The buzzard is the most common of Britain's larger birds of prey.

Buzzards and Humans

In the 19th century, buzzards were shot in large numbers by gamekeepers and by the early 1900s they had disappeared from many parts of Britain. However, during the First World War, gamekeepers enlisted to fight and many game estates were abandoned, allowing the buzzard numbers to recover. Since then there has been a more enlightened attitude towards birds of prey and the buzzard has spread back into many of its former haunts.

There was a set-back in 1954, with the introduction of myxomatosis which almost wiped out Britain's rabbit population. Since the rabbit is the buzzard's favourite food, many birds went hungry and the numbers began to decline yet again. Rabbits are common once more and, as a result, the buzzards are on the increase.

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