BIRDS and would doubtless do so, if permitted, in many places, but its singularly handsome ap- pearance causes it to be the subject of the most wanton destruction. It is nearly always slaughtered directly it shows itself, and its history in Surrey consists of a long death-roll (Bucknill y pp. 162-166). III. Cuckoo. Cuculus canorus, Linn. An abundant summer visitor, arriving about mid-April and leaving in early autumn. The meadow-pipit, hedge-sparrow, robin, yellow hammer and pied wagtail are its favourite foster parents in Surrey. 112. White or Barn-Owl. Strix flammed, Linn. A common resident in the rural districts, and is sometimes noticed in suitable places near London. Popularly called the ' screech- owl,' from its hoarse note. 113. Long-eared Owl. Asia otus (Linn.). A scarce resident, frequenting the thickest woods. It is very retiring and seldom noticed, but is to be found in the fir-covered grounds of the wilder portions of the county. Its nest has been recorded occasionally from several different localities. 114. Short-eared Owl. Asia accipitrinus (Pallas). A somewhat rare winter visitor to the county, from which it has been recorded on possibly a score of occasions (Bucknill, p. 171, 172). 115. Tawny Owl. Syrnium aluto (Linn.). A fairly common resident, and in many well-wooded parts of Surrey quite plentiful. 1 1 6. Little Owl. Athene noctua (Scopoli). A doubtful straggler which, although noticed in the county on two or three occa- sions, may quite possibly have never occurred in Surrey in a truly feral state (Bucknill, pp. '73, 174). 117. Marsh-Harrier. Circus <eruginosus (Linn.). Formerly nested in the county, but now a rare visitor. Has been recorded about a dozen times (Bucknill, pp. 175-177). 11 8. Hen-Harrier. Circus cyaneus (Linn.). Doubtless in bygone years a resident on the rough moorlands and boggy heaths but at the present only an occasional visitor of rare occurrence. Noticed in Surrey rather more frequently than the preceding species (Bucknill, pp. 177-179). 211 119. Montagu's Harrier. Circus cineraceus (Montagu). Another now rare visitor, though formerly no doubt of comparatively frequent appear- ance both in and out of the nesting season. Recorded on some twelve occasions (Bucknill, pp. 179, 1 80). 1 2O. Buzzard. Buteo vu/garis, Leach. A resident in former years, but probably not very recently. Still an occasional visitor, soon, with any other big hawk which visits Surrey, slain by the keeper on arrival. Re- corded frequently even in quite recent years (Bucknill, pp. 180-182). 121. Rough-legged Buzzard. Buteo lagopus (Gmelin). A rare winter visitor to this county, in which it has been killed some half a dozen times (Bucknill, pp. 182, 183). [Golden Eagle. Aquila chrysaftus (Linn.). Although recorded as having occurred in Surrey on more than one occasion, the sup- posed examples have turned out to be imma- ture specimens of the succeeding species. An unchallenged specimen is however recorded as having been shot at Godalming in 1810. The account may perhaps require confirma- tion, but is the only golden eagle to which the county can lay claim (Bucknill, p. 183).] 122. White-tailed Eagle. HaliaOtus albicilla (Linn.). An occasional straggler to the county, where it has been noticed six times (Bucknill, pp. 183-185). 123. Goshawk. Astur palumbarius (Linn.). A very rare visitor, recorded on only three or four occasions (Bucknill, p. 1 8 5). 124. Sparrow-Hawk. Accipiter nisus (Linn.). With the kestrel, the only hawk which nests in Surrey regularly. A fairly common resident, but being very rapacious in its depre- dations upon the young of both game birds and poultry does not meet often with a hos- pitable reception and is doubtless decreasing rather rapidly. 125. Kite. Afifvus ictinus, Savigny. A very rare visitor to Surrey, which is singularly badly off for records of this species. Only noticed in the county two or three times (Bucknill, pp. 186, 187). [American Swallow-tailed Kite. Elanoides furcatus (Linn.). Reported to have once been shot at Farn- ham. The evidence is not quite satisfactory (Bucknill, p. 1 8 8).]
Page:VCH Surrey 1.djvu/253
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