Cooper’s Hawk at the Door!

We almost stepped directly into this scene:

Hawk at the Door - first sight

Hawk at the Door – first sight

A closer look at the carnage, seen diagonally through a pane of 1955-era glass:

Coopers Hawk - on door mat

Coopers Hawk – on door mat

The Cooper’s Hawk remained frozen in place while I got a better view from outside:

Coopers Hawk - with prey

Coopers Hawk – with prey

It then flew away with the gibbage in its claws, leaving us a doormat covered with feathers.

We’re not sure if the meal was a mockingbird or a Downy Woodpecker, but we’re apparently short one bird…

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  1. #1 by madbodger on 28-March-2013 - 09:12

    “Gibbage”? That’s a new one on me, although the meaning seems clear from context.

    • #2 by Ed on 28-March-2013 - 09:30

      If I were a gamer, I could say it with a straight face… but who has time for video games?

  2. #3 by Patrick on 28-March-2013 - 10:15

    Here’s an immature Coopers from my front yard last month. It was so cold and windy out that it was standing on one foot with the other tucked up in it’s feathers. https://plus.google.com/u/0/115825348318679016592/posts/XtcrVv69Jvw

    • #4 by Ed on 28-March-2013 - 13:19

      Well taken!

  3. #5 by Red County Pete on 28-March-2013 - 11:30

    Nice of you to provide a nice place mat for the hawk’s dinner. [grin] It’s small-furry animal whelping season out here, so the local birds of prey are going to be eating well for a month or two. They don’t like our mats, fortunately.

    • #6 by Ed on 28-March-2013 - 13:16

      small-furry animal whelping season

      One of the hawks nailed a red squirrel yesterday and paused on a branch outside the window for our approval. We think the squirrel woke up after a long winter’s nap, stepped outside to pee, and wham: mandatory end of the story. We heartily approved!

      • #7 by Red County Pete on 28-March-2013 - 14:15

        We get lots of predatory birds, from red-tail hawks on the small side to great horned owls and eagles on the other. I’m amazed (almost) at the abilities of the ground-squirrels to thrive. Our dogs like to hunt for them, too. They’ve established a time-share agreement with the daytime birds. We use a kennel at night for potty breaks–the owls might just go after our two 50 pound dogs. A friend used to raise emus–GHOs don’t find them tasty, but they’ll kill them just the same.

        Getting chewed out by a ticked-off eagle is one of the more fun signs of spring. (Hey you, away from my tree!)

        • #8 by Ed on 28-March-2013 - 19:02

          GHOs don’t find them tasty, but they’ll kill them just the same

          I wonder if the owls see an emu as some kind of snake attached to a small deer?

  4. #9 by Red County Pete on 28-March-2013 - 22:23

    The local owls (especially the GHOs) have a reputation as brutal killers, but not always big on taking the prey right away. Our minister and his wife lost a flock of chickens to owls when they used an uncovered pen. (Kill first, then maybe return for nibbles later. I gather owls have no sense of smell. Skunks are a favorite food.) When we moved out here, I built a covered kennel for our then-dogs, 12 pound Italian greyhounds. Makes it easier even with the bigger guys.

    We do have to contend with other critters, from coyotes up to mountain lions. I feel like Indiana Jones when getting ready for an after-dark garbage run to the barn, less the bullwhip.

    • #10 by Ed on 29-March-2013 - 06:26

      coyotes up to mountain lions

      According to a sign near a Vassar construction project, they’ve sighted a bobcat along the Fonteyn Kill running through the campus.

      Coyotes have returned to the area and black bears can’t be far behind…

      • #11 by Red County Pete on 29-March-2013 - 11:30

        Local bobcats weigh 25 pounds and know they’re not at the top of the food chain. “Our” mountain lion is about 100 and isn’t sure. I hope to see him before he sees me. When the dogs alert, I get very cautious about going outside. (Only one wolf in the region that the feds admit, and he just went west of the Cascades.) The coyotes run about 25 pounds, but in packs. We get a bunch of them, and ranchers have lost horses and cattle. (If people use the “Koy-yote” pronunciation, they don’t consider them cute relatives of Wiley.) I read of a coyote running through a McD’s in Chicago a few years ago.

        We get black bears in the area–a couple miles away, so far. That’s one reason why the garbage cans are 600 feet from the house…

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