2.05.2006

Through a Window Dirty

This red-shouldered hawk (Buteo lineatus) spends a lot of time hunting in our yard. We see it quite regularly, perched on a limb over the garden or sitting in the heartnut tree scanning the side yard. Normally it behaves in a very proper hawk-like manner, but the other day it suffered a momentary identity crisis.
It flew to the ground and did an excellent impression of a robin. It would hop about, head cocked to the side, apparently watching and listening to something on the ground. Then, instead of pecking as a robin would, it would grab at the ground with its talon and come up with a hunk of grass.

We never could see what it was after. Red-shoulders eat a variety of critters including snakes and rodents, but we never saw it actually eat anything while it was doing its robin-thing. Who knows, maybe it was just having fun perplexing the humans who were peering at it through the dirty window :) Posted by Picasa

7 comments:

Floridacracker said...

I've seen them do similar. I always wondered if they were hearing a shrew that I could not see under the soil or litter.

SquirrleyMojo said...

I saw a hawk once as I was crossing onto an over pass; she hung in the air, right above the railing, on a gust of air as she eyed the traffice below . . . quite breath taking to be so close.

Killer said...

It was after a storeria dekayi, you just couldn't see it.

TDharma said...

great photo -- i can almost touch those downy feathers. beautiful bird, lucky you.

Jim said...

A very compelling photo, and the hawk seems quite interested in the photographer too. I've noticed the birds here watch me in a much more relaxed manner when I photograph them through windows, almost with a real curiousity rather than apprehension.

Sometimes the Stellar Jays will sit on the deck railing and look in the windows. I'm not sure if they're watching us, glaring at the cat, or admiring themselves in the glass.

In the spring, when I spend hours out working in the yard, many birds become accustomed to my presence and will land within inches of me, going about their business as if I were one of them, but this time of year all seem a bit high strung and nervous.

Kentucky Brat said...

Oh Swamp, he's so pretty!! I have a pair here in the neighborhood. I have some pretty good pictures of one of them eating a squirl!!! Poor thing bout knocked himself (herself) out on a tree limb getting it. But after he quit seeing all the stars floating around his head, he didn't leave much of his catch. Pretty cool tho.

Silver Zephyr said...

What an incredibly handsome man!