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Small subjects accurate point focus (issues 1 & 2)

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I recently moved to A9 +200-600mm +1.4x and finding serious problems quite often with the AF not able to focus precisely on small point like objects against distant backgrounds. My earlier Canon 7D MK II + 500mm f4 + 1.4x, the AF pin-pointing was not as bad as this.

Here  is one sample image attached as an example,

1. where the owl is quite small in the frame and against a tree and the A9+200-600mm+1.4x combination, the AF tends to focus predominantly on the tree in the background which is understandable but there is no way I could aim to spot focus accurately on the bird ahead of it.

2. The AF also freezes if I try to focus quickly from a far away object to a closer objects (say a bird suddenly coming in and seated on a branch just next to me) .

I usually use the "Zone" focus pattern. I even tried the flexible focus point mode (S, M, L) but its much worst than the zone focus.

Appreciate any similar experiences / kind suggestions / pointers please. I have raised this problem to Sony support team, but no satisfactory solution yet.



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