Napa Lake: Flights of Fancy

Updated: 2015-05-18 07:47

By Han Lianxian(China Daily)

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Napa Lake: Flights of Fancy

[Photo by Peng Jiansheng/China Daily]

I saw my first white-tailed eagles in the winter of 1991. Napa now hosts more than 30.

They mostly eat fish and ducks.

The raptors fight crows for fish. The smaller warriors unite to beat the bomber-like birds.

I once saw four crows conspire against an eagle. They seemed to have a battle plan. One agitated; one guarded that eagle; and the other two ambushed from behind.

Raptors are common.

I saw a kestrel strike like lightening and float up clutching a rat.

Steppe eagles suddenly snatch bar-headed geese and crush their heads with their talons.

These eagles also often chew into dead cattle and sheep. Their powerful maws enable them to rip open hides to gobble the insides.