Today, as I was walking down the street with my husband, I saw a kestrel pinning down a pigeon. The pigeon seemed to be dead at first. The poor thing had a bloodied beak. As much as I don’t like to interfere with nature, I knew I couldn’t stand by and watch assault and murder in the animal world. My husband crossed the street to chase the kestrel but a man on a bike was passing and did the job for us. The pigeon soared into the air and appeared to get away. I hope the kestrel didn’t go after it again and that the pigeon can recover. Nature is cruel and the kestrel will get its dinner somewhere else. It was staring at me, while struggling to hold this pigeon down on its back, as if to say, ‘He’s mine, all mine, don’t interfere!’ I don’t know why I was shocked. I think it’s because I didn’t think they would go after pigeons, I thought they ate mice and things like that. While I know it’s what kestrels and their ilk do, I just can’t stomach predatory behaviour, whether it’s from animals or humans. Animals aren’t supposed to be evil or have a moral compass. I know they kill to survive and they have babies to bring up just like everyone else but give me a rabbit eating a carrot any day.
I’ve lived with birds for thirty years. Right now, I live with two adorable cockatiels, but know nothing about birds of prey. Having just done some rudimentary research, I think it may have been a sparrowhawk and not a kestrel. I’ve heard sparrow hawks are more city orientated and will take on anything and this one was a little smaller, (certainly slimmer) than the pigeon it was going for and struggling to keep pinned down. There was something very human like in the way that it was pinning down this other bird, very rape like. I know it’s a fact of life and I shouldn’t get so upset but still, it was a very ugly, disturbing sight. It’s not something I see every day and I’m really glad about that. Flying rats are people too.