Crested Goshawk hunting squirrel

posted in: Feeding-vertebrates, Raptors | 1

Samson Tan was in Taipei’s Botanical Gardens, arriving at about 9am in April 2009 when he and Ling were greeted by a synchronous cacophony of cries. It was the squirrels’ distress cries, warning of the presence of a predator.

There was a Crested Goshawk (Accipiter trivirgatus) in their midst. Despite the warning calls, the goshawk managed to catch a squirrel from a tree (left). It flew off to another part of the garden with the squirrel tightly held in its talons (below left). There, perching quietly on a branch, it paused for the next 10-15 minutes, cautiously looking around (below right). Only then did it start dealing with its prey.

For the next 7-8 minutes the raptor tore off the fur from the squirrel with its powerful bill, “spitting” out bits and pieces of torn fur. After a further 5 minutes or so, only when the squirrel was devoid of fur did the goshawk start tearing into the carcass to feast on the parts (below).

This post appears courtesy of Samson Tan of Manta’s Experience…”.

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