It was about 8 AM and I just had my first cup of coffee and the newspaper in front of me. All of a sudden I caught a glimpse of a big shape moving in the garden from the corner of my eye. I looked up and my jaw dropped to the floor. A Honey Buzzard!! This big bird-of-prey is migratory bird that only spends a few months a year in Holland. I had only seen two before in my entire life (twice in the same week last year).
And here it was some 5 meters away from the terrace, completely at ease on a branch of the apple tree in the garden! Of course it may have helped that our 4 dogs were still sound asleep, as was my husband. My camera was on the table so I took a dive to the floor, grabbed the camera Lara Croft style, slithered over the floor to a window where I would have the clearest view and started shooting straight through the window as I knew that there was no way that it would stay when I would open the sliding doors to the terrace.
It looked around, not in the least disturbed by the alarmed blackbirds that tried to scare it away. It hopped from the apple tree to the walnut tree and continued checking the surroundings for wasps’ nests – its main food. I kept shooting from the floor up, with one arm fencing off the dogs that had meanwhile woken up and came to see why I was acting so strangely. Hans had woken up too and wanted to enter the living room but was stopped by my frantically hissed “stay there!!” He didn’t dare to move a muscle 🙂
When it finally flew off I couldn’t believe what had just happened. Honey Buzzard! Right here in my own garden!! The good thing is that now I know the sound I hear it every day. And the biggest surprise is that yesterday we saw it flying around, accompanied by a second one!! So please, keep your fingers crossed that it will nest somewhere close and raise lots of new honey buzzard babies!