Sunday, May 4, 2014

Pigeon nightmare

I like to think that hawks are Nature's perfect killing machines, swiftly catching their prey and putting the victim out of its misery before it even knows what hit them.  But, hawks are not perfect and they do make mistakes.

Today I saw Christo masterfully catch a pigeon out of the air, only to watch in horror as he failed to quickly kill it.  He apparently had the pigeon by the foot and was unable to get a better grip, so he flew it to a tree and waited while it flapped around, trying in vain to escape.

Christo vs pigeon

Christo vs pigeon

Christo vs pigeon

The struggle went on for at least ten minutes and, for a moment, it looked like the pigeon was going to make it...

Christo vs pigeon

That didn't happen.  However, I have seen pigeons get away before.

Here, the pigeon looks resigned to its fate.

Christo vs pigeon

I actually had a difficult time going through my photos as many are too disturbing.  I like pigeons - to me, they are innocents - so it's hard to watch one put up such a long fight and suffer.

Christo eats a pigeon

Christo experienced a little suffering of his own when one of the neighborhood bully blue jays showed up to torment him while he ate.

Christo eats a pigeon while a blue jay looks on

I can't end this on a bad note, so here's a pigeon in happier times...

East River Park

See more hawk photos here and here.

Previous hawk posts.