LAKEVILLE (CBS) – A 38-year-old man is recovering from head wounds and a concussion after being attacked by a hawk last week in Lakeville.

“He didn’t hear it or see it,” the man’s father, John Ryder said. “It was on top of him and I think he was helpless at the time.”

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The hawk that attacked the man lives in an oak tree nearby. It has a nest with at least one chick in it.

The nest is right above Kristen Iolli’s mailbox. After the attack on her neighbor, she drives her car to the mailbox. “I’m afraid to get the mail,” Iolli said.

The nest and the tree are on Les Garnier’s property. He loves to watch birds, but has had to take down his bird feeder, so that the hawks wouldn’t make a meal of the smaller animals.

In the same neighborhood two years ago, a woman was a walking down the street when a hawk flew down and grabbed the back of her head. The woman was wearing a wig and the hawk took off with it. The wig was found in the hawk’s nest and the town got rid of the nest.

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Wildlife experts say hawk attacks on people are rare, but they do happen.

“It is not very common for (hawks) to show aggressive behavior toward people,” said Amy Mahler of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. “Aggressive behavior normally occurs in close proximity to their nest or their fledged young because they perceive people as a threat and they’re simply trying to defend their young.”

Mahler says her office did investigate the hawk attack and was able to locate the nest. There are now signs posted in the area warning people to use caution.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Laurie Kirby reports

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