Dog Eat Dog: Crow Eat Mouse

DATELINE: And a Turtledove in a Maple Tree!

 

Mill Circle is not a place for underdogs.

There is not much sympathy for those who face the ravages of natural disaster—or predatory problems. And, this week a few of the denizens of Mill Circle found themselves in crisis mode.

Of all the sad misadventures of the week, our local turtledove may have had the worst. Though a sudden summer squall came through the hills of Worcester County, knocking out power overnight for residents, only one resident actually lost his home.

There, sitting in the yard amidst the branches of fallen limbs was a long, deep, carefully crafted bird’s nest, likely blown out of the tallest nearby maple tree. The grand maple of Mill Circle stands over the private park, but it is on the windiest hill and angle.

When we looked out in the dim sunset light, there was a morose and perfectly still turtledove, standing next to the nest.

He seemed to be contemplating all his work for naught. Whereas on a normal visit, he would swoop in, peck about and be gone quickly, he was in a state of shock. He walked around the fallen nest for a long time.

We were able to retrieve our camera from the iPhone and snap a picture, and even a little movie of the tragedy.

On the other hand, across the field on the other side of the private park, we watched ruffian gang members taking a toll on another resident.

Six crows had alighted in the field, dancing about in a circle, taking turns jumping into the middle. Then, we saw the object of their cruelty. Each one, in turn, picked up a field mouse and tossed it into the air. Another rushed over and pecked. We could see that the mouse was alive during their cat and mouse games.

The field rodent tried to run away but was pulled back into the circle where he was tossed about like a rag-doll. Every time he tried to escape, they yanked him back to their circle jerk.

It was another typical occasion of life’s inhumanity on Mill Circle.

Dr. William Russo often writes natural tales about Mill Circle. Some of these are collected in A Grand Maple Tree on Mill Circle and Mysterious Mill Circle. These stories are available on Amazon.com for smart-readers and in book form.