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Taipei Zoo first records buzzard attack on hornet hive on video

2015/03/09 23:13:11

CNA file photo

Taipei, March 9 (CNA) The Taipei Zoo on Monday released a video of crested honey buzzards feasting on a hornet hive at the zoo.

The video first showed an intact one-meter-long hive, hanging from a tree in the zoo, which keepers said had been around since last year.

Then a buzzard pecked at pupae and eggs from the hive, with the interior exposed after several buzzards attacked the hive, leaving a big hole.

The zoo said the buzzards did not attack the hive until early last month.

One buzzard was caught on the video eating from the hive with his body upside-down.

The zoo said it was the first time it had captured the rare birds feasting on a hornet hive on its premises.

To counter the threats posed by the hornets, the buzzards attacked as a group, taking turns assaulting the hive or created a diversion so that other birds could attack.

Researchers said the birds used to pass through Taiwan each year with other migratory birds of prey. Between 1970 and 1990, some buzzards were found to reside on the island, when the number of bee farmers on the island peaked.

Researchers attributed changes in the birds' behavior to extensive bee farming during that period.

(By Yu Kai-hsiang and Scully Hsiao)