21
Feb
15

Sometimes Things Are Not What They Appear

[edit] Obviously (thoughtlessly) misidentified – it’s an Eurasian Sparrowhawk / Sperber. [/edit]When I got up this morning at dawn, I saw a blob (yes, that’s a technical term when one is not wearing one’s glasses) on the rooftop – turned out to be one of the kestrels. And while I was making coffee, the kestrel htought about breakfast, too, and launched an attack on my window sill. The tits got away and the kestrel returned to its perch.

About an hour later there were loud noises that sounded like a bird call, but none I ever heard before. Instant excitement! For a moment I really thought I’d get a new bird for my yard list. Until i saw this:

Sometimes Things Are Not What They Appear
Click for a bigger version.

The noises I heard were the blackbird in distress – the kestrel had started to pluck feathers while its prey was still alive. I’m usually quite pragmatic when it comes to predators and their prey and we even jokingly refer to our tits as kestrel food. But the time it took for the blackbird to die, I admit, my hands were shaking while taking photos. Still, a kestrel has to eat, too.

February 2015, Common Kestrel / Turmfalke, Common Blackbird / Amsel, Ahlen

[edit] Obviously (thoughtlessly) misidentified – it’s an Eurasian Sparrowhawk / Sperber. [/edit]

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2 Responses to “Sometimes Things Are Not What They Appear”


  1. 21. February 2015 at 21:06

    Dramatic morning for you! Yes it seems cruel but you’re right, the kestrel needs to eat too..

  2. 21. February 2015 at 22:37

    I guess it was more dramatic for the blackbird. 😉 At least tiny bird brains are’t good at remembering, the tits and one of the male blackbirds came back to enjoy the sunflower seeds and oats.


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