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Red kite following a dog (1 Viewer)

lisa3

New member
United Kingdom
Hello everyone :)
I sometimes walk my dog (smallish and pretty narrow boarder collie) on the North Downs near Dorking. We have had a huge increase in buzzard and kites and it's lovely to watch them, however, last week, this one moved over to above where my dog was. It was clearly watching what him. My dog was a good 100m away from me. I called him back and as he made his way, running around as he does, the bird was definitely following him. By the time he was 50m from me, the bird was about 20m above him, still watching.

I'm wondering if
1. the bird was REALLY hungry, thought he was smaller as he is thin, or was young or feeling bold
2. they have learned that dogs may flush out prey such as rabbits, for an easy kill

would welcome any comments :)

Lisa
 

delia todd

If I said the wrong thing it was a Senior Moment
Staff member
Opus Editor
Supporter
Scotland
Hi Lisa and a warm welcome to you from all the Staff and Moderators.

I'm sure you will enjoy it here and I look forward to hearing your news.
 

Kits

Picture Picker
Welcome to Birdforum! I am sure that you will find lots to interest you here and I hope you enjoy your visits.

It is doubtful that a buzzard or kite would try to take a border collie.
 

Deb Burhinus

Used to be well known! 😎
Europe
Hi Lisa

Big warm welcome to Birdforum 🙂

Don’t worry about your dog - Red Kite are predominately carrion eaters - if they do take live prey which is not very often, then it’s small mammals or usually earthworms.

I sounds to me it is planning to nest nearby and is feeling threatened by your dog running around. Perhaps, to avoid the birds being disturbed from now through to the end of the breeding season, you might walk your dog in another location? - I guess you have options as you do say you only ‘sometimes’ walk him in this area.

I can assure you your Collie dog is in no danger of being predated by a Red Kite or any bird of prey on the North Downs.

As regards the idea that the Kite was stalking your dog to see if it would flush out prey, it’s not impossible but a) as said they predominately eat earthworms if they take live prey - b) I think being threatened near a nest site is a more likely explanation. All birds see dogs as threats even though the dog is completely well behaved and no where near an actual nest. My dog used to get dive-bombed by the Herring Gulls in the local park every breeding season, when all she was doing was chasing a ball!
 

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
Hi Lisa and welcome to BirdForum. We often have Swallows buzzing around the dog over the field. I’ve always assumed it because he flushing insects.

Rich
 

lisa3

New member
United Kingdom
Hi Lisa

Big warm welcome to Birdforum 🙂

Don’t worry about your dog - Red Kite are predominately carrion eaters - if they do take live prey which is not very often, then it’s small mammals or usually earthworms.

I sounds to me it is planning to nest nearby and is feeling threatened by your dog running around. Perhaps, to avoid the birds being disturbed from now through to the end of the breeding season, you might walk your dog in another location? - I guess you have options as you do say you only ‘sometimes’ walk him in this area.

I can assure you your Collie dog is in no danger of being predated by a Red Kite or any bird of prey on the North Downs.

As regards the idea that the Kite was stalking your dog to see if it would flush out prey, it’s not impossible but a) as said they predominately eat earthworms if they take live prey - b) I think being threatened near a nest site is a more likely explanation. All birds see dogs as threats even though the dog is completely well behaved and no where near an actual nest. My dog used to get dive-bombed by the Herring Gulls in the local park every breeding season, when all she was doing was chasing a ball!
Thanks Deb, that's really reassuring!

The place I was, I only go every couple of weeks, but it is a popular route and there will probably be 10 - 20 dog walkers each day and up to 50 on a nice weekend day. I will put some posts on social media asking people to try to keep their dogs away from the area where the birds are likely to be (it's quite a distance from the main path) to ensure the birds have space and don't feel pressured.

I'm sure the general increase in kites and buzzards is bringing a very welcome reduction in the number of small rodents :)

Lisa
 

Deb Burhinus

Used to be well known! 😎
Europe
Thanks Deb, that's really reassuring!

The place I was, I only go every couple of weeks, but it is a popular route and there will probably be 10 - 20 dog walkers each day and up to 50 on a nice weekend day. I will put some posts on social media asking people to try to keep their dogs away from the area where the birds are likely to be (it's quite a distance from the main path) to ensure the birds have space and don't feel pressured.

I'm sure the general increase in kites and buzzards is bringing a very welcome reduction in the number of small rodents :)

Lisa
You are very welcome lisa!

And it’s a good idea to suggest people move their dogs away from any Kites or Buzzards behaving ‘aggressively’ and explain that any ‘aggressive’ behavior is because they are likely feeling threatened, more so as it is breeding season. However, I wouldn’t put any information regarding location of nests/specific areas on social media - unfortunately there are still problems with egg collectors and raptor persecution in the UK so it’s always better to err on the side of caution and treat any information of nesting locations you are privy to as ‘privileged’ 😉
 

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