A correspondent let me know that there was a Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) nest on a fire-escape in Gowanus. I headed over as soon as I could. When I lived in Cobble Hill, I often crossed the Valley of the Shadow of the Gowanus by foot and sometimes saw RTH soaring overhead or on top of St. Agnes, the tallest building around. Soon as I turned the corner, those silhouette in the morning sun proclaimed the scene. It looks like there is one youngster on the nest, an “eyas” in the old lexicon of falconry, still shy of fledging. I found out later that several other birders were already aware of this nest. It seems hard to miss by anyone walking by, but of course even a photographer shooting image after image at something up there fails to entice the curiosity of most passersby. It looks like the birds made three attempts at a nest on two different fire-escapes, two on one, one on the other. The middle nest was the one completed and used. A fellow Twitterer said he had just spotted a RTH nest on a Bed-Stuy fire-escape. This is four stories up from the hard sidewalk and the busy street: let’s wish this eyas luck on his or her first flight/controlled-to-some-extent fall…
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This work by Matthew Wills is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.