Collared Sparrowhawk

The Collared Sparrowhawk (Accipiter cirrhocephalus) is best identified by its size and style of flight - it is smaller and finer than the goshawk, and has a faster, flicking and more flexible flight in taking prey with lighting speed in the air (up to rosella and teal size). Hence it is much feared by local bird populations and the cause of noisy and panic behaviour by all! It is also recognised by its shorter and squarer cut tail in flight compared to the goshawk. The female sparrowhawk is considerably larger and more powerful than the male.

The collared sparrowhawk feeds mostly on smaller birds, small mammals and reptiles. It breeds from August to December, with a shallow platform nest of small sticks line with eucalyptus leaves, 10m to 30m high in a living tree or occasionally in an old crow's nest. There are 2 to 4 eggs.

The collared sparrowhawk is widespread in Australia and Tasmania but uncommon. It is usually seen singly or in pairs. (Contributed by Jo G.)