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Thread: Bird of Prey Watching

  1. #1
    Tribal Elder Humakt's Avatar
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    Bird of Prey Watching

    Today I spent the morning on the Isle of Sheppey at the raptor view point.
    Saw loads of stuff.
    Funny thing was, we saw absolutely nothing at the actual view point, but on the drive in and the drive out we saw...well, just about everything!
    It amazes me that buzzards are the commonest birds of prey in the UK. Probably because here in the south east they are still relatively rare - although in this year alone I have seen more than I have in the rest of my life - they're spreading!
    Saw this rough-legged buzzard:



    He came down and landed on a post some 20 yards away from us. I took a quick picture of him and then we tried to get closer for a better shot. But after just a couple of steps off he went. Unfortunately the picture I got was too out of focus. He was probably after the partridges who were busily running for their lives.



    Or maybe the flocks of goldfinches that kept sweeping from one clump of bushes to another:



    We also saw a couple of marsh harriers, but too far off to take a useful picture, and either a peregrine or hobby having a pop at some meadow pipits (the pipits got away) - hard to say: it was too fast and silhouetted. I'd like to think it was a peregrine, but it was almost certainly a hobby.

    And we saw absolutely shed loads of kestrels. When asked, I would have said they were the most common birds of prey in the UK. They must be down here. If I want I can go out and just about guarantee a kestrel sighting. Despite their prevalence they must still be my favourite bird of prey. We saw at least a dozen of them today. Here's a couple of pics:





    I don't know, there's something that gives me a tingle whenever I see a kestrel. Beautiful beautiful birds. Well, they're all beautiful. But a kestrel just that little bit more so.

    It seemed like the region's birds of prey came out for us today. What a lucky day!
    Last edited by Humakt; 30-10-2013 at 02:17 PM.
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  2. #2
    One with Nature
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    hello,
    Great stuff. where I live we have 2 Peregrines 1st was poisoned out of the 3, a Wake of Buzzards around 15 plus, had a Hobby fly in during the good spell, we have a regular visit from a Sparrow hawk too. Working with a wildlife officer as maybe installing a nest box for the Peregrines & my camera traps on a ledge nearby. The Peregrines in the nearby town are thriving too, I kept up to date of their progress. Gotta love wildlife
    Regards
    David

  3. #3
    One with Nature JonnyP's Avatar
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    I love seeing the raptors.. Buzzards are very common around here, much to the local Rook populations annoyance..

  4. #4
    Moderator jus_young's Avatar
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    Good to hear that Kestrels are relatively common there, in most places they are in sharp decline. Haven't seen the Peregrines around our place this year which is rather unusual.

  5. #5
    Tribal Elder shepherd's Avatar
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    great pics mate

  6. #6
    One with Nature
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    hello,
    Similar here with the Corvids & Gull populations, they don't give them a moments peace either. They're great for keeping the Feral Pigeon population down. The Peregrines down in the next town are thriving the Wildlife Officer keeps a check on what they're catching from remains on the ledges of their nest sites. I've got photo's of them feeding etc.. which BTW I had to apply for a special licence permission from both the Scottish Office & Scottish Conservation Office, plus notify the local Wildlife Trust Officer. Logs are passed onto the Scottish RSPB too.
    Regards
    David

    Quote Originally Posted by JonnyP View Post
    I love seeing the raptors.. Buzzards are very common around here, much to the local Rook populations annoyance..

  7. #7
    Tribesman
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    either a peregrine or hobby having a pop at some meadow pipits
    Must have been a Peregrine...Hobbies left for Africa around August.
    Nobody wins, unless everybody wins

  8. #8
    One with Nature JonnyP's Avatar
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    I can't remember if I have already posted this on here, but I was sat on the sofa a few years ago when I heard a thump on the roof above me. It turned out to be a sparrow hawk that had brought down a pigeon. It landed on the grass just outside the window, and I got some good shots of it..




    I also got a pic of a kestrel in one of the apple trees once too..

  9. #9
    Moderator jus_young's Avatar
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    I caught a sparrowhawk in the radiator of my Transit once. Got a real good close up look at it before going to pull it out. When it turned its head and looked at me, I jumped out of my skin! It managed to wriggle itself free and fly off, but what a stunning creature they are. Good photos there Jonny.

  10. #10
    Tribal Elder shepherd's Avatar
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    great photos jonny!

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