Pretty pleased with itself!

A few times in recent days I’ve heard the cackling of what I presumed to be a perched raptor quite close to the garden. Finally tracking it down yesterday afternoon, the bird took off from one of the elms on our nature strip – either a Collared Sparrowhawk or Brown Goshawk but I couldn’t be sure.

Rather than pursuing it in the hot sun, I stood and waited as the bird continued to call at a distance. Sure enough, after a short while it reappeared and made a rapid pass as I clicked off a few shots. This time identification was easier. It’s a young Brown Goshawk, possibly a recently fledged bird, celebrating a kill. The unfortunate victim is a small songbird – held in one foot and trailing headless below. There are a few features to note in confirming the identification. The brown barring and spotted pattern underneath indicates a juvenile or immature bird (both species are identical in this regard), while the rounded tail and semblance of a ‘beetle brow’ are typical of the Brown Goshawk. The bird also seems to lack a feature of the Collared Sparrowhawk, an elongated middle toe – look at the leg held against the tail.


Brown Goshawk, Wyndham Street Newstead, 9th January 2016.











6 responses to “Pretty pleased with itself!

  1. Great pic Geoff.

    I saw exactly the same thing on Thursday morning in castlemaine. Interesting.

  2. Your patience paid off Geoff. Great pics and info.

  3. Beautiful sequence Geoff. We saw some an amazing family of sugar gliders taking off between the trees at dusk at Mansfield last week. Would need your camera skills to catch them but it was great to be there to see them – like this beautiful bird. Have a great start to 2016.

  4. An excellent sequence Geoff. I hardly ever manage to take satisfactory photographs of birds in flight and when I do it is more by luck that skill. What camera body/lens combination did you use?

    • Hi Roman – flight photography is always a challenge! This sequence was OK but I forgot that my camera was set on one-shot rather than servo as it would ‘normally’ be for flight shots. I used a Canon 7DII and 100-400MK2 lens for these photos, which is my usual rig for this type of photography. Click here for some more info on gear etc.

      All the best, geoff

  5. Sent from my Sony Xperia™ smartphone on the Telstra™ Mobile network

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