Moment pipit attacks cuckoo mid-flight in revenge bid

Photographer Lee Dwyer captured the rare image of the scuffle in North Usit.

Moment pipit attacks cuckoo mid-flight in revenge bid Lee O'Dwyer / SWNS

This is the moment a cuckoo was attacked in mid-flight by a tiny revenge-seeking pipit.

The brave meadow pipit harassed its much larger foe as it pecked and dived on top of it in response to it ‘stealing’ its nests to lay eggs.

There was no let-up for the cuckoo during the mid-morning scuffle in North Uist which took place both in flight and after landing.

Cuckoos are often targeted by pipits as they lay their eggs in the smaller bird’s nest.

Once hatched, cuckoo chicks heave the host bird’s eggs and offspring out of the nest before tricking the mother bird into raising a cuckoo instead of a brood of its own.

Photographer Lee O’Dwyer, 67, from Lytham St Annes, Lancs said: “Pipits hate cuckoos, it’s an inbuilt thing.

“They know the cuckoo is going to lay its eggs in their nest.

“The pipits will mob them from every angle and even draw blood.”