Friday, February 22, 2013

The View from the Quince - Butcherbird

What better perch for the butcherbird, then a roadside copse of flowering quince? 

An abundance of spiny branches, open space aplenty, and bushes high on the bank, the better to spy careless rodents or smaller birds on a late winter morn.

Death visits swiftly when the sharply hooked bill of this vigilant voyeur finds the spine of its hapless prey.  

The thorny branches of the quince secure the prey, while the talon-less, but otherwise raptor-like, shrike tears the flesh with its bill. 

The crimson geyser of early quince blossoms hints at the grisly truth behind this handsome hunter's striking pose. Success in filling winter's larder portends success in filling springtime's nest; another day in nature's struggle for survival...the view from the quince. 

Today's photos courtesy of Jay Randolph.

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