Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Images for Comparison of NYU/Washington Square Red-tailed Hawk -Violet's Leg from March 12, 2010, October 30, 2010, and May 6 & 7 2011
Photograph courtesy of Zach L.
March 12, 2010
This was the original photo in which I noted that the formel (Now named Violet.) of the Red-tail pair building a nest on 1 Fifth Avenue was banded.
Photograph cropped and lightened for a better view.
There is some swelling visible below the band. The band is obviously tight though she was doing nest building chores without obvious problems.
And a closer crop.
Photograph courtesy of palemale.com
My apologies to the photographer for adjusting the photo below for purposes of documentation.
October 30, 2010
6 and 1/2 months since the perched photo above. Compare her legs and feet.
October 30, 2010
Obvious swelling both above and below the constricting band. Plus unnatural positioning of the talons during flight.
Screen captures by Julia G.
Courtesy of NYU Hawk cam and The NYTimes
May 6, 2011
Approximately 6 months since the flight photograph above. The foot is bent in an unnatural angle and there is more swelling between the band and the talons. Violet appears to have less control and movement in the appendage.
Violet is the hawk on the left.
May 7, 2011
It may be positioning but Violet's foot looks more swollen and contracted than it did one day previously. She appeared to have more trouble keeping her balance on that leg on the 7th than she did on the 6th.
Even with her great attention to caring for her first eyass it is possible that Violet might loose her balance and accidentally injure or kill him.
There is little room for error or accident on a hawk's nest. Exactly the reason that if capable a hawk parent curls his or her talons completely under the foot when in the nest bowl.
The look of Violets right foot reminds me of what occurs when a city pigeon's foot becomes entangled in thread. Swelling continues to rise causing ligation, which causes more swelling, and even more ligation until eventually the foot atrophies completely and falls off.