Sunday, January 16, 2005

Sunday morning greeting

The view from our kitchen table is pretty mundane. It's a concrete courtyard with patches of weeds occupying jagged cracks, four story brick walls checkerboarded with impersonal rectangular windows and a flat roof line periodically broken by crooked, grey antennas. On the building directly across from us there is one antenna that is taller than the others. The high point is usually taken over by starlings but has been a temporary roost for robins, mourning doves, Blue Jays, mockingbirds and, infrequently, kestrels. I've gotten into the habit of checking the antenna whenever I sit down at the table. This morning I sat down for breakfast, looked out the window then called my wife over. An adult Red-tailed Hawk was perched precariously atop the wobbly antenna. I ran to the other room and grabbed my camera. Just as I returned to the window he bent over, pooped then took off down the slope towards Manhattan. Now there's a fine Sunday morning greeting!

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I have a similar view from my home computer. There is an antenna that couldn't be more than 40 feet away. I've enjoyed treating the view as my own backyard for birding purposes. Lately, I've seen less and less of the local kestrel but plenty more red-tails. A few have moved into the territory.
Mike
www.10000birds.com

Anonymous said...

No backyard here either. My PC is in front of a window facing the fire escape. Attached to the window with suction cups is a tube feeder filled with sunflower seeds. A suet feeder is festooned to the fire escape railing. There is also a small dish of water. Daily visitors are rock pigeons, house sparrows, mourning doves, starlings, house finches and monk parakeets. No Great Cormorants--yet.

Karen

Rob J. said...

I sometimes like to refer to the neighborhood bird feeders as "hawk feeders". My friend Steve has a great photo of a Sharp-shinned Hawk perched on a telephone pole in his backyard and looking down (lookingly) at the birds on his feeder.

http://homepage.mac.com/snanz/BirdsOfPrey/PhotoAlbum63.html

Anonymous said...

I prefer to think of it as a "compact birding center." Actually, I don't see much predation. However, American Kestrals do stop by sporadically and, more often than not, house finches sadly seem to be on the menu. The Monk Parakeets started showing up a few months ago and they may have attracted the attention of a Sharp-shinned Hawk which I saw recently for the first time on the fire escape railing. However, Monk Parakeets generally have a "lookout" perched nearby, so they always scatter at the first sign of danger. For more information on Monk Parakeets: http://invasions.bio.utk.edu/invaders/monk.html.

Karen

Exploring urban nature, birds, birdwatching, birding, hummingbirds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees, hawks, raptors, wildflowers, trees, mushrooms, environment, binoculars, spotting scope