Hawks at Jordan Dam Today; Whew, 3 species!!!!!
I had spent all winter trying to get a photo of the first hawk in this group of Buteo hawks.
Buteo hawks are all called broad-winged hawks which is confusing because in the group there is a Broad-Winged Hawk!
This morning a medium-sized hawk appeared from the hill above the dam: it was my elusive Broad-winged hawk.
Broad-winged Hawk
Often confused with the red-shouldered hawk and even though it is fairly common,
is dismissed as a red-shouldered hawk and we don’t look twice.
Note the broad white tail stripe and the distinct black band that edges the trailing edge of the wing from wing-tips to body.
Red-shouldered Hawk
Looks very similar doesn’t it! But this hawk doesn’t have the broad black band lining the trailing edge of the wing.
BTW this is a juvenile; the other 2 hawks in this group are adults and that can add to the identification problems.
Red-tailed Hawk
All 3 birds are similar, in part because of the body shape and broad-wings.
Look back at the wings of all three hawks.
Note just how much distance there is from leading edge to trailing edge of the wing: BROAD WINGS indeed!

The golden hour gilds not only bald eagles, but red-shouldered hawks too.
 
This juvenile was very intent on something across the swampy part of the cove.
 
 
His interest pegged up a notch and he tapped his foot in anticipation.
 
 
His kee-ah, kee-ah call announced his growing impatience and readiness to hunt.
 
 
He glanced intently at me, making very certain I was watching – all youngsters want attention!
 
 
Then he launched and I wished him luck on his hunt.

Time for a Ramble in the Jordan Lake Neighborhood
 
The Cooper’s hawk is small, swift and often takes medium-sized birds while in flight.
 
 
 
Cedar waxwings are winter visitors here.
They love cedar berries and you can see the red “wax” at the inside lower edge of this one’s wing.
 
 
 
 
 
The first time I saw a Bonaparte gull I thought it was some species of tern.
These are dancers just above the water as they hunt for fish.
 
 
 
 
Immature great blue herons often look like they are feathered in a wash made from grey and pink pearls.
 
 

I was sitting at my computer yesterday, editing photos.
My cat Grayced was lying just inside the picture window.
Suddenly Grayced levitated off his cushion and I stopped breathing when this red-tailed hawk appeared within 2 feet of the window.
This is actually the second pass of the hawk as he tried for a songbird at my feeder – I didn’t have camera in hand for the first pass.
The red-tailed hawk missed the songbird.  About stopped my heart.  Scared my cat silly.
Whew!!!!!

First Day of Spring in the Jordan Lake Neighborhood
 
It was wet, grey, windy and the eagle nests hard to photograph, so …
 
A very wet bedraggled Cooper’s hawk paused on a post to try to dry his feathers.
 
 
The maples were resplendent with their winged seeds.
 
 
And a single raindrop caught my attention as it glittered against a dark green boldly veined leaf and reflected the surrounding trees.