Picture that before you is an acerage of about 80 acres of pasture land with 3 ponds, covered with 500 or 600 Canada Geese and further away behind the geese, a string of Sandhill cranes strung out in a long line in basically 3 groups. Now with this in mind this pasture is right on the west side of the highway and just north of this location and abutting to it is a sideroad that travels east from this highway.....along this sideroad are numerous dead trees on which perches this wonderful predator. Although it may be rather hard to authenticate this, i believe that the activities of the large number of Canadas combined with the stately struting/feeding behaviour of the Sandhill cranes that go about their business of finding food and the ebulliant and loud croaking sounds of their social lives and behaviours lead to disturbing the mice and voles which cause them to break cover in their proximity. This is to the chief delight of this wonderful "Bird of Prey" and makes his job of finding breakfast easy and gives him a day of feasting.
In these 8 photos you may see that when a bird of prey dives in long grasses or into brush or dead branches, it very often protects those most essentials of surveillance and distant vision, the eye. Here we have a shot of this protective chitinous second eyelid, an adaption of nature to protect this great birds major tool in hunting.
Also it became very apparent to me that as soon as i turned and proceeded in his direction his head swiveled and locked onto me.
These behaviors are exactly what i expected from this magnificent bird!
Categories & Keywords
Keywords:Bird of Prey, Buteo, Red-Tailed Hawk, predator