Raptor Wednesday Outtakes

Falco columbarius I am of course pleased when I can present a fine photograph of a living creature, but this blog has never been about photography per se. I think of my photos as illustrative and educational tools. I’d like people to think they too could take such pictures, right outside their door or not too far away. No need to go to distant places — or depend on others to go for you or watch it on TV — for startling hits of nature itself.

Above is a Merlin at the extreme of my camera’s lens. Identification was made easy because the bird had been much closer earlier, perching on that raptor-favored tree above Terrace Bridge, and then harried from pillar to post by an ever-growing number of Blue Jays.Terrace BridgeThis is the other end of the lens. The Merlin is on the top right of the tree in the center distance here.Accipiter cooperiiHere’s another quick-moving raptor. I’d just bubbled out the Chip Shop on Atlantic Avenue and a swirling of pigeons over the intersection perked up my hawk-sense. (I really must be careful to not be bumped into by a pedestrian or run-over by a bicyclist or car on the sidewalk, wot?) A silhouette atop LICH caught my eye, but only through the lens could I get any sense of what it was. The talons are suggestive, the just visible bars on the tail, too. Another shot showed a bit of the russet breast. One of the local Cooper’s. westA phone picture. One day recently I heard a Crow cawing just before descending into the Bergen St. subway and then, when I emerged at the end of my trip underground/underwater at West 4th St., I heard another. I glanced around and up and saw a little falcon swoop over 6th Avenue. Three days earlier about two blocks to the north I’d also seen a little falcon overhead. Both days were these overcast winter gray days, meaning there wasn’t much more than a silhouette to see, but I feel pretty confident that the second instance was a Kestrel. Then I saw a Crow flying over Father Demo Square, but the cawing continued to come from elsewhere. All this, of course, with mid-day traffic howling up Sixth Ave. There it was, in the trees of the corner park at Bleecker & Downing. And it was yelling at a Red-tailed Hawk who perched below it. A Blue Jay further up added some vocal alert to the mix, but it’s hard to beat a Crow when it comes to the alarm department. Or all the people who didn’t seem to hear any of this as they walked by.

5 Responses to “Raptor Wednesday Outtakes”

  1. 1 Peggy Herron February 18, 2015 at 10:35 am

    All New Yorkers need to do occasionally is put their phone away for a few minutes and llook up and around.
    When I tell a neighbor what I even just spotted in our backyard . They are surprised and then dismissive . I find it sad that they don’t feel the excitement and joy in seeing the wildlife around us.
    Thanks for your observations and I continue to search the trees and sky .

  2. 3 elwnyc February 18, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    I’ve been seeing red-tailed hawks flying over my apartment complex on an occasional basis for a month or two now – two of them circling together yesterday. Always a thrill when I look up from the computer to see them, especially since I’m a wimp about the cold and don’t like to go out to the parks in this season. Luckily my peripheral vision doesn’t let them go unnoticed.

    • 4 mthew February 18, 2015 at 8:54 pm

      Welcome back, Elizabeth! I think we may have the spam filter licked. Hopefully unspamming this will clear your future comments straight through as before.

  3. 5 elwnyc February 18, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    I may have done something to make it work – I had been “commenting” through my WordPress account (which I don’t use) but this time I did it somehow differently (already forgot how). Anyway, I’m ba-a-a-ck! 🙂

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