Feeder encounter

Shortly before gloaming this afternoon, I realised that the bird-feeders in the garden must be empty, so I went to refill them. Having made some long-put-off, simple repairs to the bird-table, involving a few cable-grips, I replenished its feeders, plus the one by the kitchen window, then went to do the same to the feeder hanging from the cherry tree.

I was half-way through filling the last feeder, when I heard a high-pitched seep! call from the adjacent thorn tree. I was fairly sure it was my first redwing of the winter, but, look as I might, I couldn't spot it—even though it obligingly continued to seep!

Then a blaze of activity, and a sparrowhawk landed in the tree about ten feet from me: slate-grey—a male. The presumed redwing went very quiet. Amazingly, the sparrowhawk had not seen me. He sat there for a good minute, annoyingly obscured by twigs, before he took off and headed back the way he had come, accompanied by a final taunting seep! from the thorn tree.

No photograph, obviously, so here is one I took of a more successful sparrowhawk a few years back:

A sparrowhawk near my bird-feeder in April, 2007.

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