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Hawk on the Loose

November 16, 2008

Chers Amis,

Look who I found in my Redbud tree this afternoon. Master Broad-wing Hawk. From his perch only a few feet away from my deck, this gentleman had a strategic view of both my finch/songbird feeder and the suet. There were no Carolina chickadees or tufted titmice to be seen, so cold and beret of dinner, he looks quite forlorn and frozen. I almost felt sorry for him until I remembered how another family of hawks – the Coopers – had taken over the yard for a few weeks last summer. At first I thought this poor ‘hawk-cicle’ was one of the Coopers, but his eyes are too dark and the coloration off. Hawks are harder to id than you think, even when perched in your back yard! I know that during the summer we regularly hear Broad-wing hawks circling high above. If anyone can confirm or deny my id, please chime in!

–Marjorie

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. juli koroly (mom) permalink
    November 17, 2008 3:05 pm

    hi honey, I spent some time looking at your Pic but I am not sure what to think, the plumage looks like a junvinile(sp) and the burnt sienna breast and black leading feathers do not match the sources I looked at. I also notinced that the spot of dark on the feathers is not the same shape as the broad wing references. It may just be the difference in the photo’s and in the age of the birds. let me know if you find out anymore. Did you take the picture ?

  2. November 17, 2008 6:51 pm

    I think it is a red shouldered hawk. We had a family of them living in our old neighborhood. At first we thought they were broad-winged hawks as well, but then identified them by their distinctive very loud call.

  3. November 17, 2008 7:18 pm

    I think I will agree with Vicki and say it is a red-shouldered hawk because of the narrower tail bands and the barred wing feathers. Those two species are very similar, though, aren’t they?

  4. November 17, 2008 7:28 pm

    Mom & Vicki, thanks for your input. I think Vicki is right. The pictures at the Cornell site look just like this guy http://www.birds.cornell.edu/AllAboutBirds/BirdGuide/Red-shouldered_Hawk_dtl.html Scroll down to the lower two pictures. Now I am questioning the original Cooper from this summer based on the immature Red-shouldered picture. Hmm. I think I may seek professional help on that id. My curiosity is whetted.

    Thanks also to Theresa – our comments crossed in the ether 🙂

  5. Darci permalink
    December 5, 2008 11:57 am

    We had a hawl like the above appear in our yard one morning- completely unafraid of the 5 of us and a dog on our deck only about 12 feet away. We looked it up and found it to be a juvenile Red Shouldered Hawk as well.
    Love your blog. Darci in San Antonio (your mom’s friend)

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