Regular correspondent Callum Herd sent me this photo, with the message:
After constantly having sparrowhawks diving at my bird feeders throughout the summer, imagine my horror to look out and see that one had landed on top of the net (essential for keeping out herons) over my pond, and it would appear it now fancied fish as a change of diet!
The weight of the bird meant that the net sagged onto the water, which obviously brought the sparrowhawk into range for having a go at the fish.
However, at this time of year, the fish are usually always at the bottom, as it is warmer there.
After all my concerns, the sparrowhawk thankfully only wanted to have a bath – which it was able to do – and even had a shower from the adjacent
Callum’s photo clearly shows his visitor to be a male sparrowhawk –more colourful and much smaller than a female.
The piercing orange eyes and yellow talons only add to his lethal beauty.
Sparrowhawks are regular visitors to my own garden which is “sparrow central”.
We always know when one arrives, as there is a sudden deathly silence as all the spuggies dive into cover and freeze until the danger has passed.
Mind you, I have never had the good fortune to see one bathing and showering in my pond!