Tuesday, February 20, 2007

20 February: Feed the birds

On our edge of the estate, several gardens have bird feeders of one sort or another.

However, you cannot choose your wildlife - this bird was feeding in our garden yesterday.

The photo is blurred, as it was taken through an upstairs window, on maximum zoom, and the bird was sitting in the shadow of the aucuba. If the bird hadn't moved, I wouldn't have seen it. But it was tearing at something with its hooked beak. A movement from a hundred wildlife films.

When it flew away, I went to see what was left. Not a scrap of flesh, bone, or even beak or foot. Only feathers.

Not sure, but it might have been a pigeon that the sparrowhawk ate.


Ruby in Bury said...

That photo which caught my rapt and horrified attention just before I got to the last line of your post was most baffling - I thought the mystery bird, whatever it was, had spontaneously dematerialised leaving only its feathers behind. Like the rapture for birds had just happened. :-D

Z said...

Ruby, that is a horrible and very funny thought.

Life's 'skittles and beer' for that sparrowhawk, isn't it.

KAZ said...

That b@$t£rd sparrowhawk.
How can a bird eat another bird?
I mean - I can just about cope with what cats do to birds - but not this.

stitchwort said...

At least the sparrowhawk ate it, which is more than a cat would have done. And it wasn't the skylark or the wren - 2 of my more favoured birds.

Sparrowhawks usually take sparrows, tits, and similar small birds, but these feathers seem to be from something larger. There are collared doves around, but they are a rather different colour, so pigeon is my best guess.