Thursday, February 09, 2006

Another hawk in the neighborhood

Camellia bloom (Camellia japonica)

(Photo credit - Rob J)

-Click here for info on camellias-

(A big thank you to Vicki for correcting my misidentification of the above flower)

This afternoon I located another Red-tailed Hawk in the neighborhood. I was walking from Empire Boulevard through the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens to the north entrance on Eastern Parkway. As I passed the Native Flora section the white underside of a perched hawk caught my eye. A Red-tailed Hawk was sitting in a mature beech tree. At first, I assumed that it was the same bird that I had watched in Prospect Park this past Monday. Once I had him in my bins it was clear that he was a different individual.

The smallish hawk has an extremely pale face with a pronounced supercillium. Half of his tail still has the brown banding of a juvenile Red-tailed Hawk. When he flew a short distance I saw that the feathering at the base of his tail was showing the namesake red coloration. Most Red-tailed Hawks develop their brick-red tail in their second year. I presume that this individual is nearing his second birthday. Also, unlike most of the local hawks that I’ve observed, this bird was not tolerant of close approach.

-Click here for info on bird topography-

Snowdrop close-up

(Photo credit - Rob J)

When I was walking home, I was startled by a low flying Red-tailed Hawk near the Upper pool. She was only about fifteen feet above the ground. The largest red-tailed that I’ve seen in a while, I’m pretty sure that she was Big Mama.

Acorn and sycamore seeds in a crack

(Photo credit - Rob J)

- - - - -

Prospect Park & BBG, 2/9/2006
-
Bufflehead (2, Upper pool.)
Cooper's Hawk (imm. BBG.)
Red-tailed Hawk (1, BBG. 1, Long Meadow.)
American Coot
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Picnic area.)
Hairy Woodpecker (1, Vale. 1, Litchfield Villa.)
Black-capped Chickadee (Fairly common.)
Tufted Titmouse (Fairly common.)
White-breasted Nuthatch (2.)
Winter Wren (Midwood.)
Hermit Thrush (Aralia Grove.)
White-throated Sparrow (Common.)
Dark-eyed Junco (Fairly common.)
American Goldfinch (Several.)

Other common species seen (or heard):
Mallard, Ring-billed Gull, Herring Gull, Rock Pigeon, Mourning Dove, Downy Woodpecker, Blue Jay, American Robin, European Starling, Northern Cardinal, Song Sparrow

3 comments:

jnfr said...

I can't believe you have things blooming already! Colorado is so dry and cold, nothing even looks alive.

Rob J. said...

Yeah, I was pretty surprised. It was just one flower on a large section of Camillia. And now they predict 8" of snow for tomorrow. I'll have to re-shoot that flower in the snow.

Vics said...

Thanks for the "thank you." Camellias have always been one of my favorite flowers. When I was a little girl my parents used to take me to Descanso Gardens in Southern California every winter to see the them in bloom. Many of them have gotten so large that they are like trees. My husband knew it was one of my favorite places so he took me there when he proposed.

A brief description of Descanso Gardens:
http://www.descansogardens.org/site/camelliaforest.cfm

We are looking forward to seeing a picture of the camellia you found covered with snow tomorrow if that works out.

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