Hawkwatch Home

Welcome to the Edinburgh Hawkwatch web site. Many birds of prey in Scotland are undergoing population recoveries in the countryside after a legacy of persecution and habitat loss and some of these populations are starting to colonise our cities. However, the populations of some species are still suffering from habitat loss and illegal persecution. The Kestrel is declining for reasons which are still unclear. This web site presents the latest information on birds of prey in Edinburgh and provides an opportunity for you to submit your records and information about the birds of prey you encounter in Scotland’s capital city. If you have any information about birds of prey in Edinburgh please submit your sightings to the Edinburgh Hawkwatch on-line recording system. Any sensitive breeding records can be submitted to hawkwatch@cjlonline.org.

The Birds of Prey in Edinburgh depend on our urban green spaces such as parks, gardens and golf courses. By tracking the populations of these species we can gain a lot of information about the state of our urban biodiversity from which we all benefit!

All the birds of prey listed on this web site may be encountered in and around Edinburgh. More information about these species can be found by clicking on the pictures below.

Sparrowhawk female - Photo copyright laurie@lauriecampbell.com
Kestrel female - Photo copyright laurie@lauriecampbell.com
Peregrine - Photo copyright laurie@lauriecampbell.com
Buzzard - Photo copyright laurie@lauriecampbell.com
Tawny owl - Photo copyright laurie@lauriecampbell.com
Tawny owl
Barn owl - Photo copyright laurie@lauriecampbell.com
Barn owl


Common birds of prey in flight: 1: Kestrel hovering - only kestrels hover for any length of time; 2: Kestrel gliding - note slender, pointed wings, long tail and slender body; 3: Peregrine - note heavier body, stouter wings and slightly shorter tail than kestrel; 4: Buzzard - large bird with short rounded tail and broad wings, usually with 'fingers' of primary feathers; 5: Sparrowhawk - much smaller than buzzard with short, rounded wings and conspicuously long tail.