Friday, May 10, 2013

Hurt hawks

I am drawn to hawks. A sighting makes my day. So when crows mob a hawk, and crows hereabouts are never far behind a hawk, I sympathize with the raptor. What do crows have against hawks?

Perhaps the scene reminds me of old playground dramas of insiders ganging up on one or two of us outsiders.

The other day, in a breezeway amid the athletic buildings on campus, I heard the familiar “scree” of a red-tailed hawk, looked up, saw one. And then another. A mating pair perhaps, or courting.

Then a swoop of crows. And my heart hardened – until I saw one of the hawks lift off the roof with a baby crow in its talons.

Suddenly I understood why crows are so murderous of hawks.

Even so, my sympathy for the crow family hardly diminished my admiration for the hawks and their “... old implacable arrogance.”

They are a kind of royalty, and even as we despise kings, we do look on them with envy and pride.

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