Sparrowhawk Table Manners

To: "John Leonard" <>, "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Sparrowhawk Table Manners
From: "Wendy" <>
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2006 00:10:38 +1000
Thanyou all for this thead,
It explains an experience I had one day.
Walking out my back door I was greeted by a cloud of Spotted Turtle-Dove
feathers. I'd thought it was a lot of feathers for the a bird having just
been taken, which I assumed was what I'd interupted. I now think it was
being plucked on my garage roof - not enough ground space in a small urban
back yard, and too many chooks. I just caught a glimpse of a retreating
raptor and the thud of the dove, it had tried to take with it, dropping into
my neighbours yard.
My Best Sparrowhawk experience was again walking out my back door, in rather
gloomy conditions. A bird had just landed in my neighbours leafless Silver
Birch. The form looked rather like the ever-present turtle doves, but seemed
wrong. As none of my hens, roosters or any of the wild birds were showing
any concern I decided I must be mistaken. They always tell me first about
any such visitors. However, too all of our suprise, a group of sparrows
alighted in the tree near mystery-bird. While the branches were still
bobbing from them landing, mystery-bird showed its true colours! It took
off, grabbing a still unsettled sparrow as it passed, and flew off with it.
They were horrified! The sparrow group spent ages after that hiding in
bushes and chattering angrily.
The sparrowhawk had an appropriately named meal.
Wendy Moore,
Coburg, (Melbourne, Vic)

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