& 24 September 2000
I originally identified it as a Kestrel, but I now think this is wrong. My second choice was a Sparrowhawk, but it was too large, even making allowances for its close distance, it was at least the size of the birds used in falconry. I am still unsure of the identity of this raptor.
On 8 October 2000, a film sketch of a Buzzard was shown on television and it a lot of respects, especially the size and the flight pattern, this bird was similar.
Two and a half years later, I am having doubts that I put the correct dates on the report. The dates of 21 & 23 September 2002 seem more likely. I am still not sure of the identification. Both birds were the same with certain characteristics of a Peregrine in both birds. With more close-ups and experience, I should be able to discern the species one day (one that got away for now).
However, the identity as a Sparrowhawk was confirmed by other reports from Gordon Road (thanks to Paul from the Post Office), near Shoreham Railway Station, and from Larkfield Paddocks, a half-mile from Widewater.
After watching a what I thought was a juvenile Kestrel at close quarters, I have still got doubts about the identity of these birds. It assumes the identification in Gordon Road is correct, which I am no longer certain of. After this recent observation at the same distance, the bird of prey at Widewater and in the Shoreham town was almost twice the size, and this could just indicate the female.
New Report of small Raptor
Sussex Bird Records