A plot twist right out of “Falcon Crest” has unfolded in the soaring soap opera playing out above Tompkins Square Park.
Dora the red-tailed hawk — beloved by bird watchers but scorned by three-timing sweetheart Christo — has finally flown her East Village coop.
She now resides permanently at a Long Island nature preserve, after one of Christo’s two side chicks clawed her so badly that she may never fly again.
They “thought they were going to take over her nesting spot,” explained Cathy Horvath of Wildlife in Need of Rescue and Rehabilitation, which rescued and rehabbed Dora.
“She was badly beat up. She was bloody. She had puncture wounds.”
The drama began in the winter of 2017, when Dora returned from wing rehab for a minor injury to find that a homewrecking hawk, Nora, had swooped in on her longtime love.
The 10 chicks Dora raised with Christo over the years apparently weren’t enough to tie him down, even though hawk pairs are known to mate for life.
Last spring, another cheep slut, Amelia, appeared, and she and Christo were even brazen enough to tryst in Dora’s old nest, near East 8th Street and Avenue B, while
Christo serviced Nora on the side at another perch.
Dora at that point was forced to fight for Christo’s attention.
In an air battle above the park, Amelia clawed Dora with her talons, tearing a muscle and leaving her with a permanently lame left wing.
Now Dora, about 3 years old, spends her days in a chain-link enclosure at Tackapausha Museum and Preserve in Seaford, noshing on rats and mice between preening and hopping from the ground to her perch.
Amelia, meanwhile, is building a family with Dora’s former flame, hatching a second set of chicks about two weeks ago in the park.
Horvath offered one possible reason Christo flew the coop.
“She’s not a friendly bird,” Horvath said of Dora. “She was the worst patient ever.”
Nature photographer Laura Goggin, who has chronicled Christo’s escapades on her blog, said Dora had a demanding nature.
“I think Dora relied on Christo more,” she said. “He waited on her, and she was more of a queen. Amelia seems to be more independent.”
But there is hope for a happily ever after.
Dora has been bonding with another injured hawk named Winston.
“They co-exist, but it’s a platonic relationship,” said Horvath. “I don’t blame her.”
Source: Read Full Article