A bird carrying a snake in its talons struck power lines north of San Diego, sparking a hillside fire just west of The Merge.
San Diego Police arrived to the location on Dunhill Street near the intersection of Interstates 5 and 805 just before 6 a.m.
Flames were burning very close to businesses including the General Atomics building, officials said.
Officers called in San Diego Fire-Rescue crews who contained the fire within an hour.
Fire officials initially told NBC 7 a bird with a snake in its mouth was electrocuted on a power line and fell to the ground, sparking the fire. A photo released by officials later shows the snake in the hawk's grasp.
"A hawk that hit the high voltage power line, caught fire, and fell to the ground," SD Fire-Rescue spokesperson Lee Swanson said in a written release.
There were no structures damaged and no evacuations ordered.
This area of San Diego is home to many companies in the region's biochemical industry.