Monday, December 2, 2013

Prospect, : a buteo, a falcon and some Coops

The slowdown of birds approaching winter solstice is ameliorated by the good moments we are afforded sometimes. Like today, raptors were my moments to watch ,adding enjoyment on an otherwise boring , quiet day.

Start with the RED-TAILED HAWK. There is a tree that sits at the southwest corner of the Tennis House, that is usually a favorite perch for the Merlin. Well, get to that guy later. In the morning, it's the throne for the RED-TAILED HAWK, getting  360 degree views of the watch out squirrels ! ( or maybe a flyby Red headed Woodpecker  ;)  )

Then later, what would that perch be , not blessed by the presence of a MERLIN ? Sure enough, when I left work at 335, there's the MERLIN, the very same limb perch that the buteo took earlier, now very much like Archie's Bunker "chair" that belongs to the falcon. I got some cell phone photo shots (but its a dot, more like an irregular "blob" in my zoomed up photo) . About 5 minutes  later , the MERLIN takes off , flying fast and aggressively towards the Quaker Cemetery and it chased something out of my view. You know now why I love bold Merlins.

Getting now to the COOPER's HAWK.  Just about my morning break time, I spotted an AMERICAN CROW,  and all of a sudden , 36  crows materialized !  Up over the Vanderbilt St Playground, the tight flock of these irregular numbers of crows seemed to be chasing something as well. Well , of course, there is a juvenile COOPER'S HAWK  soaring in  circles.Took me a while to figure it out the raptor, with the clincher when it flew over me. Then later, in the late afternoon, I suddenly see a raptor fly in my direction from the Well Drive picnic tables and fly up into the beech tree where it perched. Nice to see an adult COOPER'S HAWK just above me in great pose; then as I walked by the west shore of the lake, I see this biker looking up  the tree by the oval near the playground where initially I didn't see anything but a few seconds later, I see it's the COOPER'S again.

Winter is coming , but with these raptors hanging around, there won't be any boredom to complain about.


date = 2013/12/03
site = Prospect Park
observers = Peter
Double-crested Cormorant Lake
Great Blue Heron 2;1 Binnen Pool, an later Upper Pool Island, one Lake
Northern Shoveler Lake, 100 +
Gadwall mix pair at Upper Pool
American Black Duck 2 Lake
Canada Goose 37 flyover Park Circle for eve roost 
Hooded Merganser 7 ; 4 at Three Sisters Isl; 3 at Duck Isl
Ruddy Duck Lake scattered
Mute Swan 6 lake
Cooper's Hawk 2; flyover Juv chased by 37 crows Vanderbilt PG; then later adult at Welldrive
Red-tailed Hawk Perched at Tennis House tree, later Merlin same perch in late afternoon
Merlin Tennis House raptor tree
American Coot 
Great Black-backed Gull 2 lake
Ring-billed Gull 
Herring Gull 
Rock Pigeon 
Mourning Dove 
Downy Woodpecker Upper Pool elms
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker  south lakeside
Hermit Thrush south Lakeside
Swamp Sparrow 2 west isl cove edge
White-throated Sparrow 1 west isl cove edge
Northern Cardinal 2 west isl cove edge; 2 well drive
Red-winged Blackbird 6 West Isl sweetgums
House Finch 4 west isl cove edge
House Sparrow