Sunday, December 5, 2010

What a Red-tailed Hawk Eats

I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving. I had a great day at my aunt's house in Sandwich, MA on Cape Cod. I even squeezed in a little impromptu bird-watching, although I wish I had my Canon Powershot with me instead of just my cell phone camera, but what can you do...

This red-tailed hawk eating a Thanksgiving dinner of his own was a nice surprise. We saw it as my mom, Steve and I were heading out for a walk to the beach. We spotted it up in a tree eating what appeared to be a squirrel.


It was pretty gruesome in fact- for a while he was trying to free up a long string of intestines, which you can it pulling on see here,



And you can see it live in this video (I apologize- I can't for the life of me get it to rotate right-side-up. But you can get the picture- you can see it going to town on the intestines):

video

The red-tailed hawk eats squirrels and other mammals like mice, rabbits, and voles. They also prey on ground birds like pheasants and bobwhites, as well as starlings and blackbirds. They'll even go after snakes! Basically they can carry away anything up to 5 lbs.