Buzzards

easker1

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read a piece on Raptors on The Net, it seems every one has a down on raptors from Sea Eagles to Peregrines , on Member of the Game Keepers Ass. estimated there were 300,000 Buzzards in the UKI would like to know where he sees them, we saw one on the way from Dingwall today, any other views on this, easker1
 

JohnH

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Buzzards are now commonplace in Wessex. When I was little (late 1950s) we only used to see them on family holidays in North Devon, but they can now be seen at least as far to the east of that as Basingstoke. I'm also seeing increasing numbers of kites around here, almost certainly spreading out from successful re-introductions in the Chilterns about 30 years ago. This is quite a big game shooting area, so roadkill and (sadly inevitable) lost wounded birds suit a carrion feeder just fine.
 

4wings

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Buzzards need big territories, we have 2-3 pairs that we can see and hear from our house. It gets interesting when they are mobbed by crows and gulls
 

4wings

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Buzzards need big territories, we have 2-3 pairs that we can see and hear from our house. It gets interesting when they are mobbed by crows and gulls.
Coming from Lifton Down, to join the M5 I rounded a bend and braked hard as a Buzzard took off from the road in front of me, it lifted with huge sweeps of its wings its eyes on me all the while and was away.
Arriving back in Bristol I noticed the bonnet bore the imprints of the birds wing tips and tail feathers!
 

glueman

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on the banks of the A5
read a piece on Raptors on The Net, it seems every one has a down on raptors from Sea Eagles to Peregrines , on Member of the Game Keepers Ass. estimated there were 300,000 Buzzards in the UKI would like to know where he sees them, we saw one on the way from Dingwall today, any other views on this, easker1
10 a penny in the midlands
 

jaybeegee

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I see buzzards often now in Wharfedale and Nidderdale, they were a very rare sight even twenty years ago. We have loads of red kites now, even in urban areas.

B
 

haggstock

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Halifax
I see them over Shibden Valley, West Yorks, ( Gentleman Jack territory) often . They had a young one last year . It’s interesting seeing the crows mob them , even though they are much bigger than crows , they are quite fragile so won’t mix it with the tough corvids. They were daily visitors in 2019 when RHD was finishing off the bunnies in volume and there were easy pickings . Rabbits are rare this year and the buzzards haven’t been seen as regularly .

Up on the Syndicate shoot in North Yorks , they are a regular fixture , but they would be wouldn’t they ? Much protein being available in the shape of poults and later on unpicked birds .

Red kites are a regularly seen between Harewood and Harrogate , that was the area of a release of birds brought in from Spain some years back .
 

PaulD

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Buzzards have become less common here in South Northants over the past 10 to 15 years. They're still here, but not in the same numbers as previously. However, the Red Kite population has 'exploded' over the same period. 10 to 15 years ago it was a notable occasion to spot a Kite but today, they're common place, drive down the road, two or three miles you'll see six, I look out of the window while tying flies and two or three will be circling over the copse opposite. Friends locally who run a chicken 'farm' dread this time of year when the bare trees reveal the remains of chicken corpses in the trees!
 

codyarrow

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Fairly common in Caithness. Numbers seem to be in relationship to roadkill rabbits. The rabbit population crashed here several years back and has not recovered, buzzard numbers have dropped, but still a good population. Only ever saw a buzzard catch a live rabbit once - sitting on a post not hunting, rabbit came out of hole, buzzard plopped one yard onto rabbit.
 

easker1

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we used to have plenty in the west , but not now, but do you think 300,000 UK wide, at that rate they should be as common as crows? I find it weird that we persecute the Native birds to preserve the Himalayan Pheasant, another bit in the Paper today , 5 years study have found that HenHarriers diet is only5.6% Grouse chicks? easker1
 

BobP

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No gamekeeper down here is going to kill either a buzzard or a kite. Not worth the risk. If caught, apart from the fine he would lose his shotgun and firearms certificates and without those he's not much use as a keeper. Ergo, no job.

I know two keepers who regularly put out damaged game that the game dealer doesn't want for the kites and buzzards to polish off, and i doubt they are the only ones doing that. It is a very good way of disposing of unwanted carcases rather than burying them.
 

4wings

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I see buzzards often now in Wharfedale and Nidderdale, they were a very rare sight even twenty years ago. We have loads of red kites now, even in urban areas.

B
I have only seen one kite, Forest Ffields in Wales, the Lioness sees them all the time ( 'cause she does not have to drive)
 

BobP

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Actually I regard kites and buzzards as the picker up's friend, especially on partridge drives. Partridges can sometimes fly quite a long way after being hit. 3-400 yards is not unusual. It is possible to spot those in the air with practice as there is something a bit off about the way they fly, and then the tank runs empty and they drop. If seen they are easy to get with a team of dogs, but often we don't see them.

What gives it away is a kite or buzzard circling above the place where the bird dropped and even if I hadn't seen the partridge hit or drop out of the sky, that kite or buzzard is as good as a signpost and is well worth investigating. I often feel sorry for stealing the raptor's lunch, but at £42 a bird inc. VAT they have to take their turn! Those partridges are very lightly shot, often only one pellet and will be taken by the game dealer.
 

PaulD

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I have only seen one kite, Forest Ffields in Wales, . . . .

About 20 years ago, my wife and I were on holiday in Wales, wanting to see a Kite we went to the feeding station at Gigrin Farm, near Rhayader . . . fabulous to see the birds wheeling in the air, taking the provided food off the ground.

Now, if one of our cats leaves a deceased mouse on the lawn it's quickly collected by Mr or Mrs Kite. There's a field used for lambing next to our house and in the Spring they're quickly on site to 'tidy up' any birthing over-spill. I love them, they are fabulous birds. In our village school, one class's name is the Red Kites. A visiting artist at the school created a lovely Kite Mosaic that hangs in our reception. Doing playground duty at school there'd be Kites wheeling over the playground . . . clearly waiting for a Reception child to expire . . .
 

mrnotherone

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Monmouthshire
About 20 years ago, my wife and I were on holiday in Wales, wanting to see a Kite we went to the feeding station at Gigrin Farm, near Rhayader . . . fabulous to see the birds wheeling in the air, taking the provided food off the ground.
At the end of the season I made a very rare departure from the rivers and fished a remote llyn. I spent 15 minutes watching a single kite playing on a thermal. Wonderful.
 

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