Sparrowhawk drowning a dove (image Spar 02)

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Sparrowhawk drowning a dove (image Spar 02) - Sparrowhawks
Sparrowhawks are regular visitors to our garden - I usually find a least a couple of piles/circles of feathers every week, though actual sightings are few and far between and are generally just fleeting glimpses as a bird darts through.

However, earlier this year I witnessed (and was able to photograph ) some extraordinary behaviour!

As I sat in our garden room enjoying the late afternoon Spring sunshine, a Sparrowhawk darted over the fence into the midst of a group of 12-15 feral pigeons/doves which had been feeding on the lawn but had just exploded into the air as the Sprawk appeared.

The hawk struck one of the white doves in flight, grappled with it and after a couple of mid-air somersaults flew another 5 metres or so and landed in the middle of one of my garden ponds with the dove firmly clasped in its talons.

It then treaded water (by flapping its wings) and held the dove beneath the surface for a couple of minutes until the dove had drowned.

The Sprawk then dragged itself and the dove onto the lawn at the side of the pond and spent 40 minutes or so plucking and consuming its prey.

Whether or not the pond landing was deliberate or accidental I cannot say, but once in there the Sprawk certainly seemed to know what it was doing in terms of drowning the dove!
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Sparrowhawk (image Sparh 03)

Return to: Sparrowhawks or Other Birds or Gallery

Also in: Sparrowhawks

Sparrowhawk (image Sparh 01)
Sparrowhawk (image Sparh 03)
Sparrowhawk (image Sparh 04 - portait)
Sparrowhawk (image Sparh 04)
 

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