Category Archives: Raptor

Stop The Car, I See A Hawk

I see it!

What Ellen sees at first:

Red-Shouldered Hawk

What Ted sees at first and I saw after circling to get a better view:

Red Shoulder Hawk
Red-Shouldered Hawk

The big picture, taken when I first got out of the car, liking the tree but still not noticing the Hawk on the left:

Red Shoulder Hawk
Red-Shouldered Hawk Pair

I expected the Hawk would be long gone before I got any closer.

Good bye!

Red-Shouldered Hawk Flying Away

Barred Owl, Waiting

He waited, I waited.

A Barred Owl passed over me and I just saw his wing. A few moments later another one zipped through the tree canopy.  After walking along slowly and listening as the two owls “talked” to each other and several Crows made a ruckus overhead I spotted one high in a tree.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

He then flew towards a pond where I have seen an Owl before. I slowly walked in that direction, standing and waiting and I finally spotted him. This tree stands in the middle of that small pond. He was a little closer to the ground, maybe twenty feet (six meters) up.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

I inched around the side of the pond and got a side view.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

And a few more feet along and more waiting, the sun popped out for a minute.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

These were taken with my Sony Alpha 6500 with Sony 55-210 MM lens, which I rarely use for wildlife.  However, my Canon is off having the media slot fixed and I was pleased how these came out.

Barred Owl

I heard two Barred Owls talking to each other with that low cooing sound they use when they are on the hunt. After perching in a few spots in the tree canopy one of them settled for a bit above a small pond.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

I check this spot regularly, knowing that at least a pair of Barred Owls hunt here. Looking through past posts, June of 2018 was the last time my passing here was rewarded.

Sony Alpha 6500, Sony 55-210 mm

Red-shouldered Hawk

Perched over a boggy area at the edge of the swamp this Red-shouldered Hawk had just swooped in and seemed on high alert, probably looking for a meal.

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

He spent a few minutes here studying the area then moved on without even trying to catch lunch.

Check out his talons, curved around that branch. This is how they squeeze their meals. (Turtle, It’s What’s For Lunch)

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

Red-shouldered Hawk

With no leaves on the trees the Red-shouldered Hawks are easy to spot when they are around the edges of the swamp. Their red-orange color palette and size stand out even when they aren’t moving.

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

After first seeing this one I was able to get an unobstructed view from a little further along the trail.

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

He appeared to be looking for a snack as he studied the ground.

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

After about 20 minutes he flexed his wings and I expected him to fly, hoping it would be left to right in front of me.

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

Not to be, he settled in facing the other way.

Red-shouldered Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk

Turtle, It’s What’s For Lunch

I saw this Red-shouldered Hawk standing on the ground at the side of a pond and approached slowly. Other times I’ve seen them do this the bird was squeezing his next meal, but I didn’t see any food here.

Red-shouldered Hawk with Turtle
Red-shouldered Hawk with Turtle

Afterwards, when I zoomed in on what I thought was a tree root or Cypress knee, it turned out to be a turtle standing on its end.

Who knew a Red-shouldered Hawk could lift so much?He didn’t struggle at all and disappeared into the woods with his catch

Red-shouldered Hawk with Turtle
Red-shouldered Hawk with Turtle

I don’t know what made the hawk take off; I was standing still and the only human in view.

These were taken with the Sony Alpha 6500 which uses an electronic viewfinder, not the best arrangement for images of birds in flight due to the lag time.

Sony Alpha 6500, Sony 55-210 mm, at 210 mm.