I've seen crows gang up on a hawk before, to keep the hawk away from their nesting areas, and therefore, eggs. A hawk is larger and a better flyer, but is no match when outnumbered three to one.
This fight was one on one, and something to see. As they climbed, dived, swooped and turned, each bird gave it their all. The crow seemed faster, but the hawk was quicker. The crow seemed brighter, but the hawk was smarter. It seemed neither had the advantage at first. But in the end, the hawk was all over that crow. His size, flying skill and strength overwhelmed the crow, who retreated to a distant field. It helps to click on the pictures to see the larger versions.
Yesterday the sky was mostly overcast. In the early afternoon it started to break up a bit with lighter spots and even some blue sky peeking through here and there. As I walked out into the front yard, I heard a familiar high pitched whine and the sound of the air being ripped apart as if it were a sheet of paper. We hear that sound often, as the Mitsubishi F-15 fighter planes of Hyakuri Air Base to our north return from practicing out over the Pacific, usually followed by a Kawasaki T-4 trainer. But this sound was closer than usual, and I looked up to see a lone Mitsubishi F-15J "Peace Eagle" cut across the sky directly overhead in a sharp left bank. He was low, perhaps 400 meters (1200 feet), maybe less, above me. Narita was reporting the cloud ceiling as 1500 feet broken and he was below the clouds. I could clearly see the pilot through the canopy.
When he came around a second time, I went back in the house and grabbed the camera. When he came around for a third time I took a few pics. The angle was not as good as the first pass, and I had to follow him with the camera while holding down the shutter button due to the delay of the digital camera. But I managed to catch a picture while it was right over me, condensating water vapor trails coming off the wing tips.
The second shot - by pure coincidence - included a crow. For a moment it looked like another aerial dogfight!