Red grouse (Lagopus lagopus)RSPB Amber status
Red kites (Milvus milvus)RSPB Amber Status
Red kites are very common around here because of the Argaty Red Kite centre which is about ten miles away. They are very distinctive when in the air because of their huge wingspan and forked tail.
Sparrowhawks (Accipiter nisus )
RSPB Green status
We have only seen the sparrowhawk a few times before, but it is one of my favourites. They are not very common but sometimes you can see them in towns and cities, and one of my neighbours had one which killed a jackdaw in her garden. Their are about 35,000 breeding pairs in the UK and they mainly eat small birds.
The sparrowhawk seems to live in woods on the lower north slopes of the moor. Dad saw this one last year. It had just snatched a crow chick from a nest, and if you look carefully you can see it in its talons.
Stonechat (Saxicola torquata)
I have not seen the stonechat much and it it very fast and small so it is hard to spot. This male was on some heather twitching his tail and singing. nearby, this female (in the next picture) was singing back:
There are 59,000 breeding pairs in the UK and they eat insect, seeds and fruit.
Hen Harriers (Circus cyaneus)
This was the BIG surprise. I have only seen a wild hen harrier once briefly, about a mile to the west of the pine marten wood, so dad only got blurry photos. Even so, you can tell that it is a hen harrier because of the white patch on the tail. Females and juveniles are brown with that white patch and the males are grey.
Pheasants (Phasianus colchicus)
Pheasants are very common near where I liv, where they are bred in there thousands to be shot by shooting partied. Males are extremely colourful with a red face and lovely tail feathers and the females are more drab.
The pheasant enclosures on the moor have been slowly destroyed by storms over recent years, and I don't think there is any shooting which takes place there now.
This sequence of photos is very unusual. It was last year, about a mile east of the wood, and shows two males fighting !
Jays (Garrulus glandarius)
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