Great Birding Moments # 33: Collared Sparrowhawk
Whenever I hear the alarm calls of the birds in our garden, especially the honeyeaters, I look skywards. I usually expect to see a bird of prey soaring overhead. Sometimes it turns out to be a Black Kite or a Little Eagle. At other times it will be a Brown Falcon sneaking through the lower trees trying to catch an unwary smaller bird.
Several days ago I was watching the Test Cricket (Australia v. India) on television. I heard the usual alarm calls outside and raced out into the garden armed with my camera. I was rewarded with closeup photos of a juvenile Collared Sparrowhawk. This species looks very similar to the juvenile Brown Goshawk – except for the size. Both species occur in our area. This one was definitely a Collared Sparrowhawk because it was about the size of an Australian Magpie.
Collared Sparrowhawks are found throughout most of Australia. Their preferred habitats include forests, woodlands, inland scrubs and farmlands. Their breeding season ranges from August through to December, so this one could well be from last year’s breeding season.
Click on any photo to enlarge the image.