Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Red-tailed Hawks, Bluebirds, and a Northern Flicker, plus Mama and Papa Have a Hatch

See the Red-tailed Hawk? That white breast does stand out. Likely the hawk is one of the Steams.

This tree is across the street from Threshermen's Park.

We stare at each other.

And we stare some more. She's waiting for me to look away before she'll fly out. I'm stopped in the road and her chance comes when I see a car bearing down on me from behind and have to look away to make a quick car adjustment to the verge before I get smacked.

When I catch sight of her again she's swooped down and is flapping for the next area of trees and brush beside the field.

She curves over and I know she's heading for the cover to the right.

Still flapping.

Then her wings go into a glide position. She glides deftly behind the brush and magically she's gone.

Finally the first day since the last storm when there is no haze or rain and I have enough light to get a definitive photo of the Ms nest from last season. It appears derelict.

Compare it with a photograph taken last May in the full swing of a hatch. The Ms have moved and we don't know to where. Yet. They have been absent from hunting the Oak Tree's field and the power poles by the tracks. Several times previously I'd caught them heading for Mud Lake or the ravine in the subdivision. If all else fails by the time I get back from NYC there may be begging going on that might just give them away, unless they are so far onto private property that we aren't able to hear them.

The Bluebirds have returned again.

And my surprise of the day--a female Northern Flicker. The first I'd seen here in several years. They used to be far more common but the Starlings have co-opted their nesting cavities so have become rarer.

She would pause, stock still whether sun-bathing or waiting for the insects to settle I don't know.

Then her head would go down and go after insects--the greater part of which would be beetles and ants--Flicker favorites. I wonder if they eat Japanese Beetles if so we could certainly use thousands more of her kind and they all would have plenty to eat.

She hears the camera and gives me a look but doesn't flush off.

But rather goes back to her job and her dinner.

Another look...
And more foraging. She stayed all day perhaps she'll remain this year and find a mate. Ten years ago there were always Flickers for the summer.

A fascinating find from Robin of Illinois--

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — An acrobatic display of passion proved too much for a pair of eagles engaged in a mating dance over Alaska's Prince William Sound.
The female bird is recovering from an injured wing and other injuries sustained when the couple slammed beak-first into a hard snowbank in what her rescuers believe was an aerial courting ritual gone awry.



I've been able to confirm my thoughts of this past Saturday that our Briarwood hawk pair Mama and Papa had a hatch. I was able to confirm today that there are two healthy youngsters in the nest. I will be posting images Tuesday of the little ones that are now approximately 3-4 days old, most likely they hatched between 4/8 and 4/9. As far as I know, it appears once again this year that Mama and Papa may have the first hatch of the known Red-tailed Hawk nests in NYC.

Can't wait to hear about good news to be reported from the rest of our Red-tailed hawk nest watchers from around the city.

Best to all,



And a little something I ran across also from the NYTimes,
THE POWER OF MUSHROOMS-Psilocybin the depression fighter?

Donegal Browne

No comments: