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Keith Dotson | Catching Shadows

THE OFFICIAL BLOG OF FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHER KEITH DOTSON

I Saw a Hawk Catch a Squirrel Today

I Saw a Hawk Catch a Squirrel Today

The thing that caught my attention was the flash of white tail feathers raised up, and a scattering of frantic squirrels running in every direction around the base of a huge, moss-coated tree. Before I knew what was happening, the hawk was in the air with a tidy, round bundle held close in his talons.

He landed in an open field about 50 yards away, holding the squirrel to the ground, wings arched over like a shield, looking at me and in every direction, to gauge if this might be a safe place to kill or maybe consume his prey. This is the first time I’ve ever actually witnessed this kind of natural violence. It was amazing how efficiently he took the squirrel, how determined he was to protect it from loss. It was simultaneously beautiful and terrifying.

“He was a killer, a thing that preyed, living on the things that lived, unaided, alone, by virtue of his own strength and prowess, surviving triumphantly in a hostile environment where only the strong survive.”
― Jack London, The Call of the Wild

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