Monday, June 24, 2013

Cause of death: Rat Poison - Remembering a Hawk in Madison Square Park

Remembering a Hawk in Madison Square Park

These pictures of a hawk in Madison Square Park were taken in the fall of 2012. It's a red-tailed hawk, and though I saw it frequently last year, I haven't seen it in months. The pictures I posted most recently of a hawk I am sure is a different bird. I was told by someone who might know that the hawk in this picture might've died from eating a rat that died from poisoning, which raises the problem of how an we encourage natural predators when eating their prey will kill them? There will never be enough hawks flying over the and through the  to do the job, nor can they get underground into the sewers and subway tunnels where huge populations of rats breed AND poison is an effective way to keep the rat population under control.

I like seeing the hawks and I have no issue with their preying on squirrels and pigeons - the only animals I've seen them eating in Madison Square Park.

Both of the articles I link to here talk about the problem. There are rat poison boxes scattered around Madison Square Park.

This from the Gothamist in early 2012.

And more recently this from DNAinfo New York.
I believe this article refers I this hawk. Sad.
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