Rufous-breasted Sparrowhawks sightings

There is a good variety of bird species to be seen on Rondebosch Common. A firm favourite amongst visiting birders might well be the recent arrival of Rufous-breasted sparrowhawks (Accipiter rufiventris).

Also known as the rufous-chested sparrowhawk, this dark grey raptor with its distinctive rufous chest only measures about 30cm with a wingspan of 72cm. They probably enjoy the Common due to the abundance of rodents and reptiles found on the Common.

In September 2020, a pair set up a nest in the tall pines on the Rustenberg Girls' High School side of the Common and succesfully raised two male chicks. The fledglings left the nest in late January and were not seen for a short period of time.

The pair returned in 2021 and again raised 2 chicks. The success of the 2022 breeding season is uncertain but it was probably unsucessful. 

A pair of sparrowhawk have been seen returning to the pine trees during May & June. We do hope that they will again build a nest and breed here.