in the field -
a hong kong
a hong kong
The Black Isle 21 - 23 July
A summer break from Hong Kong. My wife and I headed to Britain, mainly for family matters. Our first stop was on the Black Isle, north of Inverness. I spent some time watching birds at a feeder through the kitchen window of the house where we were staying. The garden offers a good cover of bushes and trees and the feeder attracts a variety of common British birds.
The birds tend to come to the feeder and remain for a little while before retreating to the cover of the trees and bushes in the garden. They have a reason for being wary. A Eurasian Sparrowhawk in search of easy pickings is a regular visitor. On the first day I was there, a female sparrowhawk flew in and perched on a frame supporting protective netting over a patch of vegetables (visible in the first photograph above). The hawk waited patiently before plunging down into one of the bushes below the frame. It remained - an invisible presence in the vegetation - for several minutes before emerging and flying away. The Collins Bird Guide notes that the sparrowhawk "hunts with surprise attack and fast flight, often low amongst trees, bushes and buildings. Will even pursue small birds on foot under and through bushes".