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Unwelcome visitor


By dorjac


This morning at 7.45am there was an unwelcome visitor to our winter garden. The leaves are off now. The view is clear for the raptor’s return. I thought oh lovely, two chaffinches feeding under the Ash Tree. Not seen two before. Pretty little birds, perhaps a pair. Soon there was only one. The villain just ‘getting fed’ he would say, was a male Sparrow Hawk. All the other birds flew off in terror and not come back yet, as far as I can see. We are about 7 minutes walk from the town centre and a small garden; yet we get some amazing visitors. As an afterthought I also put some fox cub pictures up. They were very young in 2007 when the pictures were taken. Had their black socks on and no fear. Came right up to me to pose for pictures. Then Mrs Yappy Fox gave them the alarm shriek and after that it was never possible to get near them. She lived next door(back of the shed) which was empty at the time and popped over and fed them. She used to shriek at me from next door when I was gardening in the evening. The fourth fox who had cubs under the shed and easily the noisiest

It seems that when Sparrow Hawks kill they stand on top of the victim until there is no life.

This gives a chance to get a picture through the kitchen window. I know it is cruel, but it is no use being ‘fluffy’ about nature red in………

Then,thank goodness. he flew off with his prize

These photos are from a DVD of garden photos taken off the camera chip. I went down the garden and heard a noise at the back of the shed. I went and got my camera and managed pictures of the cubs while mum’s back was turned.

They are very tiny and no fear. The biggest,who I later called Golden Fox was very bold and came right up to me. He grew up a fine handsome dog fox.
He sometimes returned to sleep in the garden under the hawthorn, as if he owned the place

One of them became lame in one back leg. He left 2 weeks after the other 3. I fed him up as best I could ,as he was so tiny, one day he limped off to take his chances. The spaces our urban foxes live in have gone over to infill building in the last 3-4 years. So they are not seen as much as before.

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Wonderful to catch those wild animals dorjac. As you say its nature red in tooth and claw. Beautiful handsome bird. We have noticed too how the small birds go into hiding for a couple or more days after a kill. Those fox cubs look sweet, and their urban lives are amazing too.

30 Nov, 2009


we regularly have a sparrow hawk 'kill' in the garden. in the spring one took a collared dove. there was a pile of feathers that were taken by allsorts of birds within 5 mins of the hawk flying off. so although the birds scatter when the hawk comes through they dont stay away for long. and the noise of the alarm calls is spectacular too.

nature can be beautiful in such a bizzare way cant it.

30 Nov, 2009


Thank you Mad and Seaburngirl. In a way it is good that this can go on in a heavily built up are; that these creatures can adopt to an urban environment. Some time ago,when there were some old disused factory buildings near us, Kestrels nested there. They stoop to kill. I was astonished to see a dazed Kestrel on the path one morning. Missed its target. It seemed Ok. One of our blackbird fledglings was being fed on the fence. I was in the garden and a sparrow hawk went for it and missed! All that hard work that blackbirds do to rear a scattered brood, gone to waste, if it had been on target.

1 Dec, 2009

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