Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Calling all bird experts - Was it a broad-winged hawk in my yard?

The area around my house feels like a wildlife refuge, especially due to the creek in the back. This afternoon a very large hawk was eating something in the front yard. I think it is a broad-winged hawk (Buteo platypterus) but I would love it if a bird expert would confirm my suspicion. It looks like a white morph version and is probably immature from the picture matching that I tried to do. Especially the white front.

I took a variety of pictures using my trusty Treo and shooting through the binoculars.

I apologize as always for the crappy Treo pictures. The blue tinge probably comes from the low light shooting through the binoculars. Any fuzziness is from lack of focus and shaky hands. (My telephoto camera is broken.)

At one point when I was finally trying to leave the house the bird lighted in the juniper out front and I was less than ten feet from it. It was certainly different from seeing a little finch on a branch. The thing looked bigger than me!

It appeared to be eating something. The pile of feathers it left behind seems to indicate that it caught a bird or found its carcass. It was the crows fighting over the carrion that made me look out and see the hawk in the first place.

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