[CT Birds] Hawks as predators....
carriergraphics at sbcglobal.net
Mon Jan 4 22:18:10 EST 2010
Hi Weather wizard -
My son is a meteorologist, are you one also?
Yes, they do notice our concentration of food (other birds) at our feeders. They also notice other bird (prey) concentrations in wild areas as well. That's how they survive. BUT........
The best we can do is - make our visitors as safe as we can. Most ground feeding or feeder birds do not like to expose themselves much distance from cover. So try to place cover as near as you can from your feeders. I have several brush piles near the feeders where many birds can reach if danger appears.
One benefit many birds feeding together have is, more eyes for seeing danger, and it does work. However; The unfortunate weak, injured or just dumb bird will often be the one taken by a predator. It is this way at our feeders as well as in the wild.
Unfortunately for the unfortunate, they must and are culled out of the healthy crowd for the hawks, as well as the general populations welfare. If it makes us feel better, the odds of a healthy, smart bird getting caught by a predator is relatively slim. The spoils go to the predator that can find and detect the weakest prey. If and when they do not learn how to do this - they then become the prey, for even a weak, or un learned hawk will eventually become prey to others, or often die of starvation. I believe that up to 50% or more of Immature Hawks will not make it to their second year.
So the best we can do for feeder birds is - provide good close cover for the healthy birds to utilize, and with that we are doing the best we can to protect our winter visitors..........good luck.
Paul Carrier - Harwinton
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