Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Riverside Nest and The Robot Nabbing Hawk

1:05PM Riverside Park: The nest is bigger than the last photo I've seen of it. That's comforting. More and bigger can't help but increase their chances of success.

1:06PM View of the nest from the north. This is my first visit so I don't know if the hawk on the nest is the formel or the tiercel.
1 07 31PM The bird is more hidden from this angle. This is the view from the nearest park bench.

Yes indeed, the nest does over hang the entrance ramp. What criteria made them choose this particular spot? I admit that this is pretty much a rhetorical question, but I can't help trying to figure out why this spot might be "better" in Red-tail eyes than any of the other possibilities in this territory.
This tree is isolated enough so that the parents can come out of it easily from all angles. It has some height above the surrounding area for an elevated view.
The branch that holds the nest seems to be flatter as opposed to tipping up. Was it originally flatter than it's neighbors? Or is the flatness a product of the weight of the nest?
1:08PM The hawk begins to re-situate twigs.
1:11PM She places a twig to the rear.
1:13PM The hawk stands and looks at something in the distance. A few moments later I see another Red-tail beyond the nest flying in the opposite direction.
1:14:14PM Twig in beak. Focus.
1:14:59PM Then the hawk is off the nest and perches in a nearby tree. What is she looking at?
1:17PM She's switched trees again and her beak goes down and small fragments blow away. Feathers? Stashed food? Or bark? Clipping twigs?
1:18:37PM No twig in her beak so perhaps stashed food. Though if it was food, it either wasn't much of a snack or it's hanging from a talon on the far side of the branch.
1:19PM One thing I did notice about the area inside the park, is even in early afternoon, the place is chock full of dogs. Red-tails are not fond of dogs. They seem to get used to people to some extent but are always wary of dogs. I suspect there is wiring involved. See the fence beyond the dog walker? The nest tree is on the far side of that fence. And on the far side of the fence there are no dogs. No dogs could possibly be a criteria for the choice of that tree.
1:22PM The pigeons are lining up on the roofs across the street. The Red-tail larder is looking quite full.
I'm betting that someone comes daily at a specific time and feeds these pigeons. Making the area not far from the nest a prime hunting ground. Handy food. Another possible plus for this nest site.
1:24PM Look between the two largest tree trunks and there is the view of the nest from the sidewalk outside the park.
By the time I cross the street to leave, have gone a block, and look back. There is a pigeon feeder going about her charitable task to the pigeons glee.
Photograph Courtesy of Mary McGorry and NPR.
Yes, this young Red-tail has grabbed a child's Christmas toy. Experts then come into play. Check it out.
Dragonfly Robot nabbing Red-tail link sent in by Anne of Charlotte NC.-
Donegal Browne

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