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    « Dad's cool profession | Main | 20 ways grandparents can model a healthy relationship »

    Predator at Grandma's house

    Yesterday as I worked on my computer in the study, I heard a big ol' thwack on the window in the living room.

    I'm fairly used to such sounds, as birds often — for some crazy reason — bang into the windows throughout my house, usually leaving feather-dusted imprints of their wings and more on the glass as proof of their poor navigational skills.

    This time, though, the intensity of the thwack seemed doubled. So I got up to see if a bird had been bonked lifeless and might be dying (or dead) on the ground below the window.

    Sure enough, I saw a baby bird lying spread eagle, face down, just below the window.

    My first thought: Shoot! Now I have to go out in the cold, pick up that bird and throw it in the garbage so the dogs don't get it.

    I then noticed that just beyond the obviously dead bird was a bigger bird, stumbling about as if stunned.

    It was this guy:


    I've no doubt he had been chasing the smaller bird, hoping for an easy feast, when they both banged into my window.

    I watched for a few seconds as the hawk gathered his wits. Then he stood there, staring back at me. He looked from me to the dead bird, back and forth, back and forth.

    I ran to get my camera, quickly returned (he was still there!) and snapped several shots of him.


    Though I was just a few feet from the guy, separated only by glass, the predator seemed unafraid of me and my movements.


    Now, I've seen hawks in our yard several times, but Jim — as much a bird lover as I am — has lamented his lack of hawk sightings. So I quickly put down my camera, ran to get my iPhone, then called Jim at work for a FaceTime chat so he could see the hawk.

    (Yes, such things are important enough to interrupt Jim at work. He agreed without hesitation.)

    When I returned to the window, the hawk was still there, oblivious to my scrambling about.

    Colorado hawk

    I held up the phone to the window. Naturally, Jim couldn't see the hawk very well. (FaceTime needs a zoom function!)


    As I turned the phone about trying to provide a better angle, calling out to Jim to Look right there!, that darn hawk swiftly rose from the ground, swooped over to the dead bird below me, snatched it up in his claws, then soared fast as could be over the fence and off into the wild blue yonder, all in the blink of an eye.

    Gah! The nerve of that thing!

    My first thought: Oh, that poor baby bird.

    My second thought: At least I no longer have to go pick it up and throw it away.

    Such is the nature of nature, I suppose. The predator had served his purpose. (The least of which was serving as blog fodder for today's post.)

    My final thought: Jim has yet to see a hawk in our yard.

    Today's question:

    What wild animal do you wish you could see up close?

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    Reader Comments (13)

    We also have numerous birds attempting a futile flight through glass but never a hawk. We have seen hawks sweep through and pick its own version of lunch from under the bird feeder. It is distressing, but hawks have to eat too. Now our neighbors cat does not get such a pass. He gets fed. So much so, in fact, that he is really no longer a threat to the birds.

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterOlga

    Not sure when I morphed from small town girl into city girl, but I don't want to see any wild animals up close. No safaris for me, no way, no how!

    Nature of nature or not, I know I would've stormed into the yard telling that hawk to go elsewhere to kill baby birds...right after my panic attack. My house, my

    (exception...taming a feral kitten who became the most loyal cat we ever had...I have the scars to prove it)

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNonnieKelly

    I hate seeing the food chain in operation (I know it's out there but I don't want to SEE any of it) so I'd probably have run outside and chased off the hawk. Then, I'd have had to bury the little dead guy. Probably wouldn't have put up any little headstone, like I would have as a kid, but seeing nature in operation would have ruined my day. Good pictures, tho'.

    I love seeing the pretty faces of deer up close when they wander, real close to the house, around here.

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnn

    Wow that is amazing! I have to get outside more often! Love the pictures!

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTerri Sonoda

    I've enjoyed watching birds, bunnies, and a tortoise in my backyard. I was not so amused by the coyote!

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKristi

    Elephants in the wild would top my list, but I get quite excited about seeing moose here in Colorado, and would love to see a wolf. From a safe distance.

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGinger Kay

    We have a cat who behaves like his larger genetic counterpart, a jaguar. One evening the mighty Oscar brought home, into the house, a live hawk. For a bit, my home turned into a version of the Keystone cops as I chased the flying hawk(to try and guide him out of open windows and doors), my two dogs chasing me, the cat chasing us and when the hawk see's the cat, the hawk dives at the cat and the parade turns around. Oh Brother!

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

    I would love to capture any of them with my camera in my yard. The problem is by the time I go get the camera...make the adjustments etc etc...the darn thing is gone!!! Thanks for making me smile.

    I saw a brown bear up close once...too close for my taste. We both looked at each other in aw with only the glass in our door separating us. I don't wish to see any wild animal that close again and I am sure he feels the same about us humans.


    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHolly

    Amazing photos Lisa. Thanks for bringing some of your world into mine.

    I want to see a cheetah. Lucy & I would often watched Big Cat Diary, it was not long before I feel in love with these most beautiful animals. I was able to pause the TV at just the right moment, and take a photo on my cell phone.

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSally Kabak

    He's magnificent!!

    March 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPamela

    Great photos. That new camera is serving you well!

    March 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGrandma Kc

    I'd like to see a Moose. Up in this neck of the country, there are all these signs saying 'watch out for moose.' Well, after many years, I'd like to at least see one but not so close that my car has a close encounter.

    March 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJudy@grandparentsplus2
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