Hawk Squawk

“THUD!”

“Yikes,” I thought, “another pigeon flew into the window.”

Then I heard the Hawk Squawk. Every bird in the yard chimed in to sound the alarm and didn’t let up. They were alerting each other that there was a feathered predator in the vicinity and to seek cover fast.  I had come to recognize this cacophony and knew to look in the trees to see what I could find.

I came into the dining room and saw the imprint of the pigeon on the window.

“Ooo, poor guy. That had to hurt,” I thought. I didn’t see any sign of him below the window, though, which meant he had enough strength to fly away.

I grabbed my camera and went outside in search of the cause of the ruckus. I had missed plenty of shots by being too anxious to get out the door too fast, and had learned my lesson.

Just a few days before, I had unsuspectingly come across a Cooper’s Hawk in the tree where the bird feeders hang. There I stood, empty handed. All I could do was stare at him. He actually talked to me, giving me a couple of high pitched “Screee” sounds. I backtracked as silently as I could to go get my camera, but when I came back he was gone. Note to self: be prepared!

So, this time I headed to the same tree. The tell tale sign was that there wasn’t a bird anywhere near the feeders so I was pretty sure I was on the right track. I turned on the camera and quietly walked underneath the tree. There he was, in the same spot as last time, only this time he didn’t leave. As the yard birds continued their Hawk Squawk, this guy let me get pretty close to him and we stayed watching each other for several minutes.

Cooper’s Hawk, juvenile
Cooper’s Hawk, juvenile

What a treat to be up close and personal to such a formidable bird; although, I’m sure the yard birds don’t share my enthusiasm.

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