Raptor Week

Cooper’s Hawks continue to dominate my transects. At one, there is a marsh, usually very active with birdlife. As I approached, I was struck by the silence. I scared up some mallards and wood ducks, but then noticed an adult Coop sitting quietly on a dead tree. Imagine my surprise when a juvenile whizzed by, chasing a screaming green heron! A bird bigger than him! Of course he was unsuccessful, staring glumly at the patch of cattails his prey disappeared into. At least the marauding got me a bird I knew was there, but hadn’t been able to pick up. An alarmed Sora cried out while one of the juvenile Coops was flushing other birds. A pair of Pied-billed Grebes ignored the chaos. pied billed grebes

Later I re-found the Peregrine Falcon I saw on a previous transect. He attacked a Northern Flicker I was admiring, but didn’t get him! As I walked past, this nervous nelly almost flew, but as you can see from the picture decided I wasn’t that scary. pefa1 pefa2

On my last route of the week, it was quiet, but walking back to my car I saw a Mississippi Kite perched over the path. Talk about stoic! He didn’t seem to give a darn that I was directly under him, snapping photos like a raptor paparazzi!

mississippi kite

Last but not least, the monsoon storms have been bringing some indescribably beautiful skies to the Sandia Mountains! sandia sky

Keep watching nature,  you never know what will turn up!

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