Do pumas eat hawks?

Someone asked, ‘Do pumas eat hawks?’. I’ll try and answer the question.

The first point to make is that pumas (aka cougars or mountain lions) will kill any animal in a vulnerable position. Pumas quite often eat birds. Pumas in Florida, California, Utah of North America eat birds judging by an examination of their scats (poop).

In South America, pumas in Torres del Paine National Park, Chile, Paraguay and on the Mexico-Texas border eat birds also based on an examination of their scats.

Therefore we can conclude that pumas eat birds. But how vulnerable is the hawk? We don’t know if pumas eat hawks. It seems likely that on occasion hawks are taken by pumas when they become old and are dying or a chick finds herself in a vulnerable situation.

Puma climbing a tree
Puma climbing a tree
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

The books say that the only predator of hawks are larger hawks and eagles. I am sure that they are the main predators. My research indicates that hawks nest in relatively inaccessible places for obvious reasons. But pumas are great jumpers and climbers. I don’t think it is impossible to foresee the possibility of a puma eating hawk chicks from a nest.

I conclude that the puma rarely eats a hawk but it may happen from time to time because of unusual circumstances.

Incidentally, pumas pluck birds before eating them. Wild cat species such as the caracal catch birds in flight as they are taking off.

If you have personal experience of pumas eating birds please tell me in a comment.

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