Thursday, February 13, 2014

Someone Came for Lunch

February 5th, 2014

Our birdfeeder is attracting a lot of birds this winter. But some do not come for the sunflower seeds. This immature Cooper's Hawk showed up and decided that a sparrow was just what she needed for lunch. The menu was either a junco or a white-throated sparrow. By the time we got home from shopping, it was a bit had to tell. The hawk de-feathered her meal then ate everything else, bones and all. Then she perched on a branch in full view for over an hour, crop full and enjoying the sun. Only the agile titmouses dared return.

Coopers Hawk dining.
Accipiter Cooperii, immature female

Camera was a Nikon D80 with a 500mm f8 Zeiss Fernobjektiv
set at f11 and less than 30 feet away. Did not have to do virtually any cropping.
Another Cooper's Hawk visited two days later, but it appeared smaller and may be a male. It was already showing adult plummage on the sides of its breast and still had the white terminal band to its tail. This bird should have a white terminal band as well, but her tail feathers are so worn that the tips are gone. The second bird was spotted by the small birds before it even got close and failed to get a lunch.

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