Saturday, October 13, 2012

Talon contest winner...?


Now that autumn is well under way and there's frost on the roof every morning there has been an influx of small birds into the garden - various tits, goldfinches, greenfinches and the like. So this afternoon I cleaned the bird tables and feeders and bought some wild bird food, in preparation for the winter garden bird season. 

It turns out that I wasn't the only one anticipating the arrivals on the bird table.....



































This beautiful visitor from higher up the food chain appeared on the garden fence.























I've never really had a good look at a sparrowhawk's talons before, but take a look at that amazing extended middle toe. 

When I was at school I had a chemistry master who had an index finger like that, which he used to single out hapless pupils that he fired questions at....

9 comments:

  1. Nice photo. Here I have been watching the Bald Eagle in the tree just on the lot line. Talk about a big bird!

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  2. A bit like a feathered aye-aye!
    Is this a young bird?

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  3. I really envy you watching a bald eagle..... largest raptors around here are buzzards ....

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  4. Hi snippa, yes, I think it's a juvenile. Looks a bit bemused, doesn't it...?

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  5. It is certainly a beautiful bird, amazing talons.

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  6. Perhaps that's him re-incarnated. lol

    Great shot of the mighty hunter.

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  7. Never knew that about the sparrowhawk's toe :-)

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  8. me neither Mel, most bird books don't seem to mention it....

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  9. Ooh!I thought only maths teachers had talons like those!

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