Okay, this is simply the most gorgeous slow motion photography I have ever seen of a bird of prey. Do, do select at least 720HD if you can, and watch it full screen.
The Slow Mo Guys went to a parking lot (you can tell they’re Brits because they call it a “car park”) which is known as a spot where red kites scavenge bits of raw bacon. Red kites are something of a celebrity bird in Britain, where their numbers dwindled down to just a few pairs before beginning a slow recovery. They also happen to be beautiful (though I may be biased on this). I’ve seen them high up in the sky here in Portugal, but even through binoculars I’ve never seen them like this.
As you watch the video, notice the ruffling of the feathers on the bird’s backs as they swoop in to make a food grab. And check out their eyes — you can actually see them looking down at the target, then shifting their focus up and away the moment their feet make contact.
(Via the Guardian, which has a nice bit of info on the wing tags, as well as what red kites eat when they’re not snagging bacon bits.)