Re: Mobbers being caught.

To: (Stuart Fairbairn)
Subject: Re: Mobbers being caught.
Date: Fri, 12 Jul 96 09:43:01 gmt
Yes, good question. In February of this year I was birding along the Atlantic 
coast of County Clare in Ireland. The area is a wild and desolate place and 
perfect for Peregrine Falcons. Birds of prey always attract mobbers and as we 
watched a pair of Peregrines circling over the coast, the large female drew the 
attention of a Herring Gull and, shortly after, a Jackdaw (which for the 
benefit of non-European birders, is a small crow). The female peregrine 
tolerated this attention for 30 seconds until the herring gull departed, but 
the Jackdaw, alone, continued its pursuit.
As we watched, the peregrine flipped sideways and in a split second grabbed the 
astonished Jackdaw. She carried the struggling bird low over the sea and landed 
on the coast where she stood on the bird for about one minute. She then flew 
off and, just as the Jackdaw was about to do the same, she again hit it, and 
stood on it for a further 10 seconds before departing for good.

The Jackdaw was not killed but certainly stunned! It sat for a long time, 
obviously fearful that any movement on its behalf may attract the peregrine's 
attention. Eventually it struggled away in the opposite direction. It certainly 
looked the worst for wear.

This was the first time in over 20 years of birding that I have seen a mobber 
being taken by a 'mobee'. What amazed me was the fact that the peregrine didn't 
kill the mobber, simply thought it a good lesson!!!

Eric Dempsey
I recently read in Living Bird of a Snowy Owl, roosting on the ground, taking a 
raven that was foolish enough to land close in front of the owl. Has anyone 
seen any mobber being taken by the mobee?

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