Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Kill.


This is the sight that greeted us when we stepped outside the back door this morning. Quite a grisly find but the question is what did it?

Surely it either has to be a sparrow hawk swooping low over the hedge or one of our farm cats. Whichever it is, it seems to have happened quite late in the evening and either the bird (collared dove??) has been plucked and carried away or eaten on site down to the very last piece of bone and sinew because there is absolutely no sign of anything more than one wing joint.

We neither saw nor heard anything but I do wish that whatever did the dirty deed had cleared up after himself. (It is almost certainly a 'he' because no female would have left such a mess, would she?)

14 comments:

The Solitary Walker said...

Now, Pat, don't be sexist! Dominic & I were extremely clean and tidy and wahsed up lots during our recent hiking jaunt/culinary extravaganza (see my latest post).

Heather said...

I think 'she' should have swept up the remaining feathers! We find similar remains sometimes on our lawn or on the footpath by the house and have assumed it is down to cats. There must dozens of cats in the houses surrounding ours but I have only even seen one sparrow hawk.

Elizabeth said...

Loved yesterday's walk --so today is a 'reality check'!
Nature --red in tooth and claw!

Gwil W said...

Somebody was hungry.

angryparsnip said...

I just found something like that outside my gate yesterday. I think the bird hit the window and is now just a ghost of it former self. I will bury him later today.

cheers, parsnip

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

You will not thank me for drawing your attention to the following from the RSPB website:
"(Sparrowhawks eat) mainly small birds, but 120 different species have been recorded. Males can catch birds up to thrush size, but females, being bigger, can catch birds up to pigeon size."
Sorry!

Em Parkinson said...

At least there was no gore. Not really enough to stuff a cushion though. I thought about roasting the dead mole we found outside the door last week but then thought better of it....

Titus said...

I think a cat. I like sparrowhawks.

Pam said...

Thank goodness you didn't find something half-alive and suffering - I'm not much good with that situation.

ArcticFox said...

looks like the local kids have shoved a firework up a pigeon where monkeys shove bad nuts!!

Crafty Green Poet said...

If it's a collared dove it's very likely to have been killed by a male sparrowhawk. The females go for smaller prey than the males and a collared dove may well be too large for them. I don't think the females are any better at cleaning up after themselves though!

ArtPropelled said...

Lol.... it must have been a Tom cat!

The Weaver of Grass said...

There is a strong wind blowing today and the feathers are now all over the yard but as there is also straw everywhere I think I shall just leave it all to blow away. Thanks for visiting.

Crafty Green Poet said...

oops Weaver, you're right (comment on my blog), the female is larger, as in most birds of prey. So she's likely to be taking larger birds. Actually though seeing as I've not either done or read any serious research into exact prey size for males and females she may still be more likely to take a collared dove than the male, it may be that he prefers feral pigeons.