Here is a prime example of my father‘s favorite kind of temperature gauge. I photographed this red shouldered hawk yesterday morning when the wind chill factor was 35°F. Even if I had been sitting in my warm truck, I could have glanced over at this hawk and known that because he is almost as big around as he is tall … the air is cold. He has all of his feathers fluffed up as a nice warm blanket. Also note that he’s got his body lowered so that his feather blanket is mostly covering his feet … just like our warm winter slippers would do.
Doc Ellen’s Evening Note 10/04/2020
Jordan Lake, Haw River: Doc Ellen’s Evening Note 10/04/2020. It is a comfort to me to know that there are a pair of eyes joining those of the Creator to make certain I have undisturbed sleep and sweetest of dreams. Thank you red-tailed hawk for being a guardian this night.
Jordan Lake: Sharp-shinned Hawk Chases an American Crow
The young hawk takes the opportunity to chase an American crow. The hawk is pestering the crow. The crow is much bigger than the hawk’s normal prey of sparrows and warblers. American crows raid hawk nests and steal eggs and chicks. Even though this is a juvenile hawk, he understands the damage a crow can do and decides to remind the crow just how agile a flier is the Sharp-shinned Hawk.
Jordan Lake: Hawk Surprise 09-15-2019
Laugh with Doc Ellen…
Uh, oh. As I watched a hawk zip over my head this morning, I found myself thinking it sure looked liked a “T” in flight and that could make it an Accipiter (Cooper’s hawk or sharp-shinned hawk). But then I glanced at the wings as it zipped past and went to attack a crow that was perched in a tree, and said no, leading wing edge said it had to be a red-shouldered hawk. Then my brain said wait a minute, red-shouldered hawks don’t usually go after something like a crow. And I dismissed all those thoughts because two juvenile eagles went across the sky chasing each other. Then I got home and started looking at this morning’s photos. I should always go with my first thought. It was an Accipiter. Drat that I didn’t notice that LONG tail and its band configuration. The hawk is a sharp-shinned hawk.
Jordan Lake Dam Hawks Today, 3 photos 05-25-2019
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.
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.
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.
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!
Jordan Lake Neighborhood, 5 photos 01/30/2019
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.