3 MAY 1940, Page 18


At or about the same place the harsh, petulant cry of a herring gull was heard overhead ; the bird was seen to be mobbing a buzzard that circled round without paying any attention to its persecutor. The buzzard comes next to the eagles in size ; but its frequent mobbing by other birds, especially in some districts by the ravens, is not justified by the buzzard's habits. About two years ago a large specimen was found badly wounded by shot. It had lost the use of one wing and one eye and one leg. It was picked up, put in a spacious cage, and though still quite incapable of flight it looked to rue contented and fit enough. It refused all food other than rabbits. This prejudice is good evidence of the feeding habit of the species. Rabbits are its standard food ; and the only enemy of the species that has any reason for objecting to the buzzard is the professional rabbit-snarer.