Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Super-cool super-hawk and more

The hawks around here are all aflutter these days, as it's apparently time for them to start courting potential mates. On Rt 220 between Bellefonte and State College, I've seen at least four or five redtails at any given time--some alone, some within spitting distance of others. I guess the hormones are firing up and it's time to check out the prospects!

Here's a raptor I saw on Friday:

Am I correct in thinking that this is a female red-tailed hawk? The tail doesn't seem too red in these photos, but it was redder in real life. I'm sure Susan or someone will correct me if I'm wrong. It seems like whenever I think I've got a hawk ID, it always ends up being a Cooper's Hawk. But this one definitely doesn't have the long Coop tail. So--redtail?

Other sightings as I drove around Bald Eagle State Park on Saturday:
It's so cool to see water seeping out of the hillsides and freezing into these beautiful scenes. Here's another: Saw some ducks and geese, but nothing new.

Finally, some scat Gretchen and I found on Sunday at Colyer Lake:


Click to embiggen, and note the fur and seeds. I'm guessing the fur is squirrel fir, as it was stiff and kinda wiry looking. But the seeds? Is this coyote or wolf poo?

8 comments:

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

I saw a huge red tail hawk sirting on a tree branch and I thought of you.

NCmountainwoman said...

Great photographs! I especially like the frozen water. Amost like a waterfall.

KatDoc said...

Delia,

You can't tell gender of most raptors based on color (American Kestrel is one exception) as they are not sexually dimorphic. Female raptors are usually bigger than males of their species, but if they don't sit next to each other, it can be really hard to gauge size in a distant bird.

However, you can age Red-tailed Hawks based on color, and it's really easy. Juvenile birds don't have a red tail. Instead, it is brown.

See? Now you know.

~Kathi

KatDoc said...

Oh - sorry. Didn't get the main question. Yes, RT Hawk.

~K

Lynne said...

Sweet pix Delia!
Nice poo too.
Where's that Susan- she'll know the poo.

Lisa Beth said...

I'm jealous of your hawk sightings. Love to watch them. (but don't tell your birding friends I have no clue what kind of hawk)

Susan Gets Native said...

Red-tailed hawk.
Don't know about the poo.

: )

Lisa said...

Isn't if funny, whenever I see a hawk, and I see them often, I think of you, too, D!

And I always love a post that ends with a picture of scat!