Monday, December 31, 2007

New Year

Seems like a return to the starting point. The last of the fledglings of spring are totally independent by now. Resident raptors settle into their territories as they start to spar and court on the wind. Who knows what this year will bring, but its going to be a tall order to match the unbelievable production from around the city. Here's a few highlights from upper Manhattan over the past week.
A flyby by one of the Cathedral hawks,

Hedda Gobbler

Up in Inwood, those redtails are also highly visible over their turf.

The Broadway Bridge Peregrines also take notice.
While I was walking to the train, I saw a large flock of pigeons flyout from the El.
Right behind them was a young RTH, who must've flushed them from the structure.

Immediately the tercel flew out and stooped on the hawk, narrowly missing it, before pulling out right over head!

It then flew off towards Marble Hill, where I found it with its mate, who had already made a kill!

The female then flew off, with prey in tow, and landed right on the Bridge!

The male then flew out and attacked one of the Inwood Hill adults,

Heading home, I spotted the Cathedral male, atop the Horn of Gabriel!

I walked around to get a better view.

I also saw a big juvy Cooper's in a tree only about 30' from Bway Bridge. It saw me before I saw it and it was out of sight by the time I brought up my camera.
There were also these guys (and gal)!

Happy New Beginnings to us all!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas 2007

Beautiful weather contributed great light to a unseasonably warm day.
Full of Christmas Colors!

More of his handiwork

While rounding the Blockhouse, I heard a sound not unlike the whine of a squirrel alarm call.

I listened closer, and the call was more sharp and not as high pitched. Looking out, I spotted a juvy Cooper's

The call was not the sharp kek-kek-kek described in guidebooks. It was similar to a squirrel alarm call, but not as nasally. I looked through the trees to see what it was calling to.

The juvy flew off at the adult,

The murderous red eye of the adult...

and both circled around the Blockhouse, out of sight.
After a few minutes of searching, I heard the same sound and found the juvy making furtive advances towards the adult.

The juvy then tried to hop on the adult!

Knocking the adult off the branch...

she then promptly flew off.

Also seen were a thrush of one sort or another.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Hawk Pix

The Cathedral pair and their young still crisscross over the Park on a daily basis.

Courtship behavior

The pair on Wadleigh...some 4 city blocks or about 1200ft away.

Female on left, male on right.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Great Raptor Activity

Now that the leaves are down in most of the parks, spotting wintering raptors becomes much easier. My count for the weekend was:
110th St.
2 adult RTH
3 juvy RTH
1 adult coopers
1 juvy coopers
Great Lawn Area
2 adult RTH
2 juvy RTH
2 leo's
Here's some pix...
The Cathedral Pair on Wadleigh

while a youngster passes over their territory.

The one with the damaged wing passed overhead!

Near the Great Lawn
A Pair of LEO's

and a juvy RTH

Near the Great Hill, another juvy RTH

and a juvy Cooper's

stalking a great big ole flock of grackles!