Monday, December 2, 2013

Hawk

A little while ago I was standing in our room holding the baby and looking out the window. Father and I were discussing Christmas presents. I saw two birds swoop across the street and watched because one of them was obviously larger than the usual song birds we have around here. Suddenly both birds headed right for us and I saw the larger one (a hawk) bang right into one of the screens on our porch, then drop from view. I had a beautiful view of the underside of the hawk's wings because they were outstretched when the hawk hit the screen. 
 
 For some reason I felt like the bird must be still hanging around even though I knew it was almost certainly not harmed by hitting something so weak as a screen. I stood on the bed to get a downward view and gasped because the hawk was perched on one of the planters right outside the screen door. It was looking around in a rather severe way.



Father tiptoed around to the front door to look and called the children so they could get a close-up view of a hawk. Needless to say, this is not a bird that frequents our feeder. The children were all amazed. Father took a few pictures and then handed me the camera. I took a few from the windows in the front door, then took some from our room's window.



I began to be surprised that the hawk was still there. It was looking in all directions, almost as if it were waiting for something. I had a sudden memory of the description of Professor McGonagall from the first Harry Potter book, transfigured into a cat and sitting on the wall outside the Dursley's house.




Considering the bird was still there, we had gotten some pictures, and everyone had gotten a chance to get a good look, I decided to chance opening the door and slipping out onto the porch for a better look and better pictures. Amazingly I managed this (with, naturally, children trailing behind me). The hawk suddenly hopped down onto the next level of the side of the steps and continued to peer around. I took another picture. He (she?) was looking at the grass and into the more-or-less-dead plantings beside the steps. I was actually starting to wonder if it were hurt in some way because it clearly could see the paparazzi on the porch. Trying not to think about how dangerous it would be to throw a towel over an injured hawk without incurring serious injuries myself, I stepped a little closer to the opening in the door. The hawk hopped down onto the grass and started examining the dead plantings with interest. I stepped out of the doorway and onto the first step to get a better look. Another step.


 
Suddenly the hawk hopped to the corner of the house. I walked down the next couple steps...and in the process flushed out a small bird which had been crouching unseen on the steps next to the wall. Father had a better view and reported that the hawk immediately snagged the bird and flew around the neighbor's house.

Well, darn it. :c(  Now I feel bad. Obviously the hawk had been looking around with such interest and refused to leave because it knew the prey was around here somewhere. *sigh* This isn't exactly the same, but I feel rather like this guy here:


I looked it up and it appears to have been a merlin, probably female. (Feel free to correct me if you know otherwise.)

2 comments:

  1. What an adventure! Great pictures too! (When I was hosting a rescued Yorkie several years ago, I never let him out alone because we had hawks in the neighborhood.)

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  2. How exciting! We had a hawk perched on our fence right outside the kitchen window last year and everyone got to look. It was really amazing because I'd never seen one at such close range. It sounds like you guys really got a great chance to observe though! Very neat!

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