Sparrowhawk

Screen Shot 2016-02-13 at 14.58.30Screen Shot 2016-02-13 at 14.54.48 The sparrowhawk is a medium sized hawk that is found across Europe and northern Asia.

They weight around 400g and have a quite short wingspan of 80 cm so they can slip threw the trees after their small prey.  They can measure 43cm.  Incredibly, female sparrowhawks can weigh nearly twice as much as the males.  The females are about the same size as a male goshawk.

As their name suggests, these small hawks mainly feed on small garden birds such as finches, sparrows and blackbirds.  The smaller male’s largest prey are blackbirds, but the much larder female can take down prey as big as themselves such as wood pigeons.  They are actually prey to larger predatory birds such as goshawks, golden eagles  and eagle owls.  The larger. Females will sometimes take jays and even magpies

Sparrowhawks, unlike other birds of prey, are very different from each other.  While the female is a light brown, the male has a blue-grey back and an orangey coloured chest.  As males age, their chest gets darker and when they’re old, they can have a really bright orange eye and a nearly red chest.

Above: male sparrowhawk attacking jay.

Top: the much larger female.