Friday, January 07, 2011

New Red-tailed Hawk Territory?

The following Brooklyn Red-tailed Hawk observation was posted this week on one of the local discussion groups.

Frank Gresham posted this on the Yahoo Group eBirds NYC:

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Gregarious Hawk in Fort Greene Park

While strolling in Fort Greene Park over the weekend, sans bird book or bins, I came upon a hawk perched in a VERY low branch of a cluster of Ginko trees near the Ranger station at the top of the hill in the center of the park. Two people were directly beneath the bird, trying to shoo it up to a higher branch where it might not be such an easy mark for passing troublemakers. But the hawk would not budge from its low perch. The people said the hawk had been in that area of the park, exhibiting such gregarious behavior, for weeks already. Finally the hawk flew to another bank of higher trees in the northern reach of the park. I am not a raptor expert, so I am hesitant to name its species with certainty. But upon consulting my field guide afterwards, the hawk appeared to be an immature Red Tail. Keep an eye out for it if you are walking the northern reaches of Fort Greene Park, especially up on the Martyr's Monument hill.

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Given the park's closeness to Prospect Park, it is very likely that this hawk is one of Prospect's 2010 offspring. Young hawks are typically not very wary of people. Usually, by their first Spring they learn to be more stealthy.

2 comments:

Monica said...

Not sure if this is meaningful ... About a year and half ago, I sighted a red-tail in a smallish park near the Brooklyn Navy yard.

Matthew said...

Fort Green Park has been a reliable red-tailed hawk sighting spot for me over the years. The Brooklyn Tech antenna next door is a good place to scan for perching raptors. The park also hosts a feral honey bee nest.

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