|Photo: Mark Hancox|
The other predator seen over Hilly Fields is the Kestrel. Sue recalls watching them nest and breed in the school building back in the 1980s (before it became Prendergast), but they are not quite so common around the park now. Only one sighting in 2012 as far as I know. The Kestrel is famous for hovering in one spot, almost standing still in mid-air while it searches the ground for prey. It does take small birds and chicks, but mice and voles are preferred. Keith (again) stumbled across one back in 2008 tearing apart what was probably a mouse at the edge of the meadow and got this photo of it standing over its prey.
So there we are - it's a bird-eat-bird world out there, sometimes. But at least their food chain gives birds of prey one big advantage over us. They always know what they're eating.