Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Broad Winged hawk comes to work

Today, I had another broad winged hawk encounter but with a better camera than the last time. This hawk was at work roosting in the trees around the parking lot but right in front of the office window. At first it appeared injured as it hobbled around on the ground and flew from branch to ground to branch, but around lunchtime I saw it soaring high above, so I imagine that it is fine.

(click for larger images)

Here it is perched.

Perched with eyes closed

Perched with a good shot of the tail below the branch as well.

On the ground facing toward.

On the ground facing away.

After some further review of hawks on the web, this appears to be an immature broad winged hawk and not a Cooper's hawk (no red eyes) or Red Tailed hawk (no red tail). The broad-winged hawk (Buteo platypterus) summers in the eastern United States and is very common.

I would still like the expert opinion of a bird watcher, especially if they were familiar with birds of the eastern United States or the Delmarva peninsula.


whirdly said...

Great pics!

The Virtual Ranger said...

What an impressive bird! I'm not even an expert in birds this side of the Atlantic but I'm a sucker for a big raptor. Nice shots.

Anna Lewis said...

That's definitely an immature goshawk (same family as Cooper's hawk). Accipiters gradually get the red eyes after several years but as young birds their eyes are gray to yellow. First-year goshawks have heavy streaking on their breasts but they molt out to pale grey breasts and steel-grey backs. That super-long tail is a dead giveaway for an accipiter. Check out the comments in this related post; Steve Bodio is a renowned falconer. http://cameratrapcodger.blogspot.com/2008/01/carcass-visitors-day-10.html