email: cavebear2118 AT verizon DOT com

Tuesday, February 16, 2016


WARNING, bird guts.  But not from cats...

There is a hawk around here lately.  I noticed it first a couple weeks ago.  It flew through the back yard catching nothing. 

Then last week, I happened to walk out onto the deck just as the hawk was going for a dove.  The hawk panicked and flew off.  The dove it was chasing panicked and crashed into the side of the house (flew away unharmed).

Yesterday morning, as the snow was falling, I looked out the bathroom window to see the finches at the thistle feeder and the other birds at the sunflower seed feeder.  None!  Huh...

Then right below the window, the hawk lifted off with some (ahem) mangled bird in its talons.  Well, that was sort of exciting; not something I've seen out the window before.

It took a few minutes to find out what happened (snow-blindness after just waking up from total bedroom darkness).  Then I found the spot.

It was some blackbird from the feathers.
The hawk apparently felt safe enough a few feet from the house!
And ate happily.
The other birds stayed away for 15 minutes.
I don't blame them.  But the lure of the feeders is strong.
They returned.  They have to.  Too much food.

I suspect that few birds live as long as they could.  They have many predators.  Hawks, weasels, snakes...  Cats too, but I doubt that cats kill as many as the other bird predators.  Hawks need a few birds every day.  So do weasels.  Snakes get some, but perhaps more eggs than adult birds.

So keep the cats from killing birds and it probably won't make much difference.  Fewer cats killing birds, more weasels and hawks.

But seeing that hawk fly off with the remains of the bird is caught WAS very impressive.

You never have a camera ready when the really SURPRIZE things happen!


Just Ducky said...

Wow, we have seen that here too. Mum even has pictures of a hawk getting a dove years ago. She often finds piles of fevvers in the yard where someone had lunch.

Megan said...

Drat about the camera! At least you've recorded the story for posterity, even if the actual event was captured in pics.

Sydney, Australia