... and 1 Sparrowhawk

Sunday morning (before the tour of rural Hampshire) was Bird Count day in our house.  To be honest I suspect some of it was guesswork.  Sparrows for instance are numerous - and they move about so counting them is about noting that there is one per fence paling, more or less, in the line up for the feeders and there are X number of fence palings, and another 6 or so on the feeders at any given time.

We guessed 19.  There might be more, we are fairly sure there are no fewer. 

The rest of the list went:

11 Starlings (they very kindly all sat in the Gingko tree together)

5 Long-tailed tits

8 Wood pigeons

1 each of Robin, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Magpie

3 Herring Gulls (and dozens of kittiwakes that nearly landed but appeared to be scared of the pigeons, so pulled up and circled round a bit, but as they never landed we never counted them)

3 Carrion Crows and .....

,,,, 1 Sparrowhawk.  It stood on the compost bin for a while, then hopped up onto the fence (all sparrows had fled for cover by this stage), but when F went to get a camera it departed.

Here is a flick of the compost bin (sans sparrow hawk) - try to imagine a sparrowhawk sitting on it calmly surveying the garden.  Sparrowhawks have a smart, stripy front - like me.

Picture borrowed from t'Internet 


  1. Super impressed that you spotted a sparrowhawk!

  2. Hari OM
    OOOOOHHH, I say... what a lovely visitor to have. Though other birdies may not be so keen on the idea... Well done on the count! All I saw was seagulls. Funny that. Hugs and whiskeries, YAM-aunty xxx

  3. I am seeing the hawk sitting on the fence and wondering if he makes as much noise as the hawk we see each morning. He is HUGE and Loud and shrieks from the tree tops each morning at day break. that is a lot of birds you counted Tigger... and all in your yard.

  4. I used to see lots of sparrows back in the day. Not so much nowadays. Sad really. But we do get lots of other birds. Angela

  5. I've often wondered how accurate those backyard bird counts are. My own contribution wouldn't add much. Fun to do though. Very few birds around in the last year, so I'm hoping for more sightings this spring.

  6. You are a cat bird watcher Tigger. I saw a Sparrowhawk pounce on a sparrow on a fence post and I see how it got its name. So beautiful and definitely a bird of prey.

  7. Since moving here we have done our best to attract the small birds into the garden, however, that seems to have also attracted a sparrowhawk too. Beautiful bird though.

  8. Wonderful array of our feathered friends ` Hawk is impressive ~

    Wishing you good health, laughter and love in your days,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  9. No birds in my garden today…..I reckon they’re all tucked away in the tree branches…..it spilling it down out there and rather cold. Yes this is summer in Melbourne, a cold front has been visiting and there’s even snow up in the High Country.

  10. I had meant to do the bird count but things got in the way - as sadly they have for months in truth.. elderly parents.. care homes.. accidents ... one thing after another, it seems never to end. Oh, to have a sparrow hawk moment of stillness... My laptop even went up in smoke - aghh...
    But I am moaning and should be grateful.
    By the way I've been having massive trouble posting comments as Bike Shed - and in some cases at all - from my phone. I'm currently somewhat bereft without the laptop but using the big PC tonight but its' cold here in the garden office!

  11. That;s cat tv for my 4, luckily they are too lazy to catch any.


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