Keira surveyed the landscape from her perch on top of the garden shed. For two days she had staked out the new territory. There were not many trees, but this made it easier to hunt.
Keira stretched her wings and slowly turned her head. Earlier that day, she had captured a chipmunk that was head first into an apple core in the compost pile. A trio of mice had led it to the food source and then quickly scurried away. Odd. After they left, the chipmunk greedily started eating.
How unrefined, she thought as she swooped toward it.
But now it was getting late, and she was starting to get hungry again. Her eyes darted quickly across the back yard…wondering where those three mice had gone.
* * * * *
Pudgy, Pipsqueak and Gomer knew they were in trouble. Though they had never had any run-ins with the birds, they knew that red-tailed hawks were not friendly to the rodent family. They’d witnessed it first hand. Poor Leo.
“Wh-wh-whatta we do Pudge?” stammered Gomer.
Pudgy was still shaking. It had been a long time since they had to face this kind of danger. They had let guard down, had grown used to living it up in the garage with Lissa’s wrath their only threat. He was angry, mostly with himself for allowing it to happen.
Shaking his head in disgust, his eyes landed on the grape vines in front of the house. Grape vines, that was it!
“That’s it!” he said excitedly.
“What, what’s it?” Pipsqueak asked, eyes darting in case the hawk had found them.
“The grapes, the food throughout the property…if we can convince Lissa to build a few perches, maybe we can reason with the hawk…exchange these perches for amnesty.”
“Yeah, but–” said Pipsqueak, doubtful.
“Hawks eat meat and if they have perches, it would be easier for it to see its…meals,” Pudgy interrupted, guessing Pipsqueak’s question.
“And if we tell Lissa that these perches would help control her pest problems, she might stop being mad at us for showing Leo the gardens?” asked Pipsqueak hopefully. Pudgy nodded.
“Gomer,” Pudgy said, rolling his beady little eyes, “Stop chasing your tail. We have work to do.”