As if life isn’t perplexing enough these days, here I was presented with a moral dilemma in my actual back yard! I love the Autumn season and besides the colours it’s the migration of birds that I often find spellbinding. The sound of hundreds of geese flying overhead can reduce me to tears as I rejoice in the wonder of this twice annual marvel.
I’m lucky enough to see a lot of these comings and goings in the parkland out of our back window and never tire of observing who’s visiting.
Great Blue Herons, cormorants and mergansers all mingle with the more common geese and duck species.
For songbirds, I put out seed to help them along their way…and that’s where today’s dilemma began! With the snow driving sideways reminding us of the winter to come, I spied a visitor I hadn’t noticed before. With the wet, cold sleet swirling she looked a little sad for a moment…
But for just a moment and then her expression changed to something a little less pathetic. This Peregrine, whose name means traveler in Latin, noticed my bird feeder and came in for a closer look…
Now I was in fact, thrilled to see her since these magnificent birds of prey were nearly wiped out by DDT – one of the problems with being top of the food chain! They have enough problems in life since 70% of them don’t survive their 1st year because the little ones are favourite food themselves for eagles and owls.
Should I warn those gentle songbirds that they were being considered for lunch? Should I scare her out of the tree or leave well alone? She sat out there for a long time watching… I opted to let nature run it’s course and it seems she was just sheltering from the storm. The songbirds get to live another day.
I found you on Instagram… I am Nance5210. Hope all is well!
Carol i am sorry I missed this post! I think I may have been kayaking in Mexico when it was published. At any rate what a thrill or a dilemma as you point out to have this visitor. I think you were wise in the end to let nature run its course. Great captures by the way!
Lovely to hear from you anytime and given how amazingly busy you are, thanks for dropping by!
As with human culture, in the long-time frame of history, events and trends seem natural without regard to who is effected by them (e.g. the idea of letting nature takes its course with survival). However, when a specific events effects a specific person or group of people, that is tragic (e.g. the song birds at your feeder getting caught and eaten by the raptor).
Beautiful pictures! We have this predicament daily and sometimes feel that I am putting my song birds out there on a silver platter.,
Yikes, silver platter – there’s a thought! The down side of bird feeders…keeps the squirrels happy too…and then my dog who gets territorial with the squirrels- many worlds effected by one simple act😳
Ha ha ha ! You speak the truth!
I think you did the right thing by letter nature work its course. However, I do see your dilemma, but this is the way it’s always been. The Peregrine falcon is quite a special bird.
Falcons are special – such beautifully constructed creatures for the hunters they are. Thanks for the visit.
Good call! I can’t wait to move south to my little wonderland like yours overlooking a creek and having many of the same visitors.
Yes we’re lucky to have access to this little bit of nature. Looking forward to posts when you move – good luck with it all😊
Hooray for nature! Isn’t she a fabulous creature? 🙂
She certainly is – especially when I don’t have to watch the gory parts;-)
Beautiful images Carol, I love the story of the Falcon. Its amazing what happens when one takes time to watch and listen to birds.
Thank you…I too find them fascinating and can see the allure of birdwatching.
Good to see you back, Carol! A beautiful hawk that came to visit you. You made the right decision, leaving the hawk be. All must eat.
All must eat indeed – I’m often impressed by how you ‘share’ your bounty with your wildlife neighbours. I have been away a while but all is good.
This post is very thought-provoking. I don’t think that there is a “right” decision, but I think that I would have done the same thing as you.
Thanks Sheryl – as I get older I’m learning that often it’s best to leave well alone😊
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You have been missed! ♡♡ Such a touching story. Nature is so beautiful but it does have its harsh realities too. Good decision, I have to agree. Lovely photos. It must be such an amazing sight ti see the geese fly over.
Glad to be back. I was very pleased to have a happy ending at my bird feeder though… Some people consider geese a nuisance but I can’t get over their unlikely grace and determination in the air. And when their return announces spring – that’s special!
Good to see you back – and you’ve brought us these wonderful pictures! Thanks.
Thank you GP – I have been gone a while!
I won’t ask why, but I hope all is okay. Have a great weekend and watch out for goblins.
On close inspection the natural world is often overwhelming as Tennyson found – ‘red in tooth and claw’, and at the same time I think many of us find it difficult to reconcile the fact that we, humans, are part of nature’s continuum. Beautiful photos – love the heron too.
Herons are a wonder! Having recently read ‘H is for Hawk’ I was doubly thrilled to see her.
Snow already! Brrrr……. What a beautiful visitor. She obviously didn’t fancy what’s was on the menu this time but no doubt appreciated your hospitality. 😉
Or, it occurs to me, she was resting having had lunch already!
That’s also possible. 😉
I believe you made the right decision, difficult though it is to see little song birds plucked off our seed-feeders by raptors. How exciting to see a peregrine that close up!
I couldn’t believe my eyes when I looked out and spotted her – with her markings she is so well camouflaged!
never have I seen a peregrine falcon up this close. what an amazing sight – thanks for sharing.
It was such a lucky encounter!
I appreciate your dilemma & agree with your decision. I suspect that, almost always, any time we humans decide to interfere, we end up making things worse not better.
We do too often make a mess even when our intentions are good ones. As we steal their habitat though some Peregrines seem to be nesting in Toronto’s towers.
Yup, I think that’s the way it is. Nature has to do what nature has to do. We interfere enough already….. Tough though.
We do interfere far too much and impose our own values where they have no business being!
I’d love to see that in my backyard. But I had to teach a course last Sunday in Calgary for the ATU, and I stole a couple of days hiking in Banff. I’ll send some photos.
Peregine falcons seem to have adapted nicely to nesting in high rises in Toronto too! Hiking in Banff is something I’d love to do one day.