The Mighty Hunter

Hunters often return to the same place where they’ve had success before. Roadrunners are skilled hunters. We’ve discussed before Dan True and his movie of a roadrunner killing a rattlesnake. And we’ve shown you one eating a field mouse. Last time we showed you photos of him stalking in a bush in our backyard. As we’ve noted, we’re not sure how Chuck, our Greater Roadrunner, found the back yard and its bird feeders but he did. Yesterday, we didn’t see him in the bush. Neither did the House Finch which you see in today’s photos.

To a Roadrunner, a bird in the beak is worth two in the bush.

Because nature can be pretty raw, we are posting only the thumbnails. To see the photos at normal size, all you need do is click on the thumbnail.

In the first shot, Chuck has already caught the finch and is throwing it to the ground. The finch is probably already dead in this photo.

In this photo, Chuck is plucking his catch. Interestingly, he did not pick off all the feathers, as a falcon or hawk might, just the larger wing feathers.

Raodrunner plucking its kill

In this shot, he has finished plucking. We were wondering at this point whether he would take the finch home to his nestlings or dine on the bird himself.

Finch prepared for dinner

This photo was taken about one second before the finch was down the hatch. This was Chuck’s dinner.
Down the Hatch

Here we have a smug, self-satisfied bird. Note the size of his throat.
Full Crop

After such a fine meal, all the authorities consider it best to have a nice dust bath.

Roadrunner Dust Bath

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We also have photos of Chuck eating a mouse.

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