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 Photo-a-Day      (Sunday, 16th January, 2011) Views: 3,506 
Death at the Vicarage
 Death at the Vicarage   by Rev David Long  (Konica Minolta Dynax 7D)
A female sparrow hawk plucks its kill on the vicarage lawn.

Comment by dave marsh on 16th January 2011 at 00:20
A good action photo.


Comment by alan on 16th January 2011 at 02:12
We've all got to eat.


Comment by Mick on 16th January 2011 at 07:13
Great action shot of how wildlife works Rev.

Makes a change from the vicarage tea party being held on it.


Comment by peterp on 16th January 2011 at 08:03
mother nature


Comment by Tricia on 16th January 2011 at 10:41
Oh Yuk. I once saw this happen in my garden in England as it swooped on a flock of starlings on the lawn. It affected me for days! I know they are all God's creatures and have to eat to survive.. but I chased it off, telling it it was not going to do this in MY garden... lol


Comment by cullie on 16th January 2011 at 11:22
great shot rev send it nat geo have um put it on the front cover of there next issue


Comment by jeff haydock on 16th January 2011 at 19:35
Nice shot, I particularly like the eyes.


Comment by Linda on 16th January 2011 at 20:20
Great photo. We have sparrowhawk as a regular visitor to our garden. It does seem nature is cruel at times, but it is a beautiful and fascinating bird to watch in action. Well done!


Comment by Jean F (Wales) on 16th January 2011 at 21:41
Oh dear !!


Comment by honk on 16th January 2011 at 23:13
Good photo Reverend shows the plumage in detail, really fast bird is this one when it goes in for the kill. Also, Trisha better to leave the bird with its kill than chase it away, it will then need to kill again.


Comment by Fred Rosbottom on 17th January 2011 at 01:33
Great picture


Comment by Tricia on 17th January 2011 at 18:10
Hello Honk

The darn thing took it with it lol

Good job too!!!


Comment by Derek Callaghan on 18th January 2011 at 00:03
Call me a 'saddo' if you you like but I collect all the bird photos from photo a day and this is a belter


Comment by Rev David Long on 18th January 2011 at 08:25
Thanks for the comments. Altogether I took over 125 shots of this bird (thank goodness for digital!). Given that the camera, with a heavy telephoto lens, was hand-held, and I was shooting through windows, it's not surprising that the vast majority of shots were rejects - so I'm really thankful this turned out as well as it has.
The full story of this bird's kill is that, after moving its prey a couple of times, and seeming to do not much more than pluck it, the hawk eventually flew off, leaving the pigeon behind. In the gloom of the next morning I could just see the body was still there, and was surprised shortly after to see the bird return to carry on plucking feathers. A minute or two later, however, I looked out to see a fox staring back at me. I rushed off for the camera - to see it disappear over the cemetery wall. The pigeon had gone. The hawk returned, and strutted about the lawn, looking under bushes, mystified as to where its prey had gone. Then another fox came over the wall and into the garden, and made for where the bird had been. Disappointed that it had been beaten to it, the fox then walked around the garden for about five minutes, spraying its scent every now and again as it searched for food. All it got was a couple of crusts left out for the birds... and the light was so poor I only got very blurred images of its walkabout, sadly.


Comment by roman on 20th January 2011 at 21:06
I wish it would come round my area when its mating time fed up of coo coos drives me mad


Comment by John Chorlton on 23rd January 2011 at 23:42
Pigeon for dinner!


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