Friday, June 2, 2023

How the tables have turned

We have hordes of magpies around here.

This time of year, fledgings are everywhere, noisily demanding food from the parent birds. The parents will take food wherever they can find it. They're omnivorous and won't hesitate to raid the nests of other birds (such as robins) to feed their own offspring. There's a feeling of helplessness to stand on the ground and watch magpies raid a robin's nest high up in a tree and not be able to do anything about it.

Yesterday a bunch of very noisy magpie fledglings were raising a ruckus in a tree by the house. At first I didn't pay much attention because it just seemed like the normal raucous sounds magpies make.

But the cries of the birds seemed more strident than normal. I finally grabbed the camera and went outside. And what did I see?

I saw a hawk fly from one tree to another, a fledgling magpie in its talons.

The parent birds swarmed around the hawk, but I'm sure the baby was dead by then. It happened so fast I couldn't get photos of the hawk.

My, how the tables have turned. It's not often the magpies get raided. Usually they're the raiders.

Nature red in tooth and claw.


  1. UGGH!!! MAGPIES!!! When I was stationed in Kodiak, AK while in the Coast Guard, these things would dig cockle clams out of the mud at low tide, carry them up into the air, and drop them onto the parking lot... and any cars parked there, to break them open!!! Nothing could be done about them because the Aleuts believe Magpies and ravens are reincarnated ancestors... ...Those oldsters OBVIOUSLY enjoyed denting cars and cracking windshields!!!

  2. I really hate the " circle of life " stuff. Whether it's the magpies getting their due, or the varmints that attacked my chickens a few days ago, or the fact that if I don't eat meat frequently, I lose strength. Killing just isn't supposed to be part of life. Can't hardly wait for death to be destroyed. Life isn't meant to be a circle. It's meant to be eternal.

  3. "Nothing you can do"?
    You can shoot 'em.
    Even with a pellet gun if noise is a concern.
    I have to kill the starlings that raid the bluebird nest.