this way - I bet you watch all those wildlife programmes and marvel over the wild birds and beasts doing their thing. You have just had a brief episode in your own garden: fantastic! They all have their own beauty and they all have to eat. It's wildlife.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 55,031
    Speaking of wildlife programmes ... did anyone see David Attenborough's new serial Dynasties?    Amazing ... what a privilege to witness the lives of those chimps in such detail.
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Third rock from the sunPosts: 24,981
    I had a sparrow hawk catch a starling at my bird feeder in the back garden. There was a tremendous racket and a bang on the kitchen window and the sparrowhawk caught the bird as it slid down the window and last week I saw a kestrel plucking the feathers out of one of 'my' sparrows in the front garden whilst it perched on the edge of one of my ceramic pots. I was upset but as you say Lizzie, its the natural order.
    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • It's interesting that both these examples involved the victim bird hitting a window. We have a pair of magpies who seem to specialise in driving birds from the feeder into our conservatory windows and then picking them off. I watched them take a starling this way but did go out to intervene when the next victim was a greater spotted woodpecker as I couldn't bear to watch them pecking at it when it was clearly still very much alive.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 3,358
    Wild Edges said "Goldfinches are jerks" ?  Explain please.
  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 3,196
    I'm anthropomorphising slightly there and I have a bias towards hawks. Most finches are fairly aggressive birds, their population recovery is a good indicator of how they dominate the garden feeders and food supplies. Watch them sparring around the feeders and keeping the smaller birds from feeding. I have a 4 hole feeder and get flocks of over 20 goldfinches and smaller flocks of other finches though so maybe I'm causing the problems slightly. Planting teasils around the place helps as they have something to do while they wait.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 25,187
    w.edges - I'm thrilled that I have a new constant 'supply' of goldfinches at this house. They've never been plentiful round here. However, they are quite aggressive to other birds, and very messy!  :D
    I might not be happy to see any of them being killed, but on the other hand, I'd be thrilled to have sparrowhawks, or any other birds of prey,  visiting. All part of the cycle.
    We did have a few s.hawk visit at the last [ more rural] garden, as well as the buzzards which are plentiful.  :) 
    Being taken by a certain other creature would be a different matter altogether. I won't mention which kind, as I don't want the usual aggro that accompanies it.... ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 3,358
    You're right Wild Edges, the finches are certainly aggressive, but I'd never seen them before we came here and I find them very entertaining to watch. The blue tits and robins are clever though as they seem to get there first. We have lots of buzzards on top of the hill opposite so I am wondering what will happen when the red kites arrive, we've seen them along the M4 so it won't be long. Beautiful birds though, my brother and his wife used to run the red kite centre at Tregaron when they were first trying to introduce them near the Elan valley.  
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