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Sparrowhawk in garden

Hi all, bit of an open question here - over the past two days a sparrowhawk has taken at least two birds from my garden, should I be taking some action to deter it? It's taken a few birds from the feeders in the past year, but this seems like an escalation!
It's a bit gut-wrenching to see the birds we get so attached to being killed (so far it's taken starlings and house sparrows, and we also get blue and great tits, wood pigeons, collared doves, goldfinches, dunnocks, and robins), but then the sparrowhawks needs food too. Any advice or thoughts would be great :)
  • Same story as mine ! But the sparrowhawk is coming everyday in my garden now ! Thankfully miss some prey sometimes... At first I agree it's a superb bird but in my case now, it becomes a bit hard to witness and trying to do something about it ! Someone on my post gave some ideas (maybe not great as in an other hand it can hurt bird?). But in my simple opinion I think that as human being we already modify everything so why not trying to protect a bit more some of the birds... Also I read just now that the sparrowhawk recovered where other small birds population are in decline so the ecosystem is already unbalanced then ?! Anyway I was going to try to put some fencing wiring on some spots to stop it from going through but let the smaller one...
  • Hi Ctatou. I do sympathise but, if it were me, I would be super pleased and honoured to have such a thriving avian community which is sufficiently healthy as to support a natural top predator. Always remember that the avian raptors provide the prey species with an indispensable service in honing their escape reflexes, and other behaviour, thus ensuring that only the healthiest (or 'fittest') individuals survive to breed. In each breeding year there is naturally a high surplus of prey species whose 'function' it is to support their predator populations and, in turn, hone the hunting skills of their next generation. If the former do decline, for whatever reason, then the predators will be the first to notice and will decline in tandem to balance the equation.
    There will always be people who, often for emotive reasons, will try to justify the persecution of avian raptors, and pigeon fanciers and racers, for example, often try to push these agendas for slightly different reasons. In so doing what the latter tend to forget, or ignore, is that - were there no avian raptors then there would be no pigeon racing as the pigeons speed and aerial skills are only the result of generations of natural selection under the watchful eye of the sparrow hawk and peregrine.
  • Hi Paulo, I can send it to you if you want ! I am not against nature at all. However we save our species as human being even the weakest one... I believe at that point the natural balance does not exist anymore. It is a beautiful bird indeed, I believe that ALL youngs are weak if not protected so it's not argument for me to say that the birds will take the weakest as all fledging are, it's a bit down to luck ! Anyway we are encourage to feed the birds because their habitats are destroyed and so on, the rsbp sells a ton of birds food and wildlife food! Is that natural to you?!
    I guess if you start taking care of a living creature anybody ,would get attached, you don't do that to see them killed or it's very insensitive!
  • This is from the rspb : Birds don’t need feeding in summer: False

    In winter, supplementary food is often the only option for birds as natural food sources like berries get buried under snow and ice and insects are few and far between. But in summer birds will still be grateful for extra treats, as many are busy raising their young. The RSPB recommends little and often, and says that birds probably won’t eat quite as much as during the colder months.

    I don't personally am for feeding the birds all the time as I say I planted few different natural food like sunflower, teasel, hawthorn, apple tree, cherry tree etc but why the rspb would encourage so if it's wrong ?
    Also we can read that the only reason why they are not in total decline is because people feed the birds !
    Otherwise sparrowhawk would also be extinct due to not enough little birds ! All of this because WE have destroy a lot of their natural food...
  • It's all a question of perception perhaps. I see a lots of birds in my garden and they come even in winter enjoying the apples that I leave at the back of the garden, like a regular fieldfare that arrive early winter fighting then with the blackbirds ! If it is really snowy, I would give them a bit of food yes because I can and that they don't need to starve. But I don't know how we can say that they do better outside because I don't see them ! All what I can see is that since the Sparrowhawk the number decreased and not many young survive...
  • It does upset you to watch the birds your used to feeding become dinner for this Hawk but we can't ignore or butt into natural selection or natures way .
  • Thanks, I don't have the hawk anymore. And we do that all the time, playing with nature... Reintroducing one species there, trying to contain another one for all the valid reason in the world....because as human being we have to control all of this. Etc... So I don't understand why my post should be analysed and moralised. The society decides what is acceptable or not and that is not !
    In between, I am not killing any creatures, I love all of them. Just rearranging stuffs around in my garden to welcom the most! So if the sparrowhawk does not come anymore, it's because I added shrubs and other things, all naturals !
  • People are missing the point here.
    You put food out to feed the birds.
    By doing that, you are feeding another bird - The Sparrow hawk. What's the problem.
    They all deserve to feed on something. If we don't like it. TUFF.
    Don't put food out for the small birds. Sparrow hawk won't come. Problem solved.