Saturday, March 10, 2012

Intrepid. the Riverside Mom is Dead-UPDATED

Photo by Donegal Browne

  Intrepid, the Riverside Mom was found dead beneath the tree in which her nest had been built.  There were no apparent injuries.

We called her Intrepid as her first nest, which eventually fell, was situated far out on a limb which bobbed dangerously in the wind and "out on limb" was where she as an urban hawk intrepidly attempted to live her life and where she lost it after loosing eyasses to poison, fledglings to speeding cars and her mate poisoned as well.

 We shall miss her courage, her beauty and her perseverance.
May she now rest, finally at peace.

Photo by Donegal Browne
Photo by Donegal Browne

Third hawk found dead in Manhattan park

All three hawks appeared to be healthy and uninjured

Comments (5)

For the third time in less than two weeks, a hawk has been found dead in a Manhattan park.
The female hawk, who had nested in Riverside Park for years, was found Friday under the tree where she nested. An Urban Park Ranger picked up the body about 12:30 p.m.
The discovery comes less than two weeks after the body of Pale Male's mate, Lima, was discovered in Central Park. Another hawk was found dead in a section of Central Park near Columbus Circle last Sunday.

"They all appeared to be healthy and didn't have any traumatic injuries," said Bobby Horvath, a wildlife rehabilitator. "It's not like they were hit by a car or crashed into a building."
Horvath said it’s too soon to know for sure if the birds ate a poisoned rat or where they could have picked it up.

"They birds aren't married to these parks, they hunt outside," he said. "High-rise buildings and restaurants still use poison."

Horvath said a fourth hawk was found stumbling in the northern part of Central Park several weeks ago. It died 24 hours later.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is conducting tests on the dead birds to determine if they were felled by poison or something else.

Birdwatchers in Riverside Park have closely followed the female hawk, who had chicks every year.
"Every year there is a tragedy with this poor bird," said Horvath, who has helped care for the hawk and her offspring over the years. "One year there was storm, the nest blew out of a tree and three babies died and last year her mate was found dead by a Dumpster."

A post script, whether Intrepid was poisoned or not, her mate and a number of her offspring have been.  Awhile back,  I was contacted by a maintenance person who works in a building adjacent to Riverside Park.  He told me that the building in which he is employed uses the second generation poison which the slightest ingested amount causes raptors to drop dead.  One bite of poisoned prey of this sort is more than enough.

 Intrepid's mate was found to have been poisoned by a compound which was not one being used in Riverside Park.  And assumption could be made that the rat which poisoned him had been poisoned by someone who laid poison in or directly around a building near to Riverside Park.

Hence not only must we be vigilant about poisons the parks may put down and stress sanitation but to find ways to educate those who live in the buildings of NYC and beyond to investigate the policies of the buildings in which they live and if necessary try to do something about the practice.

 Educating those who don't understand the issues can be instrumental in saving wildlife. In some cities citizens have distributed flyers with the facts concerning secondary poisoning, that not all rat poisons are alike, and that sanitation is the real answer.

We must all do what we can, or soon particularly when it comes to the repercussions of these second generation poisons there will be no more urban hawks. 

In  Central Park and Riverside alone, there are four dead hawks in the last month that we know of.  No we do not know that these four died of poison.  Nor do we know how many more have died in the city that we don't know about but some  will have died due to poison.  Poison that will have been laid by members of our own species who did it because of ignorance or sloth.
What can you do that will make a difference?

How the news of Intrepid, Riverside Mom's death came to the Hawk Bench--in from Katherine Herzog

While watching Pale Male and Zena on their Fifth Avenue nest from the "Hawk Bench", a Park's Ranger came over to me and told me the body of a Red-tailed hawk was found this morning on the ground in riverside Park underneath an active Red-tailed Hawk nest tree.  He strongly believed it was the female who has been using the nest for the past two years.

That's the 4th red-tail hawk death, that we know of, in Manhattan in a few weeks time-this one in Riverside Park and the other three in Central Park.

Donegal Browne


Karen Anne said...

All because humans think spreading poison is preferably to cleaning up their garbage.

This is getting to be unbelievable. How long will Pale Male survive, since he's obviously catching rats in Lincoln's photos.

Sally said...

So sad indeed! :( Do you know if anyone is testing Intrepid's body?

Donegal Browne said...


The word amongst watchers is that Intrepid's body is to be tested. I do not have official word that that is being done though.

Sally said...

This is all so sad...we do get so attached to these special creatures as we watch them in their daily struggles. I think it matters that we, and that people who watch share with others, and that we name them. When things like this death, Lima/s death, or the possiblity of the Norfolk eagle nest being removed, are brought to people's attention, surel it has to have some positive impact somewhere in our collective conscience that we the people who share the planet have got to wake up and be invvolved. in a positive way? Thank you and everyone for continuing to share observations and thoughts and musings....