Red-tailed hawk with a gopher snake: A mini essay in photos

This is a mini essay, because there are only two photos in this series. This post goes with one of a few days ago- Red-shouldered Hawk swallowing a snake. It shows and contrasts two very different ways in which raptors can eat a snake. I am guessing that the two different styles are at least somewhat dependent on the size of the snake. It would be much harder to swallow a gopher snake the size that this Red-tailed hawk is eating, so it shreds the meat, almost looking like it simply unzipped the snake.

Posting these pictures was inspired from a comment on the other post. Thanks Pamalah.

Enjoy these two pictures,


I took this photograph from slightly farther away

After walking a little closer I was able to capture this image which showed at least a little more detail of the snake being "unzipped"

About Galen Leeds Photography

Nature and wildlife photographer, exploring the world on his feet and from his kayak. Among other genres, he is one of the leading kayak photographers in Northern California. To learn more about him, visit him on his website-
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