Buzzards over Cambridge

I was walking along Parkers Terrace this morning and the house sparrows which are always in a very chirpy mood, seemed to be quite agitated. Then right above us 3 buzzards circled slowly going round and round surveying the ground below. I immediately rushed up to my office and grabbed my camera and climbed onto the roof of the shop.  Just in time to get a series of images before they moved away altogether.

The little images show how variable  these same birds of prey can look when flying.  All were taken within a few seconds of each other. It takes a practiced eye to identify them correctly all the time.

Buzzards are showing a big increase in numbers from the low point in the 1960s. But they started to increase in numbers from about 1990 and the present population is 6 times that of 1967. This is probably due to more rabbits being resistant to Myxomatosis, fewer organochlorine pesticides, and less persecution.  They are breeding in lots of the woodland in the countryside around Cambridge, but its not often you see them right over the city.

27 October 2017

Duncan Mackay