‘Bertie, Bertie, come quick’, my brother shouted to inform that there was an enormous bright orange butterfly in his room. After appreciating its beautiful wing patterns and intricate body structure we decided that we should let it go; I cupped it in my hands and walked down stairs to the front door. Once outside, I opened my hands and it flew up into the air and away. My brother and I watched it climb higher and higher until it brought our attention to something a bit larger in the sky. Directly above us, no more than chimney height, a Red Kite was gliding with something in its talons. At the sight of this amazing bird so close, I told my brother to keep watching as I sprinted into the house to fetch my telephoto lens. To my horror, the wide angle was on the body!
That was a fast lens change.
By the time I had got outside, the Red Kite had drifted away but it was still clearly in view. I raised the viewfinder to my eye to discover that the Kite was raising its talons to its beak and taking chunks out of what it was holding.
That was the point at which I burst out laughing.
In this formidable predators talons, was my puppy’s fluorescent pink toy bone! Moments before we came out to release the butterfly, the Kite must have swooped down and taken it off my patio thinking it was a real bone. I have never witnessed behaviour like this before, and I doubt I will ever again, if anyone has seen this before I’d love to know…
Shortly after taking this photograph, the Kite dropped the bone into the next door neighbours garden. It took photographic evidence to convince the neighbours that the bone’s transport between our garden and theirs involved a bird of prey!
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