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With my newly-acquired two-headed kestrel (© Dr Karl Shuker)
I may be a cryptozoologist and animal anomalist, but even I have to admit that it’s not every day I go into town to buy some groceries and return home with a two-headed kestrel – but today was one such day!
Browsing in a local market that contains a number of antique/collectors’ stalls, I came upon one stall that I hadn’t seen before. And there, directly before me, was this truly extraordinary exhibit – a two-headed taxiderm specimen of the European kestrel Falco tinnunculus.
Two heads are certainly more eyecatching than one! (© Dr Karl Shuker)
To cut an extremely short story even shorter: reader, I purchased it! It is an adult female specimen (judging from its brown heads), is in excellent condition; and although I have seen various dicephalous chickens and ducks in the past, this is certainly the very first bicephalic bird of prey that I have ever encountered.
Did this bird get ahead by having two heads? (© Karl Shuker)
But is it genuine, a bona fide teratological raptor, or – to use a very apt falconry term – has it been created in order to hoodwink its observers? That is a very good question!
What do you think?
Not quite what I expected when shopping for my groceries! (© Dr Karl Shuker)