FOR AND AGAINST RAPTORS

  • Brok said,

    The balance of nature requires that there should be raptors.They take and dispose of the diseased, the sick and the weak.Raptors like the beautiful sparrow hawk are as essential to the well being of the prey species as the lion is to the great herds of the African plain. The metabolism of birds is such that they cannot go very long without eating and raptors will endeavour to capture a meal wherever they can. Although we may be distressed to see a capture and kill, to allow for this is to assist in nature’s great scheme. Logically, to set up barriers is pure nimbyism. NIMBY – not in my back yard.

     I wonder what will happen when the (encouraged) Jays and their cousins the Magpies decide that the meagre pickings of the bird table are not sufficient for their winter metabolism and that a Blue tit or Dunnock or two would make an ideal dietary supplement. Or do we not believe in the predatory instincts of the crow familly?

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  • Bev said,

  • Perhaps its in natures great scheme for the sparrow hawks that visit our garden to catch All 4 song thrushes one by one so that soon there will be none surviving.We have 4 sparrowhawks living within a short distance here and they decimate the gardens. Not to mention the bull finches blackbirds, long tailed tits taken before our eyes feeding with young not ill or weak at the time. Bull finches too are in decline .

    I will continue to try and help our songbirds survive as long as nature and man permits and while a sparrow hawk is a very handsome bird to see we do not wish to see it on our garden in great numbers. While ever the jays and jackdaws chase it away (well thats nature too ) they will continue to be fed on our garden eating nuts and birdcake we put out for them daily. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and enjoyment gained from helping to try and sustain song bird numbers by feeding birds in their gardens

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    Hello Brok and Hi Bev

    Brok,  I know the predatory instincts of the crow family, but sparrowhawks do so much damage and carnage

    Garden birds have enough problems without sparrowhawks decimating an area.   I don’t think people realise how much damage they do.   The garden birds come to see a garden as a place of safety and a source of food.  feeding helps them all through the year, especially during winter.  I know you won’t agree but there are just too many sparrowhawks.

    Sparrowhawks don’t just take the weak and the old.  I have seen a sparrowhawk catch a young, healthy blackbird.  Sparrowhawks take anything that is there and come back until there is nothing left to kill

    Bev,  Did you take a look at Songbird Survival?

    I’ve been computerless and then internet problems came, so it’s good to be back to Bird Table News

    Trisha

    3 thoughts on “FOR AND AGAINST RAPTORS

    1. Bev

      Hi Trish,
      Glad to see you back with bird table news! I agree that there are two many sparrow hawks and the song birds seem to be really suffering in numbers these days. I have indeed joined song bird survival a few weeks ago and find it very useful and interesting. Anything we can do to help the decline of our song birds is well worth doing I believe!
      I didn’t realise we had four sparrow hawks visiting our garden until two weeks ago. I knew we had a male and female but then a smaller male and female appeared in a tree at the top of the garden. I think they may possibly be the offspring of the two adults, consequently its doubled our predator population. If all the song bird population would double to the same extent we wouldn’t have a such a decline in song birds.
      At last the jays and jackdaws have returned to the garden after a short spell away and boy did we miss them! I have seen swallows chase and mob the male hawk a few times but of course they have now gone to warmer climates till next year! I thought sparrowhawks owned territories but obviously in our area there seems to be room for 4 they think! Anyway the wire trellis round shrubs, bamboo canes and caged feeders really seem to help most of the time.
      We were very upset last week when we were watching a nuthatch hiding a peanut in our stone wall when suddenly the male sparrow hawk swooped down and took him away! He certainly wasn’t sick or weak when his life came to an awful end! Anyway the jackdaws are on “patrol” again so I feel a bit happier. They seem to think our garden is theirs and 12 or so are always perched in the trees during the day watching and eating. The other birds all eat when they are around too including the jays so its nice to see. There’s often a standoff between two of the jackdaws and a male pheasant who always makes them wait until he has had his fill of food.
      The crows are across in the wood at the moment they come on the garden occasionally now but more in nov/dec .While the jackdaws are in the trees all is well on the garden and the birds seem to know it and there’s a feeding frenzy going on at the moment as I write this!
      Kind regards, Bev.

    2. Trish Post author

      Hi Bev, Sorry it’s taken a while to reply, but I’m still having a bit of computer trouble

      Thank you for welcoming me back though!

      I think it’s amazing you’ve seen swallows chase and mob the male hawk! Wow. You’re so lucky to have enough swallows to do that .

      It’s wonderful how all the birds react to each other isn’t it. I think I said before that, maybe the fact that we have a lot of rooks makes the sparrowhawks stay out of the garden.

      All that you have told me is really interesting I’ve put it on Bird Table News

      I think you do really well with all the bird feeding, and you have so many birds visiting. It must be one of the livliest birdy gardens around
      Cheers and take care.

    3. Trish Post author

      Hi Bev, Sorry it’s taken a while to reply, but I’m still having a bit of computer trouble

      Thank you for welcoming me back though!

      I think it’s amazing you’ve seen swallows chase and mob the male hawk! Wow. You’re so lucky to have enough swallows to do that . And the fact that these small birds gang up on a hawk is amazing as well.

      It’s wonderful how all the birds react to each other isn’t it. I think I said before that, maybe the fact that we have a lot of rooks makes the sparrowhawks stay out of the garden.

      All that you have told me is really interesting I’ve put it on Bird Table News

      I think you do really well with all the bird feeding, and you have so many birds visiting. It must be one of the livliest birdy gardens around

      It must have been amazing to see a nuthatch hide a nut in a wall – it’s so sad what happened
      Cheers and take care.

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