Cowart's Common Room
Sympathy and advice needed

The bl**dy ****ing hawk has killed my daddy dove, Glory.

The eggs hatched this week and I was going to blog about it. This morning I got up at 7.30 as usual to feed the doves - then I went back to bed for a while as its Sunday.

Came out just now - opened the door for the dog, and feathers everywhere all over the step, and there just in front of the coal bunker - the dead body.

I rushed down to the dovecote - and thank God a dove on the nest - and then rushed back - please don't let it be Glory. His poor little body was still warm and covered in blood, but on inspection I could found the pink food colouring marks I had sprinkled on him so I'd know him.

I am so devastated - why oh why does it never go right for me with the doves in the dove cote?

And what I want to know is, do you think Hope will be able to manage and rear the chicks on her own?

FaithCrying or Very sadCrying or Very sadCrying or Very sad

Oh and do you think I should leave the dead body for her to see? Oh God it's so awful!

Posted at 22nd Mar 2009 - 09:01AM   Posted by Faith   Sympathy and advice needed Comments: 14

Tiggywinkle's Avatar Faith, what a terrible thing to happen. I can imagine how upset you are. Nature can be so cruel and unfair at times. I can't offer any advice, but I imagine Glory would have been busy supplying food to Mummy and the squabs. Could you ring someone for advice? I know how excited you were about their arrival. I'm sorry I can't be of more help. Keep your little chin up. Tiggy xxx

Posted by: Tiggywinkle on 22nd Mar 2009 at 09:19AM

Toady's Avatar So sorry Faith, I know how fond you are of your birdies.
I have no idea about advice but I wouldn't leave the body for her to see. I don't see how you can discourage the hawks without discouraging all the other birds. I've seen sort of black cut out hawks that you're supposed to suspend but they would put off the doves as well.

Posted by: Toady on 22nd Mar 2009 at 09:57AM

ChrisH's Avatar Faith, you poor soul. I've no idea what to say about what you should do, but I'm sorry for your loss.

Posted by: ChrisH on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:00AM

Sumarell's Avatar I'm so sorry Faith. How very distressing and awful. I also don't know what to suggest, but I'm thinking of you.

Posted by: Sumarell on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:14AM

Withy Brook's Avatar So awful for you, you poor thing. I am afraid that Nature is "red in tooth and claw" but why did the hawk not take the body away? Are you sure it was the hawk and not a cat or something? The hawk would be killing for food wouldn't it?
My own instinct would be to leave the corpse as being what would happen for a short time in the wild. I wonder what Patsie would advise?

Posted by: Withy Brook on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:18AM

Arosebyanyothername's Avatar I cannot offer any advice but you certainly get my sympathy - I can only imagine how you must feel. I suspect a cat too - did you actually see the hawk? But hugs to you and purple vibes.

Posted by: Arosebyanyothername on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:35AM

Faith, how distressing, I am so sorry for this loss you are suffering. And what to do? I am inclined to agree with Withy on this, it is highly unlikely to be the hawk, for in my experience they only kill for food and the body would not be left like that. A cat is another matter entirely. Having found many bodies of birds around my home last year, I began to research this and time and again the same answer kept coming up: we have domesticated cats to the point where they still have the killer instinct but no longer know what to do with the kill once it is dead (because we feed them out of tins and packets).

As to whether or not you should leave the body, I don't know what to suggest. Is it a necessary part of the grieving process for birds to see the body and make the connection as to why thier partner is no longer there to support them? I know this is the case with some, but know nothing of doves.

Purple Vibes to you today, Faith, and to your little family. xx

Posted by: Celtic Heart on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:39AM

Camilla's Avatar Dear Faith,

Oh how terribly sad, I can imagine how you are feeling, I know how much you love your beautiful Doves.

Only last week I was talking to a lady I look after and she was telling me about a Sparrow Hawk in her garden who had taken her cherished Doves that she always loved to feed daily in her garden.

I am so sorry for the loss of your darling Dove Faith, deeply distressing for you, my love and hugs and just to say I am thinking of you today dear Faith.


Posted by: Camilla on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:58AM

Faith's Avatar Thank you for your support dear purple people.

It was definitely a hawk. I didnt see it but I have seen the result of hawk strikes before, and they don't necessarily take the body away - they just rip out the soft bits and eat them - which it did. Also I have only once, I think, seen a cat in the garden, but I have seen many hawks around.

I put the body on the hedge near the dovecote. Hope came out, didnt seem to take any notice, flew to the roof, relieved herself, then flew down, ate some food, drank from the bowl and thankfully flew back to the babies. I then removed Glory's body.

I have emailed a couple of dove blokes but havent had a reply yet.

I'm going down to see my mum this afternoon and stay overnight so my sister has company this evening. Mummy goes to bed at 8.30pm so its a long evening alone for my sister every day.


Posted by: Faith on 22nd Mar 2009 at 01:23PM

Inthemud's Avatar Oh, dear Faith, That is dreadful. How utterly awful.

Sending you a big purple hug.

Love Elaine

Posted by: Inthemud on 22nd Mar 2009 at 01:31PM

KittyB's Avatar How horrifying for you Faith - hope you are feeling a bit better. And hope you have a nice time with your Mum/sister. x

Posted by: KittyB on 22nd Mar 2009 at 06:57PM

Fennie's Avatar Dear Faith, I am so sorry for you. This is tragic and terrible. Don't blame yourself. I am sure Hope will pill through with her squabs.

Posted by: Fennie on 22nd Mar 2009 at 09:52PM

Cait's Avatar Oh Faith only just read this. I am so sorry.
No doubt the mother dove will concentrate on rearing the chicks, it will be her natural instinct as a mother.
As Fennie said you mustn't blame yourself. Nature is cruel, it is a fact.
Big hug,

Posted by: Cait on 22nd Mar 2009 at 10:13PM

Patsy's Avatar So sorry Faith, such sad news. Nature is so brutal sometimes and doves are not of course at the top of the food chain. It would be impossible for you to protect them from the risk of every predator.

I'm sure you will do all you can to help Hope raise her brood with access to lots of extra food.

King regards

Posted by: Patsy on 23rd Mar 2009 at 01:30PM

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