January 7, 2022
Warning to the sensitive: Mother Nature in a gory mood
Early this morning, on the grass at the curb, I saw a red-shouldered hawk crouched over its freshly killed prey. By the evidence of the feather-pile, the prey was a white-winged dove. For the hawk, breakfast. For me, no tragedy.
Re this rather strange-looking crouching: As a hawk tears into its victim, it tries to hide the process with dome-like spread of tail and wings. This shielding of the meal is the hawk’s version of a private dining room.
As soon as the hawk spied me, it gave me a fierce ‘you’re not getting this’ look, and carried the carcass to a yard across the street. As it re-domed and resumed its meal, it gave me a grim-jawed nasty glare. Later I told this tale to my husband, who asserted that hawks don’t have expressions. Just beaks, and eyes, which are permanently set. However, I know what I know.
Hawk to Phoebe: “Read my lips. Stand back. Oh wait, I don’t have lips…”